Manmohan Singh in Myanmar: An Indian PM’s visit after 25 years (Lead)May 27th, 2012 - 8:19 pm ICT by IANS
Nay Pyi Taw, May 27 (IANS) Manmohan Singh arrived in Myanmar’s new capital Sunday on a three-day trip that will see India expanding trade and connectivity with its oil-rich neighbour that an Indian prime minister is visiting after 25 years.
Manmohan Singh will Monday meet President Thein Sein who heads a quasi civilian government that has been carrying out rapid reforms since last year. On Tuesday, he will meet pro-democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi in Yangon.
The prime minister is accompanied by his wife Gursharan Kaur, External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna and senior officials.
This is the first trip by an Indian prime minister to the country in a quarter century. The last Indian prime minister to visit the country was Rajiv Gandhi in 1987.
Improving regional connectivity and expanding bilateral trade will be key highlights of the visit by Manmohan Singh who is expected to underline India’s full support for bolstering the democratic transformation in that country.
Manmohan Singh will speak on the theme “India and Myanmar: A Partnership for Progress and Regional Development” at a function organised by the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce & Industry and the Myanmar Development Resource Institute.
A visit to the historic Shwedagon Pagoda and the tomb of Bahadur Shah Zafar, the last Mughal emperor of India, in Yangon are among important highlights of the prime minister’s itinerary.
Foreign Secretary Ranjan Mathai said the foundation for the visit was laid during last year’s visit by the Myanmar president to India.
“Myanmar is integral to India’s Look East policy,” he said in New Delhi Friday.
He said new initiatives will be discussed during the trip that will “lay out the roadmap” with regard to security, connectivity as well as human resource development and academic exchanges.
The Indian cabinet Thursday has cleared a bus service linking Imphal in Manipur to Mandalay in Myanmar. Mandalay is about 600 km from the Indian border town of Moreh and Imphal is another 100 km away from there.
A delegation of CEOs of major Indian companies are also in Myanmar during the prime minister’s visit.
India shares a 1,643 km long border with Myanmar. The Indian states sharing Myanmar border are Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram.
The prime minister returns Tuesday night.
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- India, Myanmar to be better connected, have more trade (Fourth Lead) - May 28, 2012
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- India pledges Myanmar $10 mn, donates 10 rice silos (Second Lead) - Jun 21, 2011
- Manmohan Singh meets Myanmar President Thein Sein - May 28, 2012
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Tags: academic exchanges, aung san suu kyi, chambers of commerce, civilian government, democratic transformation, external affairs minister, human resource development, imphal, indian cabinet, indian prime minister, manmohan singh, mathai, mughal emperor, myanmar development, rajiv gandhi, regional connectivity, resource institute, san suu, shah zafar, shwedagon pagoda