Trade Panel To Be Set Up With Myanmar

New Delhi, January 21: | Updated: Jan 22 2003, 05:30am hrs
India and Myanmar have decided to set up a joint trade committee (JTC) at the ministerial level.

In a meeting between commerce minister Arun Shourie and Myanmar foreign minister U Win Aung in New Delhi on Tuesday, it was decided to hold the inaugural meeting of the proposed JTC very soon.

Issues of bilateral trade, border trade and economic cooperation would be discussed in the meeting, a press release said.

Pointing out that border trade between the countries had declined in the last few years, India requested during the meeting that Myanmar should fulfil the obligation of opening up another port which would help in raising the quantum of border trade. Mr Aung assured that his country would consider the issue sympathetically.

Both sides agreed to speed up the project of linking Indias North-East region to South-East Asia via Myanmar. The project will benefit both thecountries as it will reduce transaction costs substantially. Two task forces are working on it.

Indias trade with Myanmar registered a healthy growth of 96.3 per cent during 2001-02 amounting to $434.51 million. While exports from India increased by 19.24 per cent, imports to India increased by 119.19 per cent during 2001-02.

Major items of exports include wheat flour, ani seeds, agarbatti, bleaching powder and automotive components while major import items include betel nuts, turmeric, grams and cumin seeds.