News List

Compiled features on recent developments in regional cooperation and integration in the SASEC region.

Year:
March 2020

Bangladesh Approves Revised Protocol on Inland Water, Transit, and Trade

The Bangladesh cabinet approved the draft of the second revision of the Protocol on Inland Water, Transit and Trade. This draft amends the existing agreement between Bangladesh and India on raising the number of ports of call between the two countries to deepen trade via waterways.

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March 2020

Survey on India–Bhutan Railway Connectivity Commissioned

India's Ministry of Railways has commissioned a survey to establish a cross-border railway link between India and Bhutan. The planned route is on Mujnai (India)–Nyoenpaling (Bhutan).

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February 2020

India and Myanmar Reiterate Commitments to Boost Trade and Connectivity

Mr. Win Myint, President of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar paid a State Visit to India, upon the invitation of Mr. Ram Nath Kovind, President of the Republic of India. The visit emphasized importance of connectivity. It also affirmed their commitments to expedite the completion of various India-funded projects ongoing in Myanmar, and underscored the need to further facilitate the easy movement of passenger and cargo traffic between the two countries.

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Tags: India, Myanmar, Connectivity

February 2020

Bangladesh to Implement Initiatives to Expedite Trade Procedures

The Government of Bangladesh will introduce procedures to fast-track processing of cross-border trade in Bangladeshi ports. Beginning July, Bangladesh will implement a pre-arrival processing of import documents. Once this is in place, cargo shippers will need to submit an import general manifest and bill of lading to the Customs authority for processing once they depart a port en route to Bangladesh’s ports.

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Tags: Bangladesh, Trade Facilitation, Shipping

February 2020

Mongla Port Capacity Enhancement to Ease Facilitation of Bhutan, India, and Nepal Transit Goods

The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council, chaired by Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, approved the proposal to enhance the capacity of Mongla port. The project is estimated to cost Tk 6,015 crore (around $710.79 million). Mongla port can be used to facilitate transit of goods to and from Bhutan, India, and Nepal. Increasing its capacity will hopefully encourage the three countries to use it further for transit of goods.

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Tags: Bangladesh, Shipping, Transit Facilitation

February 2020

Bangladesh-Nepal Relations Reviewed in Visit of Nepal Foreign Minister

Mr. Pradeep Kumar Gyawali, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Government of Nepal, went on an official visit to Bangladesh in February 2020. His meetings included bilateral talks with Mr. AK Abdul Momen, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Government of Bangladesh on 18 February, and a courtesy call to Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on 19 February.

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Tags: Bangladesh, Nepal, Trade, Transit Facilitation, Transport

February 2020

Imphal-Mandalay Bus Service to Start in April

India and Myanmar are launching the Imphal (Manipur, India)–Mandalay (Myanmar) bus service to further promote tourism and people-to-people visits. On 7 April 2020, the new passenger bus route will be inaugurated in Mandalay in a ceremony flagging off a bus bound for Imphal. On 8 April, a bus bound for Mandalay will be flagged off from Imphal. The Shwe Mandalar Express Company Limited from Yangon and Seven Sisters Holidays from Imphal partnered to operate the bus route.

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Tags: India, Myanmar, Connectivity, Transport

February 2020

Inland Waterways to Help Channel Economic Activity along the Ganga River

Inland waterways is an important pillar of ‘Arth-Ganga,’ a project that aims to channelize economic activity along the banks of Ganga River to promote inclusive growth for India and generate enormous employment opportunities. The project is being implemented by the Ministry of Shipping of the Government of India.

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Tags: Inland waterways, India, Nepal, Trade Facilitation, Logistics

February 2020

Experts Call for Energy Cooperation among BIMSTEC Countries

Policymakers and experts have begun discussions on the creation of a regional power grid for Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) member countries.

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Tags: BIMSTEC, Bangladesh, Cooperation, Energy, Nepal

February 2020

ADB Facility to Boost Transport Connectivity in Bangladesh

The Asian Development Bank has approved $42 million facility for project readiness financing (PRF) to improve transport connectivity in Bangladesh. The PRF will promote multimodal transport and support project preparation for road and railway projects and to help the country meet its growing transport needs.

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Tags: ADB, Bangladesh, Rail, SASEC, Transport

February 2020

Bangladesh, India, and Nepal Move to Finalize Connectivity Network

Representatives from Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal (BBIN) met in New Delhi, India, on 8 February 2020 to discuss and push for the finalization of the BBIN Motor Vehicles Agreement.

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Tags: BBIN, Motor Vehicles Agreement, Transport, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal,

January 2020

Bangladesh, India to Upgrade the Ashuganj-Akhaura road

The Governments of Bangladesh and India signed an agreement to upgrade the 50.58-kilometer long road between Ashuganj river port and the Akhaura land port in Bangladesh into a four-lane highway. The project will be developed under the $2 billion line of credit extended by India to Bangladesh in 2016.

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January 2020

Second Integrated Check Post along India-Nepal Border Inaugurated

India Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Nepal Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli jointly inaugurated the Integrated Check Post at the Jogbani (India)-Biratnagar (Nepal) border via video conference. The check post was built with Indian assistance of $19.64 million (around NPR 2.24 billion). It houses Customs, Immigration, and Border Security.

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January 2020

Commentary: Inland Waterways – Positive Impact on Economy

Inland waterways could significantly reduce the cost of transporting goods and transit time, and decongest highways. In this piece, Mr. Debasish Mallick, the former Deputy Managing Director of EXIM Bank of India and Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Industrial Development Bank of India Asset Management Company Ltd, discusses how inland waterways could benefit the Indian economy.

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January 2020

Bangladesh, India Commerce Secretaries Discuss CEPA

The Governments of Bangladesh and India held a Commerce Secretary-level meeting. They discussed the proposed bilateral Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA), a free trade agreement to boost trade between Bangladesh and India. The two countries have undertaken a joint study to learn its potential benefits.

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January 2020

Akhaura-Agartala Railway Link to be Operational in 2020

Mr. Hasan Mahmud, Information Minister of Bangladesh, and Mr. Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, External Affairs Minister of India, underscored in a meeting that completion of the Akhaura (Bangladesh)-Agartala (India) railway link will increase cross border connectivity. The neighboring countries expressed the mutual view to finish this railway at the soonest possible time. People-to-people linkages, business and tourism are set to benefit once the railway finishes.

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