Two can play the game, eh?
Myanmar newspapers have reported that India will soon start a feasibility study on building a deepsea port in Dawei, in Myanmar’s southern Tanintharyi division. Subsequently, the Myanmar Ministry of Transport made clear that the Dawei deepsea-port project stands as one of the priorities among future programs of BIMST-EC, the Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka and Thailand-Economic Cooperation grouping (which was also joined by Bhutan and Nepal last July)…
Dawei, the capital of Tanintharyi division, is on a long, narrow coastal plain (bounded by the Andaman Sea in the east), which runs to Kawthaung, the most southerly point of Myanmar, and which then continues to the Malay Peninsula. Its location affords both economic and security benefits. Building Dawei port has a direct security angle for the Indian navy, which is now in the process of sorting out the technical and financial details of its ambitious Far Eastern Naval Command (FENC) project at Port Blair off the Andaman and Nicobar Islands coast.
FENC will extend the navy’s nuclear/strategic combat capability and aid in getting it “blue water” status. Dawei is located across the Andaman Sea on the Myanmar coast almost facing the FENC. India has another, more specifically economic interest in Dawei port. Last January, India reached agreement in principle with Myanmar and Bangladesh on the construction and operation of a pipeline that will bring natural gas from Myanmar to India via Bangladesh, according to reports by the Alexander Gas & Oil company newsletter. [Asia Times]