Bangladesh, India Commerce Secretary-level Meeting Highlights Trade Growth, Progress in Connectivity Projects

4 March 2022

Bangladesh is now India's 6th largest trade partner. This significant growth in bilateral trade between the two countries was highlighted at the Commerce Secretary level meeting held on 4 March 2022 in New Delhi, India.  

According to the news release, the meeting held extensive discussions on issues of mutual interest, including development of railway infrastructure, port infrastructure, joint study on Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA), border haats, regional connectivity through multimodal transport, harmonization of standards, and mutual recognition agreement. 

The meeting noted progress on many items of cooperation, including the following:  

  • Approved detailed project proposal (DPP) for the development of a container handling facility at Sirajganj Bazar (Bangladesh); 
  • Construction of the new 900-meter siding line at Benapole (Bangladesh) for the India-Bangladesh freight trains;  
  • Construction of loading and unloading platform at Darshana (Bangladesh) that will allow import of all commodities from India by rail via Darshana; 
  • Approved DPP for rail- and road- based ICD at Ishwardi (Bangladesh); 
  • Consensus over the use of returning empty railway wagons/containers by Bangladesh to reduce overall logistics cost of India's exports to Bangladesh; 
  • Opening of border haats closed due to COVID-19 pandemic; 
    Implementation of Petrapole (India)-Benapole Integrated Check Post (ICP) 24x7 operation; 
  • ICP/Land Customs Stations progress; 
  • Strengthened regional connectivity through multimodal transport; 
  • Finalization of CEPA study at the earliest possible time; and
  • First meeting of the CEO forum. 

The meeting was preceded by the 14th meeting of the Joint Working Group (JWG) on Trade, at the level of Joint/Additional Secretaries of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Govt of India and Ministry of Commerce, Govt of Bangladesh on 2-3 March 2022 in New Delhi. Comprehensive discussions were held on various areas of mutual interest.  


Related links 

News release  

India, Bangladesh hold Commerce Secretary Level Meeting in New Delhi 

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