HÀ NỘI — India’s trade relations with Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Việt Nam (CLMV) have immense potential to flourish, said Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Cao Quốc Hưng.
Hưng delivered this remark during the opening ceremony of the fifth India-CLMV Business Conclave in Phnom Penh, Cambodia on Monday.
Close geographic distance, fast-growing economies and large and young populations have aided trade ties between India and CLMV countries, Hưng said.
These economies can support and complement each other.
India has strengths in capital, technology, new energy, renewable energy, education, pharmaceuticals and hi-tech products, while CLMV countries have advantages in textile and garments, footwear, farm produce, wood, minerals, vegetables and machinery parts.
They can also help each other penetrate deeply into larger markets, he added.
In his speech at the event, Hưng proposed several measures to accelerate economic and trade relations between India and CLMV countries.
Among them included improving the transport infrastructure connectivity, with a focus on bettering the connectivity of the northeastern of India and Myanmar – two important links to connect India and CLMV countries.
Top priority should be given to harmonising trade and investment policies and finance regulations between these four countries and facilitating the exchanges of professionals, he said.
India’s trade with CLMV countries has experienced significant growth over the years, from a modest US$460 million in 2000 to $4.97 billion in 2004 and $14.5 billion in 2017.
Currently, India is the largest trade partner of CLMV nations in South Asia.
However, there remain many challenges that hamper trade relations between India and CLMV nations such as differences in quality of infrastructure, a lack of connectivity, failure to meet demand of each other market and poor cross-border infrastructure.
Themed ‘India-CLMV Economic Development: Collaboration for Regional Integration,’ the fifth India-CLMV Business Conclave is a two-day programme which will consist of sessions discussing manufacturing, agro-forestry-fisheries, IT, education and health care. — VNS