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Welcome to BCIM Car Rally 2013
The historic Kolkata-Kunming BCIM (Bangladesh, China, India and Bangladesh) Car Rally was flagged off by Smt Mamata Banerjee, Chief Minister of West Bengal, amid cheers by thousands of people and the tunes played by a military band at the Helipad Ground in the Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata on 22 February 2013.

About 80 BCIM Car Rally participants from Bangladesh, China, India and Myanmar, who are on an epic 3,000-km journey in 20 cars, are now on their way to the Chinese city of Kunming via Jessore, Dhaka, Sylhet, Silchar, Imphal, Ka Lay, Mandalay, Ruili, Tengchong, Erhai Lake, Dali. The BCIM Car Rally team will reach Kunming on 5 March 2013.

Smt Mamata Banerjee, who was the Chief Guest at the colourful Flag-Off Ceremony, revealed her passion for adventure and sports and hoped that this rally successfully develops trade and investment in the BCIM region. She described the participants as ‘ambassadors’ and said the rally would help generate awareness about the potential of West Bengal and North East India among the Asian countries.

The other dignitaries who attended the flag-off ceremony included Shri Madan Mitra, Minister of Sports and Transport, West Bengal, Mr Adi Godrej, President, CII, Ms Abida Islam, Deputy High Commissioner, Bangladesh Deputy High Commission in Kolkata, Mr Zhang Lizhong, Consul General, Consulate of People's Republic of China in Kolkata, Mr U Kyaw Swe Tint, Consul General, Consulate of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar in Kolkata, Mr R K Agrawal , Chairman, CII Eastern Region, Mr Chandrajit Banerjee, Director General, CII,Smt Riva Ganguly Das, Joint Secretary and Head of Public Diplomacy, Ministry of External Affairs, Mr K S Jamestin, Director (HR)-I/c BD&JV, ONGC, Shri B P Gopalika, Secretary, Department of Sports, Government of West Bengal.

The first edition of the 12-day BCIM Car Rally is being organised through the active participation of the BCIM partner countries of Bangladesh, China, India and Myanmar to promote trade and commerce, increase investment and encourage people-to-people contact in the BCIM region.

At the Flag-Off ceremony, Mr Adi Godrej, President, CII, said the rally seeks to retrace a legendary economic and trade route which has long been a strong bond between the peoples of this region. By revitalizing these ancient paths, the Rally would underscore the cultural and civilizational commonalities beside unveiling new horizons for economic and commercial cooperation on this 3,000-km route.

In this context, Mr Godrej stressed several measures to augment the efforts of the initiative to unleash the economic potentials of the region – fast tracking of BCIM process at the political level, regular summit level dialogues to come up with a road map and road shows by industries along the trade corridor.

Mr Chandrajit Banerjee, Director General, CII, revealed that with a combined population of about 2.8 billion of BCIM countries forms a formidable bloc of about $11 trillion economy. “Man and machines in this odyssey are indeed pioneers”, said Mr Banerjee.

Mr R K Agrawal, Chairman, CII, Eastern Region said, “The idea of the BCIM Forum is the result of an initiative of a number of institutions in the four involved countries which came together to set up a platform to foster, promote and deepen regional and sub-regional cooperation among the participating countries.”

Sponsored by Tata Motors, ONGC and Autocar, and supported by the governments of these four countries, the BCIM Car Rally comprising 80 participants from these countries, is being organised and coordinated by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) with several government departments, agencies and industrial houses, chipping in with all kinds of help and assistance.
The Route: Kolkata to Kunming
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