Yangon [Myanmar]: President Ram Nath Kovind inaugurated ‘Enterprise India’ exhibition here on Thursday, bringing in the best of Indian products, services, innovation and know-how to business partners, start-ups, incubators and customers in Myanmar.
This exhibition has been set up by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), including about 45-50 Indian companies ranging from very large companies to small enterprises, to showcase Indian manufacturing capabilities and industrial technology.
The official spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs tweeted, “Harnessing Complementaries! While addressing the Fifth Enterprise India Show jointly organised by CII and Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce in #Yangon, #PresidentKovind asked companies from both countries to leverage each other competencies! @FollowCII”
President Kovind said that India is focusing on fostering micro and small enterprises, driving financial inclusion and imparting skills. India’s micro-credit scheme MUDRA has so far disbursed 128 million loans worth over USD 90 billion to start small businesses. This has unleashed entrepreneurship, self-employment and growth of micro-enterprises, President Kovind noted.
“We, indeed, have important lessons to share with Myanmar in this regard, for both our countries face similar socio-economic challenges and have similar objectives to meet. I am, therefore, particularly happy that this Show is accompanied by a full-day conference on Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises sector,” President Kovind said in his statement.
Providing further details into the business model of the country, President Kovind reiterated that India is not only a source of goods and services but also technology, finance, best business practices, innovation and smart solutions. The country has undertaken steps to transform its economy through ambitious infrastructure projects, smart-city programmes, high-speed train corridors, green-field airports, port-led industrial development and digital connectivity i-ways.
In addition to this, manufacturing and investment projects in the country, such as Make in India, Digital India, Skill India and Start-up India flagship programmes are creating new business values and ushering in trans-formational socio-economic empowerment and progress. These signature projects and the businesses that they are growing in India present many opportunities for Myanmar, the Indian President added.
Noting a rise in India’s position to 65th place in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business ranking over a span of the last four years, President Kovind assured that Indian companies and their capacities could offer Myanmar the best of infrastructure, cutting-edge products and services and digitally driven choices, from financial-technology to biotech and more. He also added that Myanmar companies, if they decide to ‘look west’, are sure to find many avenues for cooperation with their Indian counterparts.
Similarly, if Indian businesses study the immense possibilities and prospects in the Myanmar market, they will succeed in bringing up new projects and proposals, especially in renewable energy, power, light engineering, agro-products and machinery, IT, pharmaceuticals, healthcare and education sectors, the President added.
As both India and Myanmar are looking forward to diversifying trade and investment relations, the Enterprise exhibition focused on new ideas and options to expand the narrow bilateral trade and investment basket between the two South Asian countries.
India is also keen to forge new partnerships with Myanmar in the fields of digital economy, e-commerce, sustainable products and green solutions. And along with that, President Kovind noted that India must also focus on expanding its business networks from Yangon to Mumbai and from Mandalay to Manipur.
“We eagerly look forward to welcoming the Chief Minister of Yangon in Mumbai soon to connect our commercial capitals and to deepen business and banking partnerships,” the President added.
India has a multi-pronged approach to strengthen its economic and commercial relations with Myanmar. Through the infrastructure projects, India is enhancing connectivity between the two South Asian countries. And through Understandings and Agreements, India is facilitating land-border crossing for enhancing trade and tourism, President Kovind said.
The Indian President complemented both the countries for the on-going efforts to enhance trade and connectivity, especially after the signing of the Motor Vehicles Agreement. He once again assured that the agreement will open new possibilities for progress and prosperity for people living along the border. While the agreement would be a good source to seek goods and services more efficiently and economically for Myanmar, India, on the other hand, would exchange eco-friendly products made from bamboo, water hyacinth and other natural vegetation.
The Rashtrapati Bhavan here tweeted, “Motor Vehicles Agreement will open possibilities for people living along the border, for Myanmar to source goods and services more efficiently, and for us to exchange eco-friendly products made from bamboo, water hyacinth and other natural vegetation #PresidentKovind”
“I am happy that during my visit the Myanmar government has decided to extend visa-on-arrival-facility to Indian tourists arriving at Nay Pyi Taw, Yangon and Mandalay airports. This would give a major boost to our people-to-people exchanges and business ties,” the President noted.
President Kovind said that India understands the constraints faced by Myanmar in its process of nation-building. Myanmar is a country rich in human and natural resources. If the right regulatory environment is put into place, especially in the fields of energy, telecom, banking, insurance and healthcare, there is every reason for investment to flow into Myanmar and help it develop, grow and gallop, he added in his statement.
“I am glad that Myanmar is already reforming its policies to attract business and capital. The creation of a separate Ministry of Investment and Foreign Economic Relations is a welcome step. I hope it will be able to increase the attractiveness of Myanmar as an investment destination,” President Kovind said.
Speaking on capacity building and skills development, the Indian President reiterated that India is privileged to share its expertise and experience with Myanmar.
“Yesterday, I had the honour to dedicate the Advanced Centre for Agricultural Research and Education and the Rice Bio-park built with Indian assistance to the people of Myanmar. These facilities are geared to up-skill people to enhance their livelihood and farming choices. On similar lines, our businesses can engage with each other and open the world of the knowledge economy to the youth in this country,” President Kovind mentioned in his statement.
Earlier in the day, President Kovind along with wife Savita Kovind and granddaughter paid a visit to the mausoleum of the Bahadur Shah Zafar, the last emperor of Mughal dynasty. They also visited the Shri Kali temple in Yangon which is managed by a trust represented by the people who came to Myanmar from different regions of India.
The President, along with his ministerial delegation is scheduled to depart for India on the morning of December 14.