India–Myanmar–Thailand Trilateral Highway (IMT Highway), 1,360 km (850 mi) long route, is a highway under upgrade under India’s Look East policy that will connect Moreh, India with Mae Sot, Thailand via Myanmar.
Imphal-Mandalay-Bangkok 1,813 km (1,127 mi) route, consisting of Imphal-Mandalay 584 km (363 mi) and Mandalay-Bangkok 1,397 km (868 mi), is a highway in good condition except for 101 km (63 mi) part of 120 km (75 mi) long Kalewa-Yagyi stretch being upgraded to 2-lane in each direction (total 4 lanes) highway by India.
The road is expected to boost trade and commerce in the ASEAN–India Free Trade Area, as well as with the rest of Southeast Asia.
India has also proposed extending the highway to Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam. The proposed approx 3,200 km (2,000 mi) route from India to Vietnam is known as the East-West Economic Corridor (Thailand to Cambodia and Vietnam became operational in 2015).
This highway will also connect to the river ports being developed along the way at Kalay (also called Kalaymyo) and Monywa on Chindwin River.
India and ASEAN have plans to extend this route to Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam as this connectivity will generate annually, an estimated US$70 billion in incremental GDP and 20 million in incremental aggregate employment by 2025, and India has offered US$1 billion line-of-credit for the India-ASEAN connectivity projects (Dec 2017).
In December 2020, Bangladesh expressed official interest to join the highway project in order to boost connectivity from Dhaka. The existing BBIN motor vehicle agreement facilitates reduced border controls and customs inspection for freight transport between India and Bangladesh.
The highway is country’s second prime international road project for India, the first being Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal (BBIN) project. The project also helps to thicken Indian position as a counterweight to the strategic influence of the People’s Republic of China in the region.
The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has been appointed as the technical executing agency and project management consultant for the project.
Estimated budget for the completion of construction of IMT trilateral highway section between India and Myanmar is INR 1,177 crore.