Myanmar president to visit India


Yangon : Myanmar President U Thein Sein will pay a goodwill visit to India in the near future to promote bilateral relations and cooperation, said an official announcement here Monday.

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Thein Sein and his wife will pay the visit at the invitation of Indian President Pratibha Patil, the announcement said without giving the date of his visit, reported Xinhua.

Thein Sein’s forthcoming visit will be his first to India after assuming presidency March 30.

In 2006, Indian President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam visited Myanmar and in 2009, Indian Vice-President Hamid Ansari paid an official visit to the country.

According to official statistics, Myanmar-India bilateral trade reached $1.071 billion in 2010-11, with India standing as Myanmar’s fourth largest trading partner after Thailand, Singapore and China.

Of the total, Myanmar’s exports to India amounted to $876.91 million, while it imported goods valued at $194.92 million from India.

Agricultural products and forestry products are leading items in Myanmar’s exports to India whereas medicines and pharmaceutical products are topping its imports from India.

India stands as a major buyer of Myanmar’s beans, taking up 70 percent of the latter’s exports of agricultural produce.

Meanwhile, India’s contracted investment in Myanmar amounted to $189 million as of June 2011 since the government opened to foreign investment in 1988, of which $137 million were drawn into the oil and gas sector in 2007.

India stands 13th in Myanmar’s foreign investors’ line-up.