News List

Compiled features on recent developments in regional cooperation and integration in the SASEC region.

March 2023

FDI Powers Economic Growth in Developing Countries

Foreign direct investment is effective in promoting economic development according to International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) Bangladesh President Mahbubur Rahman, speaking at the webinar "Into the Centenary Year: ICC Court visits ICC Bangladesh." Bangladesh is South Asia's second-largest economy and is slated to graduate from the least developed country (LDC) category in November 2026.

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Tags: FDI, Bangladesh, SASEC, Economic Corridor Development

October 2022

Bangladesh Signs Contracts for SASEC Dhaka-Sylhet Highway Expansion

The Bangladesh Roads and Highways Department signed a contract for road expansion work under the SASEC Dhaka-Sylhet Corridor Road Development Project. The contracted work will expand the 35-kilometer section of the national highway between Narayanganj and Narsingdi districts from two to six lanes to ease traffic.

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Tags: ADB, Bangladesh, SASEC, Economic Corridor Development

October 2022

Sri Lanka to Cooperate with India on Trincomalee Port Development

Sri Lanka President Ranil Wickremesinghe visited the eastern port district of Trincomalee to inspect its integrated development plan. During his visit, he emphasized the need for India and Sri Lanka to cooperate to develop the Trincomalee port on the country’s northeastern coast.

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Tags: India, Sri Lanka, Economic Corridor Development, Ports, Trincomalee

April 2022

Gorai Flyover along SASEC Highway in Bangladesh Opened in Time for Eid al-Fitr Holiday

The Gorai flyover in Mirzapur upazila, Tangail, was opened to traffic on April 25, 2022. "The flyover will ensure smooth movement of vehicles," said Mr. Noor-e-Alam, additional director of South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation (SASEC)-1 project, Bangladesh Roads and Highways Department.

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Tags: Bangladesh, SASEC, Road Transport, ADB, Economic Corridor Development

December 2021

Thailand Transport Ministry Unveils Planned Shipping Routes along East Corridor

The Ministry of Transport of Thailand has released a route map for its national shipping line. The route is part of the country's plan to connect the Southern Economic Corridor with a land bridge linking Chumphon on the eastern coast of the Gulf of Thailand to Ranong on the Andaman Sea, which will serve as a transit port connecting the Pacific and Indian Oceans.

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Tags: Thailand, BIMSTEC, Economic Corridor Development

August 2021

ADB Approves $1.78 Billion for SASEC Dhaka-Sylhet Corridor to Improve Transport and Regional Trade in Bangladesh

ADB has approved a $1.78 billion loan to improve regional trade along the Dhaka–Sylhet trade corridor in Bangladesh. The project, under the SASEC program, will support trade by helping connect Chattogram Port with India's northeastern states.

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Tags: ADB, Bangladesh, Road, SASEC, Economic Corridor Development, Trade

April 2021

Bangladesh Minister Pushing for Start of Chittagong-Cox's Bazar Road Work

Mr. Obaidul Quader, Road Transport and Bridges Minister, Bangladesh, is pushing to begin work to upgrade the Chittagong-Cox's Bazar Highway. The road, one of the busiest in Bangladesh, will be widened to four-lanes to ease traffic along the route and improve subregional connectivity.

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Tags: Road, Economic Corridor Development, Transport, Bangladesh

April 2021

ADB Loan to Spur Growth along Tamil Nadu Industrial Corridor

The Asian Development Bank has approved a $484-million loan for a project to improve transport connectivity along the Chennai–Kanyakumari Industrial Corridor (CKIC) in Tamil Nadu, India, to strengthen industrial growth and create jobs along the corridor. The CKIC is part of India’s East Coast Economic Corridor, which stretches from West Bengal to Tamil Nadu and connects to Southeast Asia and East Asia.

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Tags: ADB, Regional Cooperation, SASEC, Transport, Economic Corridor Development, East Coast Economic Corridor

September 2020

Bangladesh Approves SASEC Highway Project

The Bangladesh Executive Committee of the National Economic Council has approved a road expansion program through the SASEC Road Link Project II: Elenga-Hatikamrul-Rangpur Highway Four-Lane Upgradation. The project will be part of a road network connecting Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal that would increase trade and commerce in the subregion.

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Tags: Bangladesh, Bhutan, Economic Corridor Development, India, Nepal, SASEC, Transport

April 2020

Explainer: How Blockchain Can Improve Supply Chain Transparency in Maldives

Maldives is studying the use of high-level technologies to support a national window system to make international trade easier and more efficient. Through the South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation National Single Window Project, Maldives is introducing blockchain technology to improve trade facilitation and management of local and regional supply chains.

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Tags: Bangladesh, Economic Corridor Development, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Regional Integration, Trade, Transport

December 2019

New BIMSTEC Connectivity Plan to Ensure Seamless Movement of Goods and People

A new Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) connectivity master plan aims to ensure seamless movement of goods and people, improve transport interconnectivity, and promote cultural exchange.

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Tags: Bangladesh, BIMSTEC, Economic Corridor Development, India, Trade

September 2019

Commentary: Adopting Economic Corridors as a Development Strategy

Economic corridor development is an effective policy that could promote sustainable growth in Bangladesh. It is a tool that enables the proliferation of industry, creates jobs, upgrades infrastructure, and links production centers with global value chains. It also helps create markets in lagging regions.

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Tags: Bangladesh, Economic Corridor Development, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Regional Integration, Trade, Transport

May 2019

Bangladesh Prime Minister Hasina Opens SASEC Flyovers, Underpasses, Bridges

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the Konabary and Chandra flyovers; the Kaliakair, Deohata, Mirzapur, and Gharinda underpasses; and the Kadda-1 and Bimail bridges on the Joydebpur-Chandra-Tangail-Elenga highway under the South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation countries (SASEC) road connectivity project.

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Tags: Bangladesh, Economic Corridor Development, SASEC, Transport

May 2018

Planned Multimodal Linkages to Turn Silchar into a Transport Hub

Plans are being drafted to turn Silchar, a city in Assam, India, into a logistics hub. Multimodal transport linkages from Silchar to Myanmar and to Bangladesh are being considered, in line with the Government of India's "Act East" policy. These will decongest Guwahati and place Silchar at the forefront of growing economic relations between India's northeastern states and Bangladesh and the countries in Southeast Asia.

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Tags: India, Act East Policy, Myanmar, Bangladesh, Thailand, Economic Corridor Development

December 2017

SASEC Investment Grows to $10.74 billion

The SASEC Program ended 2017 on a high note, having launched the SASEC Vision, welcomed Myanmar as a full member of SASEC, invested almost $1 billion in three new projects during the year, and seen total program investment rise to $10.74 billion for 49 loan/grant projects. The SASEC Vision paved the way in 2017 for strengthened partnership and economic cooperation between the countries of South Asia and Southeast Asia, by leveraging opportunities and synergies found in natural resources.

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Tags: SASEC, Myanmar, Trade Facilitation, Energy, Economic Corridor Development

November 2017

Speech: Accelerating RCI in Asia and the Pacific for Economic Growth, Shared Prosperity, and Sustainability

In his keynote address at the ADB Regional Cooperation and Integration Week, ADB President Takehiko Nakao stated that regional cooperation is critical to securing Asia’s economic future. He noted ADB’s continued commitment to support regional cooperation as a means to reduce inequality and overcome infrastructure gaps, and cited specific SASEC projects as effective examples. The ADB Regional Cooperation and Integration Week was held on 27-29 November 2017, in Manila, Philippines.

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Tags: ADB, ASEAN, Economic Corridor Development, Energy, Myanmar, Regional Cooperation, SASEC, Transport, World Bank, WTO

October 2017

Comprehensive Development Plan for Bangladesh Economic Corridor Submitted to the Government

The Asian Development Bank has submitted the Comprehensive Development Plan for the proposed Southwest Bangladesh Economic Corridor to the Government of Bangladesh. This strategic framework document will guide the efficient implementation of economic corridor projects, integrating industry, urban, infrastructure, and regulatory frameworks.

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Tags: ADB, Bangladesh, Economic Corridor Development

August 2017

Commentary: Blending Labor Advantage with High-tech Innovation

This commentary on the interim report for the Southwest Bangladesh Economic Corridor by Mr. M. Rokonuzzaman Ph.D, Professor, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, North South University, Bangladesh, highlights the need for Bangladesh to boost its labor advantage with high-tech innovation to create high-paying jobs for millions of university graduates, ultimately driving the country toward its goal of achieving high-income status by 2041.

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Tags: ADB, Bangladesh, Economic Corridor Development

May 2017

Watch: Powering Asia in the 21st Century

The SASEC Vision lays out opportunities through industry linkages and regional trade:

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Tags: SASEC 2025, Regional Cooperation, Trade Facilitation, Transport, Energy, Economic Corridor Development

April 2017

Bangladesh Wants to Be South Asia’s Transport Hub

Bangladesh has the potential to become a transport hub for India, Bhutan, Nepal, Maldives, Sri Lanka, and Myamar, according to Mr. AMA Muhith, Finance Minister, Bangladesh. Turning Bangladesh into a regional and transshipment hub would enhance economic cooperation and result in collective economic growth for the countries, Mr. Muhith said at the SASEC Finance Ministers’ Meeting in New Delhi, India.

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Tags: Bangladesh, Bhutan, Economic Corridor Development, Energy, ICT, India, Nepal, Maldives, Myanmar, SASEC, South Asia, Sri Lanka, Trade Facilitation, Transport, Regional Cooperation

February 2017

Commentary: Connecting Asia's Growth Poles

Mr. Wencai Zhang, Asian Development Bank Vice President, discusses in this commentary how Asia’s growth poles will drive the global economy in the coming years, if South Asia, Southeast Asia, and East Asia can dynamically integrate their economies. He emphasized the urgent need to synch strengths across sub-regions—by removing non-tariff barriers, strengthening connectivity, and building economic corridors—to help erase poverty in the region.

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Tags: ADB, Myanmar, Bangladesh, Connectivity, Economic Corridor Development

July 2016

SASEC Investment Projects Top $7.7 Billion

South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation (SASEC) investment projects increased to a cumulative $7.66 billion in the areas of transport, energy, trade facilitation, and ICT with the recent approval of India’s Bihar New Ganga Bridge Project. To date, 40 SASEC-supported projects are helping member countries strengthen regional connectivity infrastructure, promote economic growth, and foster regional cooperation. In addition, there are now 71 technical assistance projects worth $66.14 mi

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Tags: SASEC, Energy, Trade Facilitation, Transport, South Asia, ADB, ICT, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Economic Corridor Development

July 2016

ADB Blog: Why Economic Corridor Development is the Way Forward for South Asia

The economic corridor development (ECD) strategy is an approach that integrates and synergizes industry, infrastructure, and urbanization through meticulous planning over a long-term horizon. An Asian Development Bank (ADB) blog post by Mr. Hoe Yun Jeong, Senior Economist (Regional Cooperation), South Asia Regional Department, published on 26 July 2016, shares how an ECD approach can be beneficial for the South Asia region.

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Tags: Economic corridor, India, Vizag-Chennai Industrial Corridor, South Asia, East Coast Economic Corridor, Economic Corridor Development, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka

March 2016

Manipur Chief Minister Flags Off Imphal-Kangchup-Tamenglong Road Project

Construction of a new road from Imphal City to Tamenglong via Kangchup was officially inaugurated by Manipur Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh. The 103-kilometer road improvement is part of a larger program to improve a key strategic thoroughfare on the Asian Highway, integrating South and Southeast Asia, bordering Bangladesh, Bhutan, Myanmar, and Nepal. It is funded by an Asian Development Bank loan, approved in March 2014.

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Tags: India, Asian Highway, Transport, Economic Corridor Development