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Northeast Development & Sagaramala Initiative



  Sep 02, 2023

North-East Development and Sagaramala


The North-Eastern region of India, characterized by its strategic location and rich biodiversity, has always held immense potential for trade, tourism, and cultural exchanges. However, it has historically been hampered by infrastructural and connectivity challenges. Recognizing the significance of this region, especially in the context of India's Act East Policy, the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways (MoPSW) has taken several initiatives.
 
The Sagarmala Project: Under the broader ambit of the Sagarmala project, the development of port infrastructure not only serves coastal regions but also aims at creating robust inland waterways. This benefits the North-East by ensuring efficient cargo movement, which is vital for the region's economic growth.
 
Investment in Waterways: The North-Eastern states, crisscrossed by numerous rivers, have a high potential for developing waterways. MoPSW's investment of ₹1,126 crore aims at unlocking this potential, thereby integrating the North-East into the broader Indian transport network.
 
National Waterways: By declaring 20 rivers in the North-East as National Waterways, MoPSW underscores the importance of river navigation for the region. It not only facilitates trade within India but also with neighboring countries, especially Bangladesh.
 
Specific Projects: The comprehensive development of the Brahmaputra and Barak rivers, vital waterways for Assam and surrounding states, is paramount. The construction of alternative roads, ship repair facilities, and the development of rivers for transport will significantly improve the ease of doing business in the region.
 
Regional Connectivity: MoPSW is not merely focused on internal connectivity. Its initiatives in notifying ports as "Gateway Port" and "Transshipment Port of Call" emphasize the importance of regional trade, especially with Nepal and Bangladesh.
 
Alignment with Act East Policy: The Act East Policy is a strategic foreign policy initiative that seeks to strengthen India's ties with the Asia-Pacific region. MoPSW's initiatives directly contribute to this policy by improving connectivity, promoting trade, and establishing India's North-East as a pivotal gateway to South-East Asia.
 
In conclusion, the North-Eastern region is undergoing a transformation, with the Ministry of Ports, Shipping, and Waterways playing a pivotal role in its development. The projects and policies undertaken not only seek to bolster the economic potential of the region but also aim to integrate it more cohesively with the rest of India and its eastern neighbors.


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