The Union Cabinet chaired by the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi gave its approval to create a Project Development Fund (PDF) with a corpus of Rs.500 crore (about $ 75 million) for catalysing Indian economic presence in the Cambodia, Laos Myanmar and Vietnam (CLMV). The PDF shall be housed in Department of Commerce and operated through the EXIM Bank. The PDF shall be governed by an Inter-Ministerial Committee under the chairpersonship of the Commerce Secretary.
CLMV countries have a unique position in the regional value chains and offer a gateway for market access to China, the European Union and other markets due to various trade agreements. While opportunities are a plenty in CLMV region, Indian entrepreneurs' endeavors in these countries have, thus far, been limited due to limited information, infrastructure and other contingent risks. The PDF shall benefit India's industrial community for business expansion, and to maintain cost competitive supply chains, besides integrating with global production networks.
India's total trade with CLMV countries has grown tenfold over the past decade, from $1.1 billion in 2004 to $11.9 billion in 2014. According to a report from the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry, bilateral trade with Cambodia totaled about $160 million in 2014-15, an increase of about four percent from $154 million in 2013-14. The bilateral trade has already surpassed $189 million this year, largely due to the rapid growth of Cambodian exports.