Mizo varsity starts first Summer School

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Aizawl, May 7: Mizoram Governor Lt Gen (Rtd) M M Lakhera today inaugurated the first Summer School in the state, jointly organised by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) India Programme and the Department of Economics, Mizoram University.

The 28-day Summer School aims at creating awareness among Mizo scholars, businessmen and professionals regarding world trade and studying avenues for trade and business that could be tapped within Mizoram and capacity building for trade development.

In his inaugural address, the Governor said the world was experiencing a boom in communication, trade and business.

''Although profit is the main aim of all businesses, in today's world where the gap between the haves and the have-nots has increased so much, policy-makers must keep in mind that if the gap is not reduced, our country could be heading for disaster,'' Mr Lakhera cautioned.

He advocated that the infrastructure facilities of the less-developed countries must be developed.

''What is most important, however, is to study our land properly, identify our potential for trade and frame policies that best suit us,'' he added.

The Governor also said the work culture of the country was responsible for underdevelopment, despite there being no dearth of either manpower or expertise in the country.

''What worked for the Western countries might not necessarily be the best option for us. Hence, the professionals, scholars and experts participating in the Summer School should use this platform to study, survey and bring out results which can help in forming a better trade policy for the state,'' the Governor said.

The Summer School is a follow-up to a partnership agreement signed between the UNCTAD and Mizoram University on December 19, 2007, for a project of ''enhancing trade-related research capacity amongst university and individual researchers.'' University sources said a budget of Rs 25 lakh had been allocated for the first year of the two-year project which has Professor Lianzela of the varsity as the project director.

''Depending on the performance in the first year, the UNCTAD will allocate Rs 22 lakh in the second year,'' Prof Lianzela told UNI.

For the first activity under the project, a seminar on ''Introduction to trade database and modeling of international trade'' was jointly organised by UNCTAD and MzU on December 19, 2007, for the benefit of Post-Graduate teachers, research scholars and college lecturers, who were instructed by resources persons from UNCTAD (Geneva and India) and professors from Jadavpur and Manipur Universities.

Three doctoral researchers were awarded a one-year fellowship with effect from January 1.

The project was expected to be of great benefit to PG teachers, researchers, teachers of MzU in particular and the people of Mizoram as a whole, Mr Lianzela said.


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