India inks $500 million credit deal with Myanmar

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India’s Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Myanmar’s President Thein Sein revive old trade relations between the two countries. Photo: President’s Office

India will provide Myanmar with $500 million worth of credit as one of 12 deals signed on May 28 during the historic visit of Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, the first Indian premier to visit Myanmar in a quarter of a century, the Times of India reported. The credit line will be used for infrastructure development projects in agriculture, irrigation, rail transport and power.

Singh’s visit is aimed at forging closer ties between the two countries, whose economic relations have been idle during the isolation of Myanmar in the past decades.

After Myanmar’s recent opening to the outside world, India seems to be highly interested in resuming old trade relations. According to India’s official statistics, trade with Myanmar stood at only $1.2 billion in 2010, far short of the $4.4 billion between China and Myanmar. China at present is the biggest investor in Myanmar, with India trailing in 13th place, with $189 million pledged.

Other agreements signed during Singh’s visit include boosting energy supplies from resource-rich Myanmar to energy-hungry India, enhance trade and cross-border rail, shipping and road links. Singh and Myanmar’s president Thein Sein set a deadline to upgrade road connectivity by 2016 to make is possible to drive right up from India across Myanmar to Thailand.

Pacts were also signed on exploration and production of petroleum and leasing of a paper and pulp mill as well as to establish border trade complexes, schools and health centers along the 1,300-kilometer frontier between the two countries, accoring to Myanmar’s The Irrawaddy newspaper.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Weimin said in a comment that “China is glad to see India and Myanmar develop friendly cooperative relations”, and that he hopes “that the development of their relations is conducive to the peace, stability and prosperity of the two countries as well as the region”, as quoted in China Daily.

Since Western sanctions on Myanmar were recently eased, international businesses have renewed their interest in investing in the Southeast Asian nation. The International Monetary Fund has predicted that the Burmese economy will grow by 5.5 per cent in 2013.

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

India’s Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Myanmar’s President Thein Sein revive old trade relations between the two countries. Photo: President’s Office

India will provide Myanmar with $500 million worth of credit as one of 12 deals signed on May 28 during the historic visit of Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, the first Indian premier to visit Myanmar in a quarter of a century, the Times of India reported. The credit line will be used for infrastructure development projects in agriculture, irrigation, rail transport and power.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

India’s Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Myanmar’s President Thein Sein revive old trade relations between the two countries. Photo: President’s Office

India will provide Myanmar with $500 million worth of credit as one of 12 deals signed on May 28 during the historic visit of Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, the first Indian premier to visit Myanmar in a quarter of a century, the Times of India reported. The credit line will be used for infrastructure development projects in agriculture, irrigation, rail transport and power.

Singh’s visit is aimed at forging closer ties between the two countries, whose economic relations have been idle during the isolation of Myanmar in the past decades.

After Myanmar’s recent opening to the outside world, India seems to be highly interested in resuming old trade relations. According to India’s official statistics, trade with Myanmar stood at only $1.2 billion in 2010, far short of the $4.4 billion between China and Myanmar. China at present is the biggest investor in Myanmar, with India trailing in 13th place, with $189 million pledged.

Other agreements signed during Singh’s visit include boosting energy supplies from resource-rich Myanmar to energy-hungry India, enhance trade and cross-border rail, shipping and road links. Singh and Myanmar’s president Thein Sein set a deadline to upgrade road connectivity by 2016 to make is possible to drive right up from India across Myanmar to Thailand.

Pacts were also signed on exploration and production of petroleum and leasing of a paper and pulp mill as well as to establish border trade complexes, schools and health centers along the 1,300-kilometer frontier between the two countries, accoring to Myanmar’s The Irrawaddy newspaper.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Weimin said in a comment that “China is glad to see India and Myanmar develop friendly cooperative relations”, and that he hopes “that the development of their relations is conducive to the peace, stability and prosperity of the two countries as well as the region”, as quoted in China Daily.

Since Western sanctions on Myanmar were recently eased, international businesses have renewed their interest in investing in the Southeast Asian nation. The International Monetary Fund has predicted that the Burmese economy will grow by 5.5 per cent in 2013.

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