I was not expecting media coverage for the discussions on BIMSTEC in Bangkok over the weekend. But there was quite a comprehensive report in a Bangladesh publication.
Connectivity gaps, in terms of absent or insufficient road and rail connections, exist and need to be addressed and public-private partnerships can do so if handled intelligently, Samarajiva continued.
The government must be involved to clear rights of way and because they can raise low cost money for infrastructure, while private entities can mobilise competitiveness, which he considers crucial.
“Do not allow state monopolies to control them,” he said.
Roads must also be developed as ‘conduits for energy and communication, Samarajiva added. Standalone fiber optic cables are often located in remote areas and additional costs are incurred to get them to city centres, he said.
Instead this infrastructure must be developed alongside the road and railway systems to make more efficient use of their capabilities, he said.