India, Myanmar complete 7th
round of discussions
Agree to boost ties to next
level and focus on energy and economy
Discuss pipeline but decision
Ignoring global initiatives to isolate Yangon, India and Myanmar concluded the
7th round of bilateral consultations and decided to take their energy and
economic ties to a new level by focusing their efforts on large infrastructure
projects. Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran, who was a former ambassador to
Myanmar, led the Indian delegation and the Myanmar side was led by Deputy
Foreign Minister U Kyaw Thu.
A Foreign Ministry statement said that "The talks covered the entire gamut of
India-Myanmar bilateral relations, with special emphasis on issues such as
security, energy, trade and economic cooperation and infrastructure projects."
Apparently, both sides explored options to realize the immense potential for
cooperation that exists in areas such as energy and trade. Specifically, they
discussed the Myanmar-Bangladesh-India pipeline languishing because of
continued lack of cooperation from Bangladesh.
They also discussed terrorism where insurgents from the northeast have used
Myanmar as a base to launch attacks on India. The statement said "The two took
stock of the common security challenges facing their respective countries and
stressed the need for keeping their borders peaceful and tranquil."
India announced that it has decided to build a port at Sittwe on the
Myanmar coast to give connectivity to the northeastern state of Mizoram.