‘Act East policy can boost trade with neighbouring countries’

Agartala, March 11 (IANS) India’s ‘Act East’ policy could help boost trade between the northeastern states and the neighbouring countries, Belgium Ambassador to India Jan Luykx said here on Friday.

“Resource rich northeastern region is a beautiful area of India. The region can tie up with Myanmar, Bangladesh, Thailand and other southeast Asian countries to boost each others’ trade and economy exploiting the Act East Policy,” Luykx told reporters.

He said: “There is huge possibility and potentiality of developing fruit processing industries in the northeastern region as the region has resources and manpower as well.”

Currently on a visit to the northeastern states, the ambassador met Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar here on Thursday evening.

“I have discussed various strategic, trade and business issues with Mr Sarkar. The chief minister gave us a detailed picture of possible trade, industries and economic activities in Tripura. Rubber and bamboo cultivation have a great prospect in the state.”

“The purpose of my visit to the northeasterrn states was to explore and learn the best practices here and to look for possibilities of cooperation between Belgium and the northeastern region of India,” he added.

The envoy said that Belgium is helping India in its “Clean Ganga” campaign and a pilot project in this regard has already begun.

He said that Belgium is also keen to support water treatment projects in Lucknow and Delhi and talks are on for this purpose.

“Belgium has a close relation with India for the past many years in trading diamonds. The two countries also trade in chemicals, medicines and machinery,” Luykx said.

He said Belgian industrialists are keen to meet Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi when he would visit that country by this month end.

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