UNSTARRED QUESTION NO.2459
TO BE ANSWERED ON 24.03.2022
TARGETS OF ACT EAST POLICY
2459. MS. SUSHMITA DEV:
Will the Minister of External Affairs be pleased to state:
(a) the details of the targets of the "Act East Policy” announced in 2014 by Government;
(b) whether Government is on its way of achieving the aforementioned targets of the "Act East Policy”;
(c) if so, the details of all the projects undertaken, completed, on the way to being completed and that are going to be undertaken under the "Act East Policy”;
(d) if not, the reasons therefor; and
(e) the details of the amount of funds sanctioned and utilized under the "Act East Policy,” project-wise?
THE MINISTER OF STATE IN THE MINISTRY OF EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
[DR. RAJKUMAR RANJAN SINGH]
(a) & (b) India’s Act East Policy focuses on strengthening relations with India’s extended neighbourhood in the Indo-Pacific Region. The objective of Act East Policy is to promote economic cooperation, cultural ties and develop strategic relationships with countries in the Indo-Pacific region through continuous engagement at bilateral, regional and multilateral levels, thereby providing enhanced connectivity in its broadest sense, including political, economic, cultural and people-people relations. The policy which was originally conceived as an economic initiative, has gained political, strategic and cultural dimensions including establishment of institutional mechanisms for dialogue and cooperation.
With ASEAN at its core, India is robustly engaging countries of Southeast Asia, East Asia, South Asia & Oceania. India has Comprehensive Strategic Partnership with a number of countries in the region including Australia, Indonesia and Vietnam. It has Enhanced Strategic Partnership with Malaysia, Special Strategic Partnership with Republic of Korea (ROK) and Japan, and Strategic Partnership with Singapore and Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). Apart from ASEAN, ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) and East Asia Summit (EAS), we have also been actively engaged in/with other regional fora such as Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC), Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD), Mekong Ganga Cooperation (MGC), Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA), Indian Ocean Commission (IOC), Forum for India-Pacific Island Cooperation (FIPIC), all of which contribute to realization of India’s Act East Policy.
(c) to (e) Development cooperation is an important component of our engagement in the region. There is a specific focus on regional connectivity initiatives which act as force multipliers for regional growth and development while enhancing people to people contact and enhancing economic cooperation. While undertaking these projects, Indian expertise is showcased in project planning and implementation in a wide range of areas covering both infrastructure and socio-economic development. Developmental cooperation is carried out mainly through Lines of Credit, Grants-in-aid & capacity building programs. India has extended Lines of Credit to various countries in the region including US$ 619 million to Vietnam, US$ 226 million to Laos, US$ 102 million to Cambodia, US$ 100 million to Papua New Guinea. India’s development assistance to Myanmar is over USD 2 billion with majority of the projects being implemented under grant-in-aid. India provides annual grant-in-aid to the tune of USD 200,000 to each of the PICs. India also provides scholarships for capacity development of students and professionals from the countries in the region in a wide range of disciplines.
Some of the major ongoing projects include Kaladan Multi Modal Transit Transport Project, the India-Myanmar-Thailand Trilateral Highway Project, Port Connectivity with Thailand and Indonesia, Quick Impact Projects (QIP) under MGC framework, Scholarships and Fellowships, restoration and renovation of heritage cultural sites in Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam [CLMV], setting up of Satellite Tracking and Telemetry Centre (TTC) Image Processing Facility in Vietnam, establishment of Centre for Excellence in Software Development and Training in CLMV countries, Myanmar Institute of Information Technology (MIIT) in Mandalay and Advanced Centre for Agricultural Research and Education (ACARE) at Yezin Agricultural University in Nay Pyi Taw, setting up of Centres for Excellence in IT (CEITs) in Fiji, Cook Islands, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Niue and Vanuatu.