Boost to Kaladan project: India-Myanmar signed MoU towards making Sittwe port operational

  • Category
    World Affairs
  • Published
    29th Oct, 2018
  • India and Myanmar inked a crucial Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to appoint a private operator for operation and maintenance of Sittwe port located at the mouth of Kaladan River in Rakhine state of Myanmar.
  • The port is a part of the Kaladan project which aims to connect Sittwe port in Myanmar to India-Myanmar border.

Context

  • India and Myanmar inked a crucial Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to appoint a private operator for operation and maintenance of Sittwe port located at the mouth of Kaladan River in Rakhine state of Myanmar.
  • The port is a part of the Kaladan project which aims to connect Sittwe port in Myanmar to India-Myanmar border.

About

  • Myanmar is one of India’s strategic neighbours and shares a 1,640-km-long border with a number of north-eastern states including militancy-hit Nagaland and Manipur.
  • India has an overall commitment of $1.75 billion for developmental programmes in Myanmar.Kaladan Project is one of them.
  • The Sittwe port in Myanmar is expected to connect India’s landlocked north-east region to the Bay of Bengal through Mizoram. It will also provide an alternate route to Kolkata.
  • Current MoU for the appointment of a private Port Operator also covers operation and maintenance of Paletwa Inland Water Terminal and associated facilities that are part of the Kaladan Multi Model Transit Transport Project.
  • Following this MoU, the process of identifying bidders to maintain these facilities will be initiated by floating aRequest for Proposal (RFP).

Kaladanmulti modal transport transitProject

  • The project was jointly identified by the India and Myanmar to create a multi-modal mode of transport for shipment of cargo from the eastern ports of India to Myanmar as well as to the North-Eastern part of India through Myanmar.
  • The larger aim is to connect Sittwe port with India’s the Bay of Bengal ports of Visakhapatnam, Krishnapatnam and south Chennai and in future to Haldia, Paradip or Dhamra.
  • Cargo from these ports will land in Sittwe port and from there to the Southeast Asian countries of Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam.

Significance

  • Being a key connectivity project, commencement of operations at Sittwe port would offer new infrastructure for tradeby opening up the sea route between India and Myanmar.
  • It will contribute to the economic development in the whole region, North-Eastern States of India and Rakhine and Chin States of Myanmar.
  • It also provides a strategic link to the North-East, thereby reducing pressure on the Siliguri Corridor.
  • The project is vital for India’s Act East Policy as it provides India access to Southeast Asian economies.

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