Event Reports

Divya Jeevan Foundation,

Recent times has seen a marked emphasis on promoting regional cooperation in Eastern South Asia, the Bay of Bengal region and extending up to the Indo Pacific region. While multilateralism in the form of regional cooperation has been successfully initiated and implemented in numerous parts of the world (ASEAN and the EU as striking examples), in the South Asian case, progress has been relatively slow in spite of established mechanisms such as SAARC, BIMSTEC, SASEC, MGC, BBIN, etc. Renewed efforts to revive and strengthen frameworks like BIMSTEC (Bay of Bengal Initiative on multi-sectoral technical and Economic Cooperation), BBIN (Bhutan, Bangladesh, India and Nepal) are evident.

The building concept of a larger Indo Pacific region strengthens the need to seek cooperation on both bilateral and multilateral terms for enhanced interaction and engagement at several levels: economic, security and socio cultural amongst India and her larger Eastern neighbourhood. Regional cooperation is of special significance for India’s North Eastern and Eastern region along with her immediate neighbours for making India’s Act East Policy (AEP), a corner stone of her foreign policy, a success .The following factors can be considered:

• The region is a physical land connector between South Asia and Southeast Asia. India’s overall domestic agenda of economic development and security of the North-eastern region of India (consisting of the eight states of Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Manipur, Sikkim,Tripura, Assam and Arunachal Pradesh) has many dependencies on factors such as her overall relation with the immediate neighbours Bangladesh, China, Bhutan, Nepal and Myanmar which share long borders with these states. Development cooperation between India’s North Eastern region and immediate neighbours Bangladesh, Bhutan Nepal and Myanmar at both bilateral and multilateral levels has immense possibilities for the region as a whole.

• Connectivity both physical and electronic for a seamless skill grid promising higher levels of employment; etc. In India, stated government policy such as “Act East Policy”, and “Neighborhood First Policy” are large steps taken by the government in this regard. This has found complementarity in “Look West “policies of nations such as Thailand and therecently formed Japan N.E India Act East Forum.

• Inland Water ways to connect the North eastern region to the ocean through Bangladesh and open up an ecosystem of prosperity which existed prior to the partition;

• Greater cooperation within the BIMSTEC region;

• The possibility of a larger energy grid exploiting the immense potential of hydro power in the sub Himalayan region spanning from the Brahmaputra to the Mekong to feed a ever growing populous region;

• It would be pertinent to recall the contribution of the Government of India towards increasing the pace of development of the North Eastern Region (NER). A fullfledged Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DONER) was established in 2004 with territorial jurisdiction over the entire NER to give focused attention to the region and speeding up the pace of developmental efforts of all the concerned line Ministries of the Union Government, which were mandated to allocate not less than 10% of their budget for the NER.


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This is a good article
Posted by :
Posted on : 29-Apr-2017 06:31:22 AM

Needs a lot of corrections and citations
Posted by : SDATTA
Posted on : 10-May-2017 12:43:06 AM