India to set up a consulate in Arakan’s capital

Sittwe: India has planned to set up a consulate in Arakan State capital Sittwe, situated on the west coast near Bangladesh. It will become the second consulate in Sittwe from a foreign country after Bangladesh.

Bangladesh's consulate in Sittwe.

Bangladesh’s consulate in Sittwe.

It came out during the Indian external Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid visit to Myanmar on Friday.

The Indian External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid has been visiting Burma since Friday on his first bilateral trip abroad.

It seems to be intended to deal with the biggest India project, known as kaladan multi -modal transit transportation project which is being implemented in Arakan state.

“ We welcome the plan of India to set up a consulate in Sittwe. It is possible to directly deal with their project and the people of Arakan by opening consultant in Sittwe. It is intended to deal with the Kaladan multi-modal trsnsit transportation project,” U Aung Mra Kyaw, a lawmaker of Arakan state parliament.

India is involved in developing the $120-million Sittwe deep water port, which is due to become functional by June 2013. The port will allow cargo vessels from India’s landlocked Mizoram state to navigate the Kaladan river and connect them to Burma and southeast Asia.

The Indian External Affairs Minister also announced on Friday to donate $1 million towards relief in Arakan state which was rocked by widespread ethnic clashes leaving thousands displaced.

Khurshid called on President Thein Sein, Foreign Minister Wanna Maung Lwin and democracy icon Daw Aung San Suu Kyi during his trip in Burma.