Act East Policy focuses on strengthening India's relations with countries in the immediate and extended neighbourhood to the east. ASEAN-India Plan of Action (2016-20) adopted at the 13th ASEAN-India Foreign Ministers' Meeting held in Kuala Lumpur in August 2015 and endorsed by Leaders at the 13th ASEAN-India Summit held in Kuala Lumpur in November 2015, provides for a road map for cooperation between ASEAN and India across three pillars (a) political security (b) economic and (c) socio-cultural. A number of activities are held under the Plan of Action (2016-20) in all three spheres to promote ASEAN-India relations. A few of them have taken place in the North-Eastern states, e.g. ASEAN-India Youth Summit held in Guwahati, Assam on 5-7 February 2019. ASEAN-India trade in the year 2017-18 stood at USD 81.33 billion, registering a jump of 13.64% over the year 2016-17.
The focus has been on the development and prosperity of the North Eastern states by improving connectivity, access and facilities to the region through various initiatives including improving connectivity of North East Region with Bangladesh, improving access to North East from Myanmar to facilitate tourism and cross border connectivity, promotion of Land Border Crossing Agreement and Integrated Check Post at Moreh and infrastructure projects like India-Myanmar-Thailand trilateral highway, Kaladan Multi Modal Transit Transport Project in Myanmar.
Various projects are undertaken from Indo-Pacific Division's (formerly ASEAN ML Division) budget, and ASEAN-India Fund (AIF), ASEAN-India Green Fund (AIGF) and ASEAN-India Science & Technology Development Fund (AISTDF) which have been set up by Government of India for undertaking joint projects with ASEAN Member States. These Funds are rolling funds and are replenished on need basis.
Under the 3 Lines of Credit worth about USD 8 billion extended by India to Bangladesh, GoI has undertaken several projects to enhance connectivity with our North East Region through Bangladesh.
India has disbursed around US $ 1.04 billion in grant projects, and has extended concessional loans of US $ 478.9 million from India’s LOC amount of around US $750 million to Myanmar. Projects on grant funding include connectivity infrastructure projects like Kaladan Multi Modal Transit Transport Project, upgradation of 69 bridges and building the Kalewa Yargi road segment on the Trilateral Highway. Our Line of Credit projects include purchase of railway engines and rolling stock, establishment of data link, telecommunication projects etc.
This information was provided by the Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Development of North-Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh in written reply to a question in Lok Sabha today.