Fourth Bangladesh-India-Japan conclave charts path for regional connectivity and development

The fourth edition of the Bangladesh-India-Japan tripartite conclave, titled “North East India, Bangladesh and the Bay of Bengal region in the Indo-Pacific: The Way Forward,” convened on Monday in Shillong. Organised by Asian Confluence in collaboration with India’s Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), the Embassy of Japan in India, and the North Eastern Council, the event saw extensive discussions on various critical themes.

The conclave featured panel discussions on topics such as “Towards Creating Industrial Value Chains: Voices from the Industry” and “Empowering Institutional Infrastructure for People Connectivity,” chaired by members of the Asian Confluence Governing Council, Ajay Sethi, and Riva Ganguly Das, respectively.

High-level dignitaries including Hiroshi Suzuki, Japan’s ambassador to India, and Mustafizur Rehman, the High Commissioner of Bangladesh to India, emphasised the need for actionable projects and mutually beneficial connectivity initiatives between India and Bangladesh. P Kumaran from the MEA underscored the impact of enhanced connectivity on the Bay of Bengal region, while K Moses Chalai of the North Eastern Council highlighted Bangladesh’s pivotal role in the future of Northeast India.

Meghalaya Chief Secretary Donald P Wahlang emphasised the potential of Northeast India to contribute significantly to India’s GDP by 2047, stressing the importance of infrastructure development. Representatives from Japanese institutions like JICA and JETRO contributed ideas to bolster connectivity in the Bay of Bengal region.

Political leaders from Northeast India, who previously visited Japan as part of a project by the Sasakawa Peace Foundation, proposed leveraging Japanese technology for regional development. Lalnghinglova Hmar, Mizoram’s minister of Sports and Youth Services, highlighted the state’s strengths to attract investments.

In closing remarks, Paul Lyngdoh, Meghalaya’s Tourism Minister, emphasised the role of youth in fostering people-to-people connectivity. Sabyasachi Dutta, Executive Director of Asian Confluence, stressed the significance of building partnerships in the Bay of Bengal region, with updates on connectivity progress between Northeast India and Bangladesh.


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