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'Northeast is at the heart of Act East Policy,' says PM Modi

By Chennabasaveshwar

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said India's growth story will pick up more speed when people living in North East region will see fast development in a balanced manner. He was speaking after inaugurating 'Advantage Assam - Global Investors Summit 2018', in Guwahati.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Guwahati. Courtesy: @CMOfficeAssam

PM Modi said, "We created the Act East Policy and the Northeast is at the heart of it. The Act East Policy requires increased people to people contact, trade ties and other relations with countries on India's east, particularly ASEAN countries."

"The tagline of this Summit is very appropriate and gives a big Message. 'Advantage Assam: India's Express way to ASEAN' is not just a Statement but it is a comprehensive Vision," he said.

"Assam is ranked first among the North Eastern States in the Ease of Doing Business report. With the present leadership of the State Government, Assam is going to further improve its current position to emerge as one of the most sought after states for investment."

Talking about the recent announcements in the budget, he said 45-50 crore people will benefit from the health insurance scheme Ayushman Bharat and it has enhanced the possibilities of setting up hospitals in tier II and III cities by hospital chains. The new target for the Ujjwala scheme of providing free cooking gas has now been fixed at eight crore women, the PM said.

Assam CM Sarbanand Sonwal said, "Advantage Assam is not just a summit rather is an effort to bring focus on the advantages that Assam enjoy in many sectors.

"For realising the potential of Assam, Advantage Assam is our sincere efforts to turn the State into a prime hub of economic activity and to explore all possibilities with Southeast Asia by reviving our age-old links with the region, said Sonwal.

Those present at the event included Bhutanese PM Tshering Tobgay, several Union ministers, Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, chief ministers of Arunachal Pradesh and Manipur, ambassadors and high commissioners of 16 countries, RIL chairman Mukesh Ambani, Tata Sons chairman N Chandrasekharan besides other.

The maiden Global Investors Summit in Assam scheduled on Feb 3-4, 2018. The Summit is focussed on vital sectors including power, agriculture and food processing, IT, transportation, petrochemicals, pharmaceuticals, textiles & handicrafts and tourism. Such a summit will contribute towards fulfilling the aspirations of Assam's youth.

Indian Oil Corporation will invest Rs 3,400 crore in Assam over the next five years to expand its operations by setting up new units as well as upgrading the existing ones, a senior IOC official said today. The company will sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Assam Government.

(With agency inputs)

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