K2K Economic Corridor: Kolkata (India) and Kunming (China) Economic Corridor
The term K2K Economic Corridor was in news in the fourth week of June 2015 as China announced that the main artery of the corridor is nearly completed.
The 2800 km long corridor is at the core of the Bangladesh, India, China and Myanmar-Economic Corridor (BCIM-EC) initiated by four countries in 2014.
Objective of the Corridor
• At the macro level, the corridor is aimed at deepening friendly cooperation among the four member nations.
• The primary focus of the economic corridor is to facilitate trade and connectivity between the landlocked and underdeveloped southwestern parts of China and the North Eastern region of India.
• It will link South Asia with Southeast and East Asia by building multi-modal connectivity, harnessing economic complementaries and enhancing people-to-people relations.
Route map of the Corridor
• From Kolkata, the corridor will head towards Benapole, a border town in Bangladesh. After passing through Dhaka and Sylhet, it will re-enter the Indian territory near Silchar in Assam.
• From Assam, the passage will be connected with Imphal and then pass through the India-built Tamu-Kalewa friendship road in Myanmar before passing through a small stretch in Arunachal Pradesh.
• In Myanmar, the corridor will pass through Lahiso and Muse prior to Mandalay.
• The Chinese stretch extends from Ruili before reaching Kunming, capital of Yunnan province, through Longling and Dali.
• China also wants to include Mizoram as part of the corridor so that the K2K corridor will be connected with the Kaladan Project.
How addition of Kaladan project will be beneficial to India?
Under the Kaladan Multi-modal Transit Transport Project, initiated in 2008, Mizoram will be connected with Myanmar’s port of Sittwe, through the Kaladan River.
Addition of Kaladan project will facilitate northeastern states in India to get easier access to Kolkata, compared with the land route, located just 539 km away.
It will also reduce reliance of China on the Straits of Malacca (to reach the Indian Ocean) that is militarily dominated by the USA.
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