IMPHAL, May 27: A joint delegation of a five member MP team of the Sub-Committee-II of the Parlia- mentary Standing Committee on Commerce led by its convenor former Union Textiles Minister and MP Kashiram Rana and fourteen officials arrived today at Imphal to monitor the activities of the Indo- Myanmar border trade in the State.
The five MPs are convenor Kashiram Rana Thennala G Balakrishna Pillai, Banwari Lal Kanchhal, E Ponnuswamy and Nikhilananda Sar.
Director of Rajya Sabha, Deputy Secretary and Under Secretary of Union Ministry of Commerce, Joint Director General of Foreign Trade, Executive Director of Shefexil, Executive Director (Cargo) of Airports Authority of India, New Delhi, Joint Commissioner (Customs) Shillong, Deputy Director General of Foreign Trade, Guwahati and two officials of the Ministry of Commerce are among the fourteen officials who are accompanying the MP delegation.
Soon after their arrival at Imphal from Guwahati, the joint delegation attended a joint meeting with the members of the Indo-Myanmar Border Trade Union, Manipur; Border Trade Chamber of Commerce and Indo-Myanmar Exim Association at Imphal Hotel here to discuss the issues related to border trade.
Officials of the Directorate of Commerce and Industries, Government of Manipur were also present in the meeting.
During the course of the meeting, three separate memorandums were also handed over to the Committee convenor Kashiram Rana from the side of the three Associations.
Main points highlighted in the memorandums include conversion of the barter system of the ongoing border trade to normal free trade, inclusion of more new trade items over and above the existing 22 items so as to increase the trade volume, introduction of letter of credit system, opening up of receipt payment counter at Imphal, setting up of a food testing laboratory and introduction of International bus service between Imphal and Mandalay.
Talking to mediapersons after the 2-hour long marathon meeting beginning from 3.30 pm, convenor of the Sub-Committee Kashi-ram Rana appreciated the contribution being made by various associations for development of border trade.
Kashiram informed that during the meeting, 21 issues were raised from the side of the trade associations and all the issues have been discussed thoroughly.
As to the problems being faced by the exporters and importers, Kashiram pointed out that the State Government should also try to initiate steps to ameliorate the difficulties of the exporters and importers.
While suggesting that there are various positive approaches in term of improvement of transport and communication facilities for development of border trade, Kashiram disclosed that the Sub-Committee would be submitting a report to the Union Govt and based on the report necessary steps are expected to be taken up by the Ministry of Commer-ce. A report would also be introduced in the monsoon session of the Parliament slated to begin in June, he assured. While staying at Imphal, the Committee members would be visiting Moreh tomorrow to get first hand acco- unt of the border trade activities there. After returning from Moreh tomorrow itself, the delegates would hold the night at Imphal before setting off for Tripura the following day.