MEAs Allocated Rs 22,154 Crore in Union Budget 2024-25/iStock
MEAs Allocated Rs 22,154 Crore in Union Budget 2024-25
The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) received an allocation of Rs 22,154 crore for the fiscal year 2024-25 in the Union Budget, marking an increase from the previous year’s outlay of Rs 18,050 crore. This boost aligns with India’s ‘Neighbourhood First’ policy, with a substantial share allocated to aid for Bhutan, emphasizing the country’s commitment to regional partnerships.
Focus on ‘Neighbourhood First’ Policy:
In line with India’s commitment to its neighbors, Bhutan received the largest share of aid with an allocation of Rs 2,068 crore, reaffirming the ‘Neighbourhood First’ policy. Additionally, the allocation for Chabahar Port was maintained at Rs 100 crore, showcasing India’s dedication to connectivity projects with Iran.
Development Assistance Across Regions:
While the development assistance to the Maldives saw a slight reduction to Rs 600 crore from the previous year’s Rs 770 crore, Afghanistan received a budgetary aid of Rs 200 crore. Bangladesh is set to receive Rs 120 crore under development aid, Nepal Rs 700 crore, Sri Lanka Rs 75 crore, Mauritius Rs 370 crore, and Myanmar Rs 250 crore. A separate allocation of Rs 200 crore has been earmarked for African countries, emphasizing India’s global engagement.
IMEC as a Strategic and Economic Game Changer:
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman highlighted the significance of the India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor (IMEC) as a strategic and economic game-changer for India and its allies. The IMEC is positioned as a response to China’s Belt and Road Initiative, aiming to establish strategic influence through transparent and sovereign-focused initiatives.
The total development assistance to various countries and regions, including Latin America and Eurasia, is pegged at Rs 4,883 crore, showcasing India’s commitment to fostering global partnerships and economic cooperation.