India and ASEAN are together a home to 1.8 billion people, have a combined economy of US$ 3.8 trillion and a substantial share of world resources. With shared land and maritime boundaries, ASEAN-India relations are firmly embedded in Culture, Commerce and Connectivity. India's “Look East Policy” (LEP) was in force for more than two decades, and thereafter, it has been transformed into “Act East Policy” (AEP) with ASEAN at its core.
Strengthening India's economic relations with the countries in the East is one of the main objectives of India's 'Act East Policy' of the Government of India. Over 50% of India's foreign trade now goes to the East. In addition, India's bilateral trade with ASEAN is around US$72 billion in 2016-17. The two sides are now aiming to scale up bilateral trade to US$200 billion by 2022. India also has extensive and expanding trade relations with APEC economies, which account for 35% of India's merchandise trade. Realizing the importance given by India to ASEAN, the CII Southeast Asia office was opened in Singapore in 1994 to broaden the relationship between ASEAN nations and India.
The year 2017 marked 25 years of ASEAN-India dialogue partnership. To showcase the best in the regions and create a visible array of projects across the areas of collaboration, during the year 2017-18, several initiatives were undertaken by Confederation of Indian Industry in collaboration with Government of India.
“The ASEAN-India Initiatives 2017-18: Retrospect” highlights the key outcomes of various activities undertaken which include: ASEAN – India Cooperation on Textiles; 14th Global MSME Business Summit 2017: Focus – ASEAN; ASEAN – India Connectivity Summit and the ASEAN-India Business and Investment Meet and Expo.