Ninth NE Business Summit gets underway

GUWAHATI, Nov 23:  The ninth North East Business Summit 2013, a flagship conference of Indian Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and supported by Ministry of DoNER, got underway at Dibrugarh in eastern Assam yesterday with a three-day programme and a host of dignitaries from within as well as outside the country in attendance.
DoNER minister and Summit chairman Paban Singh Ghatowar, emphasized during the inaugural session on the strength and potential the North-Eastern Region (NER) in an array of sectors including travel and tourism, hospitality, IT and ITeS, financial services, handloom and handicrafts, power and energy and oil and natural gas.
In the 2013-14 Union Budget, the Central Government has proposed to seek the assistance of the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank to build roads in NE states and also connect them to Myanmar, which is expected to boost the current growth rate of industrialization, he said.
‘With proper implementation of the North East Industrial Investment Promotion Policy, 2007, the region will witness expansion in industrial projects and infusion of capital,’ Mr Ghatowar added.
Special Guest of Honour U Ye Myint, Chief Minister, Mandalay Region of Myanmar, stressed on having intensive trade linkages with the NER, especially through Manipur.
He said that transport facility between India, China and Thailand should be developed, which would undoubtedly increase the volume of trade between the countries.
Speaking on similar line, Special Guest of Honour U Thar Aye, Chief Minister, Sagaing Region of Myanmar, said there is a huge potential of trade between Sagaing region and NER and sectors of prime importance include wood based industry, where several states of the region produces commodities based on bamboo and wooden products.
Mr B K Chaturvedi, Member, Planning Commission, Government of India, stressed on the objectives, plans and proposals laid out by the Planning Commission to develop the NER.
Special Guest of Honour, Mr Okram Ibobi Singh, Chief Minister, Manipur, said even if there is huge untapped potential of the NER, there is a huge dearth of power and energy in the state.
He suggested that urgent and special focus should be paid on developing the infrastructure and power scenario of the region.
Mr Gautam Mukhopadhyay, Indian Ambassador to Myanmar, said trade deficit scenario between India and Myanmar need to be reduced through development of infrastructure and flight connectivity.
The session was also attended by Mr. Michael Pelletier, Deputy Chief of Mission, U.S. Embassy; Mr U K Sangma, Secretary, DoNER; Mr. A M Singh, Joint Secretary, Ministry of DoNER; Mr. M K Saharia, Chairman, ICC North East Initiative and other people from the industry and Ministries.
The ICC Sports Excellence Award was conferred to Ms. Anshu Jamsempa and ICC Excellence Award was given to Mr. Habib Mohammad Chawdhury.
The three day conference will witness B2B meetings, Industry specific sessions and will bring forth implementable policies.  (UNI)


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