SASEC News

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

Year:  

June 2017
India to Link Meghalaya-Myanmar, Boost Waterway Transit

The Government of India plans to begin construction of the highway connecting Meghalaya to Myanmar in June 2017, according tothe Ministry of Road Transport, Highways, and Shipping, India. India also plans to boost waterway transit for more cost-effective transport of goods, and is considering waterway connectivity between Myanmar and Bangladesh.


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Tags:  TransportIndiaMyanmarBangladeshSoutheast Asia
 

May 2017
Need to Improve Bangladesh-India Port Services Highlighted by IBCCI

A delegation of the India-Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce and Industry (IBCCI) met with Mr. Shajahan Khan, Shipping Minister, Bangladesh, to discuss trade bottlenecks in Bangladesh-India land ports. Infrastructural and administrative bottlenecks in land and sea ports of Bangladesh and India slows down the trade process. Long delays for trucks to pass through Customs, for example, results in shortages of warehouses and trucks, and skyrocketing prices in truck rentals.


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Tags:  IndiaBangladeshTrade FacilitationTransport
 

May 2017
SAARC Finance Ministers Meet in Yokohama, Japan

Finance ministers and senior officials of member countries of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC), including Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka met on 5 May at Yokohama, Japan, at the sidelines of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) 50th Annual General Meeting.


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Tags:  ADBBangladeshBhutanCentral AsiaClimate ChangeEnergyIndiaMaldivesNepalPolicyRegional CooperationSAARCSASECSri LankaTradeTransport
 

April 2017
Connectivity Needed for BIMSTEC to Succeed

The BIMSTEC region hosts 21% of the world’s population and holds great potential for trade. Experts at the Conference on Facilitating Connectivity in Bay of Bengal Region held in Dhaka, Bangladesh, stressed the importance of regional connectivity for BIMSTEC to succeed and to facilitate economic growth among BIMSTEC member countries.


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Tags:  BIMSTECASEANSAARCRegional CooperationCooperationBangladesh
 

April 2017
Bangladesh Wants to Be South Asia’s Transport Hub

Bangladesh has the potential to become a transport hub for India, Bhutan, Nepal, Maldives, Sri Lanka, and Myamar, according to Mr. AMA Muhith, Finance Minister, Bangladesh. Turning Bangladesh into a regional and transshipment hub would enhance economic cooperation and result in collective economic growth for the countries, Mr. Muhith said at the SASEC Finance Ministers’ Meeting in New Delhi, India.


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Tags:  BangladeshBhutanEconomic Corridor DevelopmentEnergyICTIndiaNepalMaldivesMyanmarSASECSouth AsiaSri LankaTrade FacilitationTransportRegional Cooperation
 

March 2017
Bangladesh, Bhutan Commerce Secretaries Discuss Trade Promotion

The Commerce Secretaries of the Government of Bhutan and the Government of Bangladesh met on 23-24 March 2017 in Thimphu, Bhutan, to discuss the promotion of trade and commerce. The Secretaries agreed to negotiate an inland water transit protocol, and initiate a memorandum of understanding for mutual recognition of standards and classifications.


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Tags:  BangladeshBhutanStandards HarmonizationTradeTransport
 

March 2017
SASEC Program Is Now on Facebook

SASEC is now on Facebook, connecting followers to the most up-to-date news on regional cooperation in South Asia, SASEC events, project information, and publications that are all featured daily on www.sasec.asia. To follow SASEC on Facebook, simply click here; then click “Like” at the top of the Facebook page.


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Tags:  SASECBangladeshBhutanIndiaMaldivesMyanmarNepalSri LankaRegional CooperationTradeEconomic cooperation
 

March 2017
Nepal Government Ministries Urged to Collaborate to Manage Widening Export Gap

Low exports and rising imports are causing exponential growth in Nepal's trade deficit, according to Nepal’s Minister of Commerce, and he urged ministries, agencies, and the private sector to collaborate to bridge Nepal's widening export gap. The Ministry of Commerce has prioritized initiatives to promote Nepal's productive capacity.


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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaNepalTrade
 

March 2017
BIMSTEC Roundtable Stresses Need to Resolve Border-Related Trade Barriers

The Eighth BIMSTEC Roundtable Meeting tackled “Rewriting the Rulebook of Regional Connectivity,” emphasizing the need to resolve border-related trade barriers through coordination of government policies across Asia, including Customs procedures and clearance of goods, to unlock the vibrancy of the Asian Highway and reduce the cost of doing business.


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Tags:  BIMSTECTradeCustomsBangladeshIndiaMyanmarICTNepalTransportEase of Doing Business
 

March 2017
International River Port to be Developed in Tripura

India's Ministry of Shipping will set up an international river port in Sonamura, connecting Gomati River in Tripura, in India's northeast, with Meghna river in Bangladesh. India’s Inland Waterways Authority approved the proposal to enable small ferries and boats to transport goods through river transit, according to Minister of State for Industries and Commerce.


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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaTransport
 

March 2017
Three Common Standards for SAARC Finalized

Three common standards—Biscuits Specification, Refined Sugar Specification, and Code of Hygienic Practice for Dairy Industry—for the SAARC region were approved at the South Asian Regional Standards Organization's (SARSO) Fifth Governing Body Meeting. These common standards will help reduce SAARC intra-regional trade costs. According to SARSO Director General, Dr. Syed Humayun Kabir, member countries' national standardization bodies will be in charge of their implementation.


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Tags:  SAARCSARSOBangladeshStandards Harmonization
 

February 2017
Commentary: An Emergent Urgency for Bangladesh

Good connectivity reduces the cost of doing business and increases the competitive strengths of trading partners. In this commentary, Dr. Mustafizur Rahman, Executive Director, Centre for Policy Dialogue, highlights how a sanitary and phytosanitary agreement and an effective Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal Motor Vehicle Agreement would promote South Asian integration and step up Asia-wide cooperation.


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Tags:  BBINMotor Vehicles AgreementBangladeshBhutanIndiaNepalTransportEconomic corridor
 

February 2017
WTO’s Trade Facilitation Agreement Enters into Force

The World Trade Organization (WTO) Trade Facilitation Agreement came into force after Rwanda, Oman, Chad, and Jordan submitted their instruments of acceptance to WTO Director-General Roberto Azevêdo. The submissions bring the total number of ratifications over the 110 required for activation. Members’ trade costs are forecast to lower by 14.3%, with developing countries having the most to gain.


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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaLDCMyanmarNepalSri LankaTrade Facilitation AgreementWTO
 

February 2017
ADB to Back Bangladesh Road Connectivity and Energy Trade

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is ready to assist Bangladesh in its efforts to improve transport and energy connectivity. Mr. Wencai Zhang, Vice President, ADB, affirmed that ADB will continue to support Bangladesh in its goal of becoming a developed country by 2041, as well as in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and minimizing climate change impact.


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Tags:  ADBBangladeshBhutanBBINCooperationDevelopmentMotor Vehicles AgreementEnergyInvestmentNepal
 

February 2017
Commentary: India Infrastructure: Connecting Bihar

The Ganges flows through the middle of Bihar, India, physically dividing it into north and south. Enhanced connectivity can improve lives and livelihoods, especially if the infrastructure is climate-sensitive. Ms. Saleha Waseem, Operations Communications Specialist at the Asian Development Bank’s South Asia Regional Department, shows how improving transport links would make a huge difference to millions of people.


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Tags:  ADBAgricultureBangladeshConnectivityDevelopmentEconomic corridorRegional CooperationIndiaNepalRoadServicesTransport
 

February 2017
Cooperation the Best Option for South Asia’s Growing Power Needs

Hydropower cooperation among Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal could be a viable option for addressing growing power needs in the region, said Mr. Ainun Nishat, Professor Emeritus, Centre for Climate Change and Environmental Research, Brac University, Bangladesh. Nepal’s hydropower potential stands at 83,000 megawatts (MW), while Bhutan’s is at 40,000 MW and northeast India’s at 60,000 MW.


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Tags:  HydropowerEnergyRenewable EnergySustainabilityBangladeshBhutanIndiaNepal
 

February 2017
Commentary: Connecting Asia's Growth Poles

Mr. Wencai Zhang, Asian Development Bank Vice President, discusses in this commentary how Asia’s growth poles will drive the global economy in the coming years, if South Asia, Southeast Asia, and East Asia can dynamically integrate their economies. He emphasized the urgent need to synch strengths across sub-regions—by removing non-tariff barriers, strengthening connectivity, and building economic corridors—to help erase poverty in the region.


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Tags:  ADBMyanmarBangladeshConnectivityEconomic Corridor Development
 

January 2017
Commentary: Need for Re-imagining Regional Cooperation

Limited cooperation and economic integration in South Asia continue to hinder its growth potential, despite being one of the fastest-growing regions in the world. In this commentary, Dr. Shamsul Alam, Member (Senior Secretary), General Economics Division, Planning Commission, Government of Bangladesh, argues for the need to think of pragmatic approaches and re-imagine regional cooperation in South Asia.


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Tags:  ASEANBangladeshBhutanConnectivityIndiaEuropean UnionInfrastructure
 

January 2017
Railway Network Linking India and its Neighbors Under Consideration

A railway network linking India and its neighboring countries, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Myanmar, and Nepal, is being considered by the Government of India, according to India Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu. Developing railway connectivity will increase employment, interaction, trade, and tourism.


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Tags:  IndiaRailBangladeshBhutanMyanmarNepalTradeTrade FacilitationTransportTourismEmployment
 

January 2017
Davos 2017: Accelerating South Asia's Growth and Development through Regional Cooperation

The interactive session “Harnessing Regional Cooperation in South Asia” held at the Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum discussed how regional economic cooperation is helping accelerate growth and development. Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina emphasized continuous initiatives, in economic cooperation in South Asia, including SAFTA and SASEC. India Minister of State for Commerce and Industry Nirmala Sitharaman lauded initiatives to boost connectivity.


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Tags:  South AsiaRegional CooperationTrade FacilitationTransportBangladeshBhutanIndiaNepal
 

January 2017
India to Sign Customs Convention on International Transport of Goods

India is set to join the Transports Internationaux Routiers (TIR), or International Road Transport Convention in its bid to establish seamless trade connectivity with Southeast Asia and Eurasian countries. Through the TIR Convention, India could access Eurasia via the International North-South Transport Corridor. TIR would also give India an advantage in trade with fellow signatories of the Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal (BBIN) Motor Vehicles Agreement.


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Tags:  BangladeshBhutanIndiaNepalConnectivityCustomsEconomic corridorHarmonizationMotor Vehicles AgreementRoadRoadsTrade FacilitationTradeTransportBBIN
 

January 2017
APTA Member Countries Move to Boost Trade in the Region

Bangladesh, China, India, Laos, South Korea, and Sri Lanka, member countries of the Asia-Pacific Trade Agreement (APTA), moved to expand trade and boost growth in the region by agreeing to increase the number of products under preferential tariff treatment to 10,677 items from 4,270 at the 4th session of the APTA Ministerial Council.


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Tags:  Asia-PacificBangladeshDevelopmentRegional CooperationServicesSri LankaSustainabilityTariffsTradeTrade FacilitationUNESCAPIndia
 

January 2017
India Identifies Potential Location for Special Economic Zones in Bangladesh

India is set to undertake a number of projects in the city of Khulna, Bangladesh, including a planned Mongla Special Economic Zone (SEZ) for Indian companies. India is also offering to undertake joint projects with Bangladesh to modernize the Mongla sea port and to construct the Khan Jahan Ali Airport. Trade between India and Bangladesh has seen a substantial increase in the last few years.


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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaEconomic zone
 

January 2017
Bangladesh, Sri Lanka Discuss Bilateral Free Trade Deal

The new Bangladesh High Commissioner to Sri Lanka, Mr. Riaz Hamidullah called on Sri Lanka Finance Minister, Mr. Ravi Karunanayake to discuss a potential Bangladesh-Sri Lanka free trade agreement. The Meeting emphasized benefits to be gained by both countries from this type of agreement.


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Tags:  BangladeshSri LankaTradeFree Trade Agreement
 

December 2016
Commentary: Bangladesh Inching towards Paperless Trade

Bangladesh has adopted the mantra "Digital Bangladesh" in its push to reduce trade costs, by implementing paperless trade through an electronic system. The country has already launched an online trade portal; the Central Bank is successfully conducting electronic transactions; and the National Board of Revenue has also enhanced its paperless capacity. Asjadul Kibria, Bangladeshi economic journalist, provides the following commentary.


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Tags:  BangladeshCustomsSingle WindowTradeTrade FacilitationTrade Facilitation AgreementWTO
 

December 2016
Regional Workshop Highlights Achievements of the SASEC Information Highway Project

A Regional Workshop on the SASEC Research and Training Network was held to assess the results and achievements of the SASEC Information Highway Project. The Meeting reviewed project implementation, discussed knowledge products, and summarized project benefits to rural communities. It also proposed ways to facilitate sustainable ICT cooperation among the four countries.


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Tags:  ICTSASECADBBangladeshBhutanIndiaNepal
 

December 2016
ADB to Fund Bangladesh 129-kilometer Dohazari-Gundum Railway Line

Bangladesh Railway has set out a 20-year plan in a bid to increase the transport body’s market share. The plan includes 235 railway projects at a cost of $30 billion. The country currently has 2,877 kilometers of railroads and has made plans to add another 375 kilometers. ADB will be funding the 129-kilometer Dohazari-Gundum railway line at a cost of $1.5 billion. Such projects are expected to boost economic growth in Bangladesh.


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Tags:  RailTransportBangladeshADB
 

December 2016
4th Regional Customs Enforcement Meeting

The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence under the Central Board of Excise and Customs organized the 4th Regional Customs Enforcement Meeting in New Delhi, India, as part of its Founding Day celebrations. The Heads of Customs Enforcement from Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan, Mauritius and Maldives were invited to participate in the said Meeting, which discussed issues of mutual concern, noted the need to share information and activate channels of coordination.


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Tags:  CustomsTrade FacilitationSouth AsiaRegional CooperationIndiaSri LankaMyanmarBangladeshNepalBhutanMaldivesMyanmarTrade
 

December 2016
SASEC Portfolio Tops $9 billion

The SASEC project portfolio has surpassed the $9 billion mark with the December 2016 approval of Nepal’s SASEC Roads Improvement Project, worth $256.5 million. There are now 44 SASEC investment projects worth a cumulative $9.13 billion. During 2016, seven projects have been approved for a total of $2.37 billion.


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Tags:  SASECTrade FacilitationEnergyTransportRoadsNepalBangladeshBhutanICTRailEconomic corridorConnectivity
 

November 2016
Bangladesh Foreign Minister, Bhutan Ambassador Discuss Joint Development of Hydropower Projects

Bangladesh Foreign Minister A.H. Mahmood Ali highlighted the potential joint development of hydropower projects between Bangladesh and Bhutan during discussions with Bhutan Ambassador to Bangladesh Sonam Tobden Rabgye.


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Tags:  BangladeshBhutanHydropowerEnergyBBIN
 

November 2016
Bangladesh-Nepal Road Route Survey to be Held in December

Government officials of Bangladesh and Nepal will conduct a joint survey on a potential road route under the Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal (BBIN) Motor Vehicle Agreement (MVA), starting from5 December 2016. It will check road conditions, length of travel, and necessary infrastructure to ensure seamless movement of vehicles.


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Tags:  BangladeshNepalBBINTrade FacilitationTransport
 

November 2016
Bangladesh, Sri Lanka to Sign a Free Trade Agreement

Bangladesh and Sri Lanka have agreed to sign a free trade agreement to enhance bilateral trade between the two countries. This decision came out of of the Fifth Joint Economic Cooperation Session between Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, and reflects an eagerness of both countries to improve trade volumes.


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Tags:  BangladeshSri LankaTradeFree Trade AgreementExportsImports
 

November 2016
Bangladesh to Improve Ease of Doing Business to Attract More Indian Investors

In a meeting with the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), Mr. Kazi M. Azul Islam, Chairman, Bangladesh Investment Development Authority, promised CII delegates that Bangladesh will work toward improving the country’s ‘Ease of Doing Business’ to encourage more investors from India. Bangladesh has set a five-year target to improve its ease of doing business.


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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaEase of Doing BusinessInvestmentEnergyInfrastructureBilateral Trade
 

November 2016
Online Alert System for SPS/TBT Notifications Launched

EPing, an online alert system for updates on the latest information on regulatory requirements for international trade, was launched by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, the World Trade Organization, and the International Trade Centre. The system enables access to WTO member notifications on TBT and SPS measures, and facilitates dialogue among the public and private sector in the early stages of potential trade issues.


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Tags:  Trade FacilitationTechnical Barriers to TradeSanitary and PhytosanitaryTradeWTOBangladeshBhutanIndiaMaldivesNepalSri Lanka
 

November 2016
New MoU to Expand Border Haats in Bangladesh and India

The Governments of Bangladesh and India are preparing a new Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to expand their agreement on Bangladesh-India border ‘haats’ (markets). The MOU extends the provision to operate border haats to five years, increases the number of vendors allowed, and sets a $200 purchase limit per person.


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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaTradeBorder Haat
 

October 2016
Power Trade to Help South Asian Countries Save $9 Billion Annually, Reduce Emissions

South Asian countries should engage more in regional energy trade and joint management of resources. By doing so, they could save over $9 billion annually and reduce carbon emissions by 8%. And since energy drives development, energy cooperation and trade is expected to translate to improved standards of living and poverty reduction.


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Tags:  EnergyHydropowerSouth AsiaBangladeshBhutanIndiaMaldivesNepalSri Lanka
 

October 2016
Land Acquisition for the Agartala-Akhaura Rail Project Begins in Bangladesh

The Governments of India and Bangladesh have begun the process of acquiring land in Bangladesh to build the new India-Bangladesh railway project. The 15 kilometer (km) railway will connect Agartala (India) to Akhaura (Bangladesh), and reduce the 1,613-km mountainous distance between Agartala and Kolkata to 514 km.


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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaTransportRail
 

October 2016
Bangladesh and Nepal Prime Ministers Keen on Hastening South Asian Integration

Bangladesh and Nepal officials have emphasized the need to both hasten and deepen integration among South Asian countries through the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC). Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said the region must work to finalize BIMSTEC Free Trade Area Framework Agreement deals to boost trade in the region. Nepal Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal stated that BIMSTEC can be a dynamic engine for growth and development.


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Tags:  BangladeshNepalBIMSTECRegional CooperationFree Trade Agreement
 

October 2016
Bangladesh and Nepal to Undertake Joint Hydropower Investments

The Governments of Bangladesh and Nepal have agreed to undertake joint investments in hydropower plants in Nepal, to generate electricity, including energy exports to Bangladesh. The two countries signed a deal to set up two hydropower plants capable of generating 1,500 megawatts.


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Tags:  BangladeshEnergyNepal
 

October 2016
Commentary: The Case for Stronger Ties in South Asia

In recent years, countries in South Asia have shown increasing commitment to deepening regional cooperation through bilateral agreements and regional initiatives, including the Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal Motor Vehicles Agreement. This commentary by Ms. Nahela Nowshin of the Centre for Policy Dialogue discusses the importance of regional initiatives in South Asia, as well as the need to promote dialogue on matters of regional cooperation and connectivity.


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Tags:  Trade FacilitationTransportBangladeshBhutanIndiaNepal
 

October 2016
Simplified Customs Process to Benefit Emerging Domestic Brands

A new Customs inspection and verification procedure is changing how trade is conducted among South Asian countries. Through the BBIN Motor Vehicles Agreement, cargo and passenger vehicles may now pass through the four countries more smoothly. The simplified process greatly benefits apparel-centric economies, making South Asia more competitive for both global and domestic brands.


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Tags:  BBINCustomsTrade FacilitationGarmentsImportsMotor Vehicles AgreementBangladeshIndiaNepal
 

October 2016
ADB Advances Harmonization of SPS/TBT Measures in the SASEC Subregion

The Asian Development Bank is helping countries in the SASEC subregion harmonize two technical non-tariff measures, Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) Measures and Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT), to enhance intraregional trade. Under this initiative, a national diagnostic study on SPS and TBT will be conducted in the six SASEC member countries, to be led by core committees formed by the six governments, in consultation with trade experts.


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Tags:  Trade FacilitationNon-tariff MeasuresBangladeshBhutanNepal
 

September 2016
SASEC Countries Gear Up for Greater Economic Cooperation

The six member countries of the South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation Program have launched the SASEC Operational Plan for 2016-2025. The plan expands the program’s focus beyond intraregional cooperation to deepening linkages with Southeast and East Asia, and widens the scope of transport, trade facilitation, and energy cooperation to include economic corridor development as a priority initiative. The plan also lists more than 200 potential regional projects for South Asia.


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Tags:  ADBSASECEconomic corridorBangladeshBhutanIndiaMaldivesNepalSri Lanka
 

September 2016
ADB Approves $1.5 Billion Railway Project for Bangladesh

The Asian Development Bank has approved a multitranche loan of $1.5 billion to the Government of Bangladesh for construction of a key section of the Chittagong-Cox’s Bazar railway line—the largest ever investment in railways by ADB. The new line will improve Bangladesh’s access to Myanmar and beyond, facilitate trade, and boost tourism in southeastern Bangladesh.
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Tags:  BangladeshMyanmarRailConnectivityTransportTradeTourism
 

September 2016
13th SAARC Trade Fair Held in Thimphu

The 13th SAARC trade fair was held in Thimphu, Bhutan, to promote intra-regional trade and investment among SAARC countries. In his opening address, Mr. Lekey Dorji, Bhutan Economic Affairs Minister, underscored the importance of fostering business links among companies in the region to accelerate economic growth and improve people's well-being.


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Tags:  SAARCTradeSouth AsiaBhutanBangladeshIndiaNepalMaldivesSri Lanka
 

September 2016
Bangladesh Forming a Hydropower Generation Company

The Government of Bangladesh plans to form a hydropower generation company to import hydropower from countries including Bhutan and Nepal. The initiative will be set up under Bangladesh's Power Division, Ministry of Power, Energy, and Mineral Resources.


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Tags:  BangladeshHydropowerBhutan
 

September 2016
Agricultural Value Chains can be Game Changer for India-Bangladesh Trade

A seminar organized by CUTS International has recommended promotion of regional value chains in agriculture between India and Bangladesh. A recent CUTS International study revealed huge opportunities for trade in agricultural produce: for example, in Tripura, India, produce sourced from Indian states can be easily imported from nearby areas of Bangladesh at a much faster time and for less cost.


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Tags:  IndiaBangladeshTrade
 

September 2016
Customs-free BBIN Borders to Cut Time, Cost for Traders

Customs-free borders for Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal will save time and money for importers and exporters and thereby increase the ease of doing business, according to an executive of the Federation of Indian Exporters Organisation (FIEO). Because goods no longer have to be unloaded at the border, trucks can easily cross borders, reducing time and logistics costs for both buyer and seller.


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Tags:  BBINCustomsTradeMotor Vehicles AgreementBangladeshBhutanIndia
 

September 2016
National Single Window to Simplify Bangladesh Cross-border Trade

The Government of Bangladesh will establish a National Single Window to simplify cross-border trade procedures and improve Bangladesh's ease of doing business. The System will facilitate import, export, and transit transactions using an electronic portal that links all relevant agencies for cross-border trade.


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Tags:  BangladeshTradeTrade Facilitation
 

September 2016
Second BBIN Trial Run Demonstrates Benefits of BBIN MVA

A new chapter in trade relations and people-to-people contact between Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal (BBIN) began on 5 September 2016, as a Bangladeshi cargo truck rolled into the Customs Inland Container Depot, Patparganj, Delhi. Though the vehicle entered India through Petrapole Land Customs Station, Customs clearance was done at the ICD, Patparganj, as part of a trial run of the BBIN Motor Vehicles Agreement.


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Tags:  BBINTrade FacilitationTransportMotor Vehicles AgreementBangladeshBhutanIndiaNepal
 

September 2016
Bangladesh to Sign FTA, Coastal Shipping Deal with Sri Lanka

Bangladesh is set to sign a free trade agreement and a coastal shipping deal with Sri Lanka to boost trade and investments between the two countries. A Joint Study Group will be formed to accelerate development of the coastal shipping agreement, for which standard operating procedures are being drafted.
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Tags:  BangladeshSri LankaTradeFree Trade Agreement
 

September 2016
SAARC Ministers Push for Economic Union

Finance Ministers from the eight South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) member states are pushing for the formation of a South Asian Economic Union (SAEU) to ensure larger inflow of investments, higher trade volumes, and energy generation. The ministers highlighted the need to fast-track the formation of the SAEU to help boost the inflow of investments and trade volumes.


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Tags:  SAEUSAARCTradeEnergyTrade FacilitationBangladeshIndiaBhutanMaldivesNepal
 

August 2016
SAARC Finance Ministers Meeting Focuses on Trade, Taxation

The South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Finance Ministers’ Meeting focused on improving trade relations among member nations. Discussions revolved around economic issues, Customs unions, avoidance of double taxation, improving connectivity, increasing trade volume, and developing supply chain linkages.


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Tags:  SAARCIndiaTradeBangladeshBhutanMaldivesNepalSri LankaConnectivityCustomsSASECTrade
 

August 2016
Southern Gujarat Chamber of Commerce and Industry Signs MoUs with Bangladesh Private Sector

The Southern Gujarat Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SGCCI) undertook a 6-day visit to Bangladesh, and met with the Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) and the Chittagong Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI), to look into economic opportunities India and Bangladesh could tap. SGCCI signed memorandums of understanding (MoUs) with DCCI and CCCI, to explore new areas of cooperation and boost bilateral trade relations.


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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaPrivate SectorTrade
 

August 2016
BBIN MVA to Boost Infrastructure Development in the Subregion

The Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal (BBIN) Motor Vehicles Agreement (MVA) is set to boost infrastructure development in the BBIN subregion. Bangladesh will see significant increase in cargo movement, enabling India to access its Northeast region, and helping facilitate third-country trade of landlocked Bhutan and Nepal. However, major investments in infrastructure are needed to maximize Bangladesh’s potential to become a transport and transshipment hub.


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Tags:  BangladeshBhutanIndiaNepalTrade Facilitation
 

August 2016
Commentary: Trade Portal and Single Window Reduce Cost of Doing Business

The National Trade Portal and National Single Window are important components of the World Trade Organization's Trade Facilitation Agreement (WTO TFA). This commentary by Ms. Ferdous Ara Begum, Chief Executive Officer, Business Initiative Leading Development of Bangladesh, discusses how these could improve trade, gives an update on Bangladesh's initiatives toward ratifying the WTO TFA, and recommends a region-wide Single Window for South Asia.


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Tags:  WTOTrade Facilitation AgreementASEANBangladeshSri LankaTrade Facilitation
 

August 2016
Bangladesh to Develop Rail Corridors to Facilitate BBIN Trade

Bangladesh is pushing for the development of railway corridors with India to facilitate trade and investment among BBIN (Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal) countries. To help boost regional trade, Bangladesh Railway is looking to revive five routes to India, and build railway links to connect with Bhutan and Nepal.


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Tags:  TransportRailBangladeshIndiaBBIN
 

August 2016
Nepal Energy Ministry Advances Preparation for Nepal-Bangladesh Energy Cooperation

Preparations to sign a power trade agreement between the Governments of Nepal and Bangladesh are underway, with the Energy Ministry of Nepal finalizing a draft memorandum of understanding on Nepal-Bangladesh energy cooperation. The draft outlines protocols for conducting energy trade between the two countries, in line with the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation Framework Agreement for Energy Cooperation.


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Tags:  BangladeshNepalEnergySAARC
 

August 2016
Banglabandha Land Port Improvement to Support Rising Bangladesh-Nepal Trade

The Ministry of Shipping, Government of Bangladesh, has ordered upgrading of the Banglabandha Land Port to cater to rising trade with Nepal. This includes improving and building new loading and unloading sheds, and other needed infrastructure, such as warehouses, vehicle parking, and the road leading to the port.


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Tags:  ShippingBangladeshNepalTransportBBIN
 

August 2016
Bhomra, Sheola, Thegamukh Ports under BBIN to Benefit Region

Development of infrastructure at Sheola, Thegamukh, and Bhomra land ports under the Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal (BBIN) initiative for regional connectivity will increase economic activity, according to a feasibility study report jointly undertaken by India and the People’s Republic of China. The report was presented at a National Public Consultation Workshop in Bangladesh on 11 August 2016.


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Tags:  PortsBangladeshIndiaTrade FacilitationTransport
 

August 2016
Commentary: Is Regional Product Standard at All Feasible?

Absence of a harmonized system of standards among South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) members is one reason for the increase of technical barriers to trade, giving rise to non-tariff barriers that hamper SAARC intra-regional trade. A commentary by Mr. Wasi Ahmed, a former senior trade diplomat, discusses the growing recognition of importance of harmonized regional standards within SAARC.


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Tags:  SAARCTradeRegional CooperationStandards HarmonizationBangladeshIndia
 

August 2016
Editorial: Basin-wide River Management for South Asia’s Prosperity

River management provides opportunities to release regenerative capacities of the people and environment of basin-wide areas. The following article suggests South Asian countries cooperate to fulfill a promise of greater sustainability. Cooperation in water resource management can serve as a catalyst for broader regional cooperation, economic integration, and development.


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Tags:  BBINRiversBangladeshBhutanIndiaMaldivesSri LankaTransport
 

August 2016
Bangladesh Seeks to Deepen Ties with ASEAN

Bangladesh is seeking to become a dialogue partner of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), to deepen Bangladesh-ASEAN economic, political, and cultural connectivity. Formalization of ties will promote trade flow, investment, and cultural exchanges between South and Southeast Asia, emphasized Bangladesh Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali.


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Tags:  BangladeshSoutheast AsiaASEANTrade
 

August 2016
Connectivity with Bangladesh Integral to India’s Act East Policy

India is upbeat on India-Bangladesh bilateral relations, particularly on connectivity and bilateral trade. Mr. Harsh Vardhan Shringla, High Commissioner of lndia to Bangladesh, emphasized at a Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry meeting, that Bangladesh is integral to India’s Act East Policy and noted the many efforts to link the two countries.


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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaRailBilateral TradeTransport
 

July 2016
India, Bangladesh Railway Ministers Lay Foundation Stone for the Agartala-Akhaura Railway Link

Indian Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu and Bangladeshi Railway Minister Mazibul Hoque jointly laid the foundation stone for the 15 kilometer (km) Agartala (India)-Akhaura (Bangladesh) railway project. This rail link reduces the Agartala-Kolkata distance from 1,613 km to 514 km.


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Tags:  RailIndiaBangladeshTransport
 

July 2016
SASEC Investment Projects Top $7.7 Billion

South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation (SASEC) investment projects increased to a cumulative $7.66 billion in the areas of transport, energy, trade facilitation, and ICT with the recent approval of India’s Bihar New Ganga Bridge Project. To date, 40 SASEC-supported projects are helping member countries strengthen regional connectivity infrastructure, promote economic growth, and foster regional cooperation. In addition, there are now 71 technical assistance projects worth $66.14 mi
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Tags:  SASECEnergyTrade FacilitationTransportSouth AsiaADBICTBangladeshBhutanIndiaMaldivesNepalSri LankaEconomic Corridor Development

 

July 2016
Bangladesh Road Transport and Bridges Minister: BBIN MVA May Start in December

Implementation of the Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and Nepal (BBIN) Motor Vehicle Agreement (MVA) may start in December, according to Bangladesh Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader, while speaking at a closing ceremony of a drivers' training on road safety.


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Tags:  BBINTrade FacilitationTransportBangladeshBhutanIndiaNepal
 

July 2016
ADB Blog: Why Economic Corridor Development is the Way Forward for South Asia

The economic corridor development (ECD) strategy is an approach that integrates and synergizes industry, infrastructure, and urbanization through meticulous planning over a long-term horizon. An Asian Development Bank (ADB) blog post by Mr. Hoe Yun Jeong, Senior Economist (Regional Cooperation), South Asia Regional Department, published on 26 July 2016, shares how an ECD approach can be beneficial for the South Asia region.


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Tags:  Economic corridorIndiaVizag-Chennai Industrial CorridorSouth AsiaEast Coast Economic CorridorEconomic Corridor DevelopmentBangladeshSri Lanka
 

July 2016
Manipur Updating Imphal Ring Road Proposal

Manipur State Public Works Department officials are set to revise their proposal for the construction of a Ring Road in Greater Imphal, which is expected to ease increasing traffic congestion. The proposed Imphal Ring Road would be 39 kilometer long and cost approximately $84 million.


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Tags:  IndiaTransportBangladeshRoadSASEC
 

July 2016
Three Member Countries Designate Areas for SAARC Industrial Parks

Bangladesh, India, and Pakistan, member countries of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC), have stepped up their support for the proposed SAARC Industrial Parks by allocating lands for the planned initiative. Designated areas include Chittagong, Bangladesh; Gujarat, India; and Faisalabad City, Pakistan.


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Tags:  SAARCTradePrivate SectorBangladeshIndia
 

July 2016
Prime Ministers of Bangladesh and India Jointly Dedicate Largest South Asia Land Customs Station

India Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina jointly inaugurated the Petrapole Integrated Checkpost (ICP). Prime Minister Modi lauded the event as an important milestone in India-Bangladesh relations, providing a boost to bilateral connectivity and trade, while Bangladesh Prime Minister Hasina expressed hope that the ICP will further enhance good relations between the two countries


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Tags:  IndiaBangladeshCustomsTradeTrade Facilitation
 

July 2016
Commentary: 800 Million Reasons

Mr. Hun Kim, Director General, South Asia Department, ADB, describes how partnership of 6 South Asian countries through the ADB-supported South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation (SASEC) Program is helping propel economic growth in South Asia, amidst an uncertain regional and global economic climate, by working to increase trade volumes to reduce the number of impoverished people in the region.


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Tags:  Regional CooperationSouth AsiaEnergyTrade FacilitationTransportBangladeshBhutanIndiaMaldivesNepalSri Lanka
 

July 2016
Blog: Is South Asia ready for a Regional Motor Vehicles Agreement?

Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and Nepal (BBIN) signed a landmark Motor Vehicles Agreement (MVA) meant to allow smooth passage of goods and passenger vehicles in each other’s territories. In this blog post, Sanjay Kathuria, Lead Economist and Coordinator, South Asia Regional Integration, Trade and Competitiveness Global Practice, World Bank, asks if South Asia is truly ready for such a regional agreement.


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Tags:  South AsiaTransportTrade FacilitationBangladeshBhutanIndiaMaldivesNepalSri Lanka
 

July 2016
Bangladesh, India to Expand Regional Energy Trade

The Governments of Bangladesh and India are working on plans to expand the regional energy market by doubling the capacities of cross-border power transmission interconnections, and setting up a third cross-border energy grid.


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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaEnergy
 

July 2016
Business Leaders Call for Industrial Zone in Panchagarh, Bangladesh

Business leaders at the recent Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal (BBIN) Business Forum and Expo said they want to see an industrial zone in Panchagarh, Bangladesh, as this would be close to Biratnagar in Nepal, Phuntsholing in Bhutan, and Siliguri in India.


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Tags:  BangladeshTradeTransport
 

July 2016
Bangladesh and India In Talks to Open Up Coastal Shipping Routes to Passenger Vessels

Plans are underway to open up coastal shipping routes between Bangladesh and India to passenger and cruise vessels. According to Bangladesh Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Md Shahriar Alam, the two countries are in talks to sign a memorandum of understanding allowing Indian vessels through Bangladesh's waterways, to ease travel to India's northeast.


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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaTransportShipping
 

July 2016
Harmonize Customs Duties for BBIN Success

BBIN Business Forum states that Customs duties and taxation must be harmonized in order to improve trade among Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal. Following the successful signing of the Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal Motor Vehicles Agreement (BBIN MVA), the countries must now pursue ways to make the movement of goods and people easier.


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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaTrade FacilitationTransportCooperation
 

June 2016
ADB-Bangladesh PPP Road Project to Boost Dhaka's Intercity Connectivity

The Rampura-Amulia-Demra public-private partnership (PPP) road project in Bangadesh will be developed into a four-lane 13.5-kilometer access road under a transaction advisory services agreement between the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Bangladesh Public–Private Partnership Authority. The project complements ADB’s existing support to the Bangladesh Roads and Highways Department for intercity road connectivity under the SASEC Program.


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Tags:  BangladeshTransportADB
 

June 2016
Interactive SASEC Corridor Map on Website

The interactive SASEC Corridor Map on the SASEC Program website and SASEC Mobile App is your gateway to SASEC projects. View projects by sector—energy, transport, trade facilitation, and ICT—or by corridor using the interactive map, to learn how the SASEC program is helping promote regional prosperity in South Asia. The map also includes project information and links to SASEC project pages.


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Tags:  SASECEconomic corridorEnergyTrade FacilitationTransportBangladeshBhutanIndiaMaldives
 

June 2016
ADB Blog: Why We Should Be Happy When SASEC Customs Officials Talk More

Meetings between Customs officials from SASEC member countries reaps benefits for the SASEC subregion and beyond, providing a platform for officers to decide the next steps in improving cross-border coordination and cooperation to resolve bottlenecks for trade at the borders. An Asian Development Bank (ADB) blog post by Ms. Rose McKenzie, Senior Regional Cooperation Specialist, Regional Cooperation and Operations Coordination, South Asia Regional Department, ADB, is shared.


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Tags:  CustomsTrade FacilitationRegional CooperationICTBBINBangladeshBhutanIndiaMaldivesNepal
 

June 2016
ADB Earmarks $4.1 Billion for Bangladesh, Including $300 Million for SASEC Road Connectivity

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has earmarked $4.10 billion for Bangladesh for the 2016-2019 period, subject to project readiness. This includes $50 million for the proposed SASEC Road Connectivity Project-II and $200 million for the Chittagong-Cox's Bazar railway project. The ADB is also allotting $300 million for power generation and $194 million for rural infrastructure maintenance.


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Tags:  ADBBangladeshRoadTransport
 

June 2016
Bangladesh-India Transshipment Facility Reduces Distance to India's Northeast

Launch of the Bangladesh-India transshipment facility concluded with the successful delivery of steel rods from Kolkata, India to Agartala, the capital of Tripura, through Akhaura land port in Bangladesh, onboard Bangladeshi trucks. The facility will allow India to deliver goods to the northeast region in an estimated 10-day time, and help boost trade in the region by enabling Bangladesh to transport goods to Nepal and Bhutan via India, and give India access to Myanmar via Bangladesh.


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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaTrade FacilitationTransport
 

June 2016
Bangladesh Set to Upgrade 1,752 Kilometers of Roads

Bangladesh has adopted a multi-dimensional plan to upgrade 1,752 kilometers of highways to four lanes. The Government of Bangladesh is already implementing the 69-kilometer Joydebpur-Chandra-Tangail-Elenga four-lane project under the SASEC Road Connectivity Project.


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Tags:  BangladeshRoadTransport
 

June 2016
Bangladesh Prime Minister: Good Ties with Neighbors, Connectivity to Boost Trade

Good relations, regional connectivity, and cooperation among Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal (BBIN) countries boost trade and business in South Asia, said Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on 18 June 2016.


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Tags:  CooperationBangladeshTradeBBIN
 

June 2016
ADB Blog: High Hopes for BBIN Vehicle Agreement, One Year On

The Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal (BBIN) Motor Vehicles Agreement is a landmark framework agreement signed by the transport ministers of the BBIN countries last June 2015 in Thimphu, Bhutan. Mr. Ronald Butiong, Director, Regional Cooperation and Operations Coordination, South Asia Regional Department, Asian Development Bank (ADB), describes how it is paving the way for a more integrated and more prosperous South Asian region in an ADB blog entry.


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Tags:  BBINTrade FacilitationTransportBangladeshBhutanIndiaNepal
 

June 2016
Bangladesh Seeks to Upgrade Jessore-Benapole Highway

The Government of Bangladesh has completed its feasibility study and detailed design for a planned 38-km Jessore-Benapole highway upgrade. It is set to inject more than $42 million to fund the Indo-Bangladesh transport corridor improvement to facilitate trade and connectivity. The Jessore-Benapole highway is central to several regional connectivity initiatives, including the Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal Motor Vehicle Agreement and SAARC highway corridors.


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Tags:  BangladeshRoadTransport
 

June 2016
SAARC CCI and SAARC Development Fund to Co-finance Projects

The South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Development Fund (SDF) and SAARC Chamber of Commerce and Industry have pledged to collaborate and co-finance projects under the SDF's social, economic and infrastructure windows to promote regional connectivity across the SAARC region.
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Tags:  SAARC CCISAARCRegional CooperationBangladeshBhutanIndiaMaldivesNepalSri LankaTradeTransport
 

June 2016
Indian Entrepreneurs Invest in Bangladesh, Create 63,277 Jobs

Indian entrepreneurs have invested INR 3,084.43 crore ($458.14 million) in Bangladesh, a move that has created 63,277 jobs, says Mr. Amir Hossain Amu, Ministry of Industries, Bangladesh. He also said Bangladesh is looking forward to being India’s partner in tech industries.


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Tags:  SAFTAIndiaBangladeshTrade
 

June 2016
India to Roll Out Agartala-Akhaura Broad Gauge Railway Service

The 15-kilometer broad gauge rail service from Agartala, India to Akhaura, Bangladesh is set to be inaugurated in June 2016. Funded by the Government of India, the railway project will reduce the 1,650-km distance between Agartala and Kolkata to 550 km and is foreseen to boost bilateral trade and business between the two neighboring countries.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaRailBilateral TradeTransport
 

May 2016
Bangladesh Cabinet Endorses the Draft Bangladesh Standards and Testing Institution Law 2016

A meeting of the Bangladesh Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has approved in principle the draft Bangladesh Standards and Testing Institution Law 2016. The updated law includes an adjusted definition of "standards" from "foreign standards" to "international standards."
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Tags:  BangladeshStandards HarmonizationTechnical Barriers to Trade
 

May 2016
Bangladesh and Sri Lanka Agree to Enhance Trade Relations

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and Sri Lanka President Maithripala Sirisena agreed to further enhance bilateral trade relations at a meeting held on the sidelines of the G7 Outreach Summit in Japan. President Sirisena also accepted an invitation extended by Prime Minister Hasina to visit Bangladesh in December this year.
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Tags:  BangladeshSri LankaTrade
 

May 2016
Bureau to Foster Bangladesh Renewable Energy Sector

Bangladesh is reviewing targets for its renewable energy program to reduce the country’s greenhouse gas emissions. Mr. Nasrul Hamid, State Minister for Power, Energy, and Mineral Resources of Bangladesh said the Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority aims to increase share of energy coming from renewable resources.


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Tags:  BangladeshEnergyRenewable Energy
 

May 2016
Proposed SASEC Road Project to Improve Bangladesh Transport Network

A proposed SASEC road upgrade project in Bangladesh will improve the country’s transport system and enhance trade and investment in the region, according to Mr. Obaidul Quader of the Ministry of Road Transport and Bridges


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Tags:  SASECTransportBangladesh
 

May 2016
Bangladesh Trade Organization Looks into Growing Bhutan Trade Volume

The Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industries (FBCCI) explored the possibility of growing its trade volume from Bhutan through investments in the country's fruit and vegetable processing industries and buying spices from Bhutan. FBCCI President Abdul Matlub Ahmad was in the country to explore new areas of trade and investments between the two countries.
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Tags:  BangladeshBhutanTradePrivate Sector
 

May 2016
King of Bhutan Emphasizes Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal Cooperation

Bangladesh Foreign Minister Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali paid a courtesy call on the King of Bhutan Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck. The King lauded Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's initiatives to boost Bangladesh-Bhutan bilateral relations, and emphasized the Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal (BBIN) cooperation as a platform to achieve regional prosperity.
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Tags:  BhutanBangladeshBBINIndiaNepalTransportRegional Cooperation
 

May 2016
Foreign Ministers of Bangladesh and Bhutan Discuss Energy Cooperation

Bangladesh Foreign Minister Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali and Bhutan Foreign Minister Damcho Dorji discussed hydropower in a meeting in Thimphu, Bhutan: Bangladesh plans to invest in the 1,125 megawatt Dorjilung hydropower project. Trilateral cooperation among Bangladesh, Bhutan, and India would enable Bangladesh's investment in Bhutan's hydropower sector.
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Tags:  BangladeshBhutanEnergyHydropower
 

May 2016
Bangladesh-Nepal Commerce Secretary-level Meeting Move to Increase Bilateral Trade

A bilateral meeting led by Bangladesh Senior Commerce Secretary Hedayetullah Al Mamoon and Nepal Commerce Secretary Naindra Prasad Upadhyay initiated a number of measures to expand trade volume between the two countries, including removal of technical barriers to trade, harmonization of sanitary and phytosanitary measures, and preferential market access for 158 products.
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Tags:  BangladeshNepalTradeStandards HarmonizationTechnical Barriers to Trade
 

May 2016
Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal Economic Zone May be Formed

A Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal (BBIN) economic zone may be declared in an upcoming BBIN seminar and business expo to be held in Siliguri, India, according to Mr. Abdul Matlub Ahmad, President, Federation of Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI). Mr. Ahmad was in Thimphu, Bhutan to discuss the upcoming BBIN seminar, as well as opportunities for trade and investment between Bangladesh and Bhutan.
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Tags:  Economic zoneBBINTradeBangladeshBhutanIndiaNepal
 

April 2016
WCO Workshop Considers Improvement of Regional Transit Regimes in BBIN Subregion

A World Customs Organization (WCO) Subregional Workshop on Transit Corridors in South Asia considered improvement of regional transit regimes in the region. Progress of the Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and Nepal (BBIN) Motor Vehicle Agreement, as well as national experiences of Japan, Switzerland and Malawi in implementing efficient transit regimes, was discussed.
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Tags:  Trade FacilitationTransportBBINBangladeshBhutanIndiaNepal
 

April 2016
Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal Railway Agreement Proposed to Boost Multimodal Connectivity

A railway agreement in the Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal (BBIN) subregion is being proposed, in line with expansion of railway links boosting connectivity between India's Northeast and its BBIN neighbors. According to Mr. Mukul Kumar, Director (Transport), Railway Board, Ministry of Railways, Government of India, this initiative will facilitate cross-border transport of goods and people, and enable efficient multimodal transport system to integrate and sustain the region's economic growth.
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Tags:  BBINRailTransportBangladeshBhutanIndiaNepal
 

April 2016
Economic Cooperation Dialogue Highlights Need for Transport Corridors

The Economic Cooperation Dialogue on Regional Connectivity and Border Special Development Zones in Eastern South Asia highlighted the importance of transport corridors to promote trade and economic cooperation in the region. Dr. Nagesh Kumar, Head, UNESCAP Subregional Office for South and South-West Asia, shared how developing transport corridors can turn constraints faced by the region's landlocked countries into opportunities.
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Tags:  TradeTransportSouth AsiaMyanmarBangladeshBhutanIndiaNepal
 

April 2016
Intergovernmental Agreement on Dry Ports Opens New Development Prospects to Landlocked Countries

The Intergovernmental Agreement on Dry Ports, developed with support of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific, entered into force on 23 April 2016, after 8 of the 17 signatory countries, including Bangladesh and India, deposited approvals of Agreement. The Agreement aims to promote international recognition of dry ports, facilitating investment in dry port infrastructure and enhancing their operational efficiency.
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Tags:  PortsTrade FacilitationTradeLLDCBangladeshIndia
 

April 2016
Power Market Workshop in Bangladesh Explores Further Energy Imports from India

Bangladesh plans to import 2,000 megawatts of electricity from India in the coming years, according to Bangladesh State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid in his address at the 'Power Market Development in India: Key Lessons Learnt' workshop. He highlighted the country's ongoing regional power trade with India and plans for its expansion, and urged the Government of India to step forward in the planned hydropower project with Bhutan.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaEnergy
 

April 2016
Bangladesh's ECNEC Approves Budget to Upgrade Trans-Asia Railway Link

The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) of Bangladesh approved an updated budget of around $2.3 billion for the 129.6 kilometer Dohazari-Ramu-Cox's Bazar dual gauge railway project. The proposed railway track will be linked to the Trans-Asian Railway, connecting Bangladesh to India and Myanmar.
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Tags:  BangladeshRailTransport
 

April 2016
Bangladesh Prime Minister, Visiting Indian Minister of State Discuss Cooperation

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina called on neighboring countries to cooperate in the Bangladesh Government's efforts to become a developed nation. In a meeting with India's Minister of State on Independent Charge for Petroleum and Natural Gas, Mr. Dharmendra Pradhan, Prime Minister Hasina emphasized Bangladesh's focus on promoting connectivity.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaRegional CooperationSpecial Economic ZoneBBIN
 

April 2016
Bangladesh Commerce Minister Urges India's North East to Increase Imports

Bangladesh Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed and Manipur Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh discussed increasing volumes of imports from Bangladesh to the Indian state of Manipur during a visit by the Bangladesh Commerce Minister. Chief Minister Singh affirmed the huge demand for Bangladeshi products, and recommended enhanced private sector cooperation between the two countries.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaTrade
 

April 2016
Commentary: Political Economy of Regional Integration: Where Do We Stand in South Asia?

Dr. Selim Reihan notes that drivers of political economy can impact the region's integration agenda. In this essay, Dr. Raihan highlights the importance of exploring the political economy of regional integration to generate a better assessment of the factors driving and constraining regional integration, and create broader awareness among stakeholders to stimulate a more realistic and effective regional policy design and processes.


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Tags:  Economic corridorBhutanIndiaBangladeshNepalMaldivesSri LankaSAARCSAFTAServicesSouth AsiaInfrastructureTrade FacilitationTransport
 

April 2016
Promoting Trade in the BBIN Subregion Dialogue Discusses Need to Reduce NTMs

A Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) dialogue on promoting trade in the Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal (BBIN) subregion has discussed intraregional trade in South Asia, which remains under 5% despite implementation of the South Asia Free Trade Agreement. According to MCCI, non-tariff measures manifested as non-tariff barriers and para-tariff barriers lead to high transaction costs in cross-border trade, keeping trade volume low.
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Tags:  TradeBBINSAFTABangladeshBhutanIndiaNepal
 

April 2016
Private Sector Representative: BBIN Corridor Trial Run Highlighted Scope for Development

Dr. Pritam Banerjee, Senior Director, Corporate Public Policy (South Asia), Deutsche Post DHL, reported that the first trial run of cargo vehicles on the Kolkata-Dhaka-Agartala route under the Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal (BBIN) sub-regional framework, enabled a better understanding of future needs and solutions for safe and efficient movement of cargo across BBIN borders.
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Tags:  Private SectorBBINTrade FacilitationTransportIndiaBangladesh
 

April 2016
Bangladesh Prepares to Ratify the WTO TFA

The Government of Bangladesh is preparing to ratify the World Trade Organization (WTO) Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA), which will enable efficient and speedy flow of goods across borders and make doing business less costly. Bangladesh aims to ratify the TFA soon, to allow the country to enjoy trade benefits available to least developed countries.
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Tags:  BangladeshTrade FacilitationLDC
 

March 2016
ICT and Energy Cooperation Take Bangladesh-India Relations to New Heights

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and India Prime Minister Narendra Modi participated in the inauguration of an additional 100 megawatt electricity supply from India's Tripura state to Bangladesh's Comilla state, and the leasing of 10 GBPS of internet bandwidth from Bangladesh to India's Agartala state on 23 March 2016. Both Prime Ministers lauded Bangladesh-India cooperation.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaICTEnergyBBIN
 

March 2016
Bilateral Ties, BBIN MVA Reviewed in Meeting between Bangladesh President and Bhutan Ambassador

Bangladesh President Abdul Hamid, in a meeting with outgoing Bhutan Ambassador to Bangladesh Pema Choden, highlighted how implementation of the Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal (BBIN) Motor Vehicle Agreement (MVA) will expand the scope of trade and investment in the subregion. They also discussed how bilateral relations between Bangladesh and Bhutan could be enhanced.
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Tags:  BangladeshBhutanBBINTransportMotor Vehicles Agreement
 

March 2016
Direct Bangladesh-India Cargo Shipments to Enhance Bilateral Trade

Direct cargo shipments between Bangladesh-India were launched on 15 March 2016, with the first vessel sailing from Chittagong Port, Bangladesh to Krishnapatnam Port, India on 17 March 2016, carrying cotton and textiles. The service reduces transport time significantly—from 25 to 4 days to carry goods from Bangladesh to India, with goods no longer having to pass through Colombo, Sri Lanka, or Singapore.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaTradePortsTrade Facilitation
 

March 2016
Bangladesh Prime Minister, Bhutan Queen Mother Discuss Growing Bilateral Ties

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina expressed satisfaction over the growing engagement between Bangladesh and Bhutan. The Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal initiative, according to the Prime Minister, further widens the scope of cooperation between the two countries. The Queen of Bhutan likewise expressed the hope that bilateral relations between the two countries will continue to strengthen.
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Tags:  BangladeshBhutanBBINRegional Cooperation
 

March 2016
Bangladesh Seeks to Widen Scope of Cross-Border Energy Transmission

Mr. Nasrul Hamid, Bangladesh State Minister for Power and Energy, discussed the possibility of enhancing the scope of Bangladesh-India cross-border energy transmission to include Bhutan in a meeting with Indian High Commissioner in Dhaka Harsh Vardhan Shringla. Bangladesh is mulling a $1 billion investment in Bhutan's hydropower industry, and is reviewing a draft MoU for possible electricity imports from Bhutan.
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Tags:  EnergyHydropowerBangladesh
 

March 2016
Bangladesh Trade Portal Enhances Predictability and Transparency in the Country's Trade

The Government of Bangladesh has launched the Bangladesh Trade Portal, a one-stop shop for information on conducting trade with Bangladesh. The website offers useful information on exporting goods from, and importing commercial goods into Bangladesh, to promote the country's trade sector. Bangladesh Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed said the portal marks a milestone for business and traders.
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Tags:  BangladeshTradeTrade FacilitationICT
 

March 2016
Potential SASEC Project to Modernize Bangladesh's Regional Trade Links

Major upgrades to modernize the Tangail-Rangpur Highway—which is part of the 1,741 kilometers (km) linking Bangladesh with the Asian Highway, and the Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal road network—are being proposed by Bangladesh Road and Highways Department, to include road widening and construction of bridges, flyovers, and culverts. The plan is currently being reviewed by Bangladesh Planning Ministry.
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Tags:  BangladeshTransportEconomic corridor
 

March 2016
Bangladesh Minister for Information Discusses Energy Cooperation between Bangladesh and Nepal

The need to ramp up cooperation in energy between Bangladesh and Nepal was discussed by Bangladesh Minister for Information Hasanul Haq Inu at an interaction organized by the Nepal Reporters’ Club. According to the Minister, Bangladesh has already forwarded a proposal for transmission of energy from Nepal.
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Tags:  BangladeshEnergyNepal
 

February 2016
Tongi-Bhairab Double Rail Track Inaugurated

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina formally opened Bangladesh Railway’s 64-kilometer Tongi-Bhairab double-rail track on the Dhaka-Chittagong route, which is expected to speed up rail travel between Dhaka and Chittagong by at least an hour and a half. The Asian Development Bank funded the $162.5 million project through the SASEC program.
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Tags:  BangladeshRailTransport
 

February 2016
Banglabandha-Phulbari Land Port Opens Immigration Facility

An immigration facility in the Banglabandha-Phulbari Land Port between Bangladesh and India—jointly inaugurated on 18 February 2016—is expected to ease people-to-people connectivity between the two countries. Strategically located on the Asian Highway, this border-crossing point is expected to boost trade and commerce not only between Bangladesh and India, but also with Bhutan and Nepal.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaTrade Facilitation
 

February 2016
Regional Economic Connectivity Initiatives to Change Bangladesh Business Landscape

Regional economic connectivity initiatives, including the Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal Motor Vehicle Agreement, can change the business landscape of Bangladesh, said Bangladesh Foreign Secretary Md. Shahidul Haque at a meeting of the Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry.  The BBIN MVA will transform 30 transport corridors into economic corridors, and is set to give subregional businesses a boost.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaBhutanNepalTransport
 

February 2016
SAARC-ADB First Training Programme of Nodal Points on Updating SAARCSTAT Web Portal

The SAARC-ADB First Training Programme of Nodal Points on Updating SAARCSTAT Web Portal was organised by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS). The Training focused on updating national data available on the SAARCSTAT Web Portal to enhance usability, and equipped representatives from Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka with knowledge and capacity to upload and update their information on the website.
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Tags:  SAARCTradeEconomic cooperationBangladeshBhutanIndiaMaldivesNepalSri Lanka
 

February 2016
Bangladesh and Thailand Discuss Direct Coastal Shipping through Chittagong-Ranong Ports

A delegation from the Port Authority of Thailand and officials from Bangladesh's Ministry of Shipping held the first official discussion on direct coastal shipping connectivity between Bangladesh and Thailand. The two countries agreed to carry out a feasibility study on the Chittagong Port, with the aim of signing a memorandum of understanding.
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Tags:  BangladeshThailandTransport
 

January 2016
2016 International Customs Day: Bangladesh National Board of Revenue

The Bangladesh National Board of Revenue (NBR) organized a seminar on digital Customs and progressive engagement on the occasion of International Customs Day. In his address, Finance Minister Abul Maal Abdul Muhith said the proposed Customs Act 2015 will be placed for approval of the national parliament in the next budget session. It will automate and modernize Customs and business procedures for export-import by providing NBR with a broad legal basis for implementation of an electronic Customs
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Tags:  BangladeshTrade FacilitationCustoms
 

January 2016
3rd Meeting of BBIN Joint Working Group on Subregional Cooperation, Dhaka

The third meeting of the Joint Working Group on Subregional Cooperation between Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and Nepal (BBIN) on Connectivity and Transit and Water Resources Management and Power/Hydropower deliberated new initiatives for deepening cooperation. Discussion centered around progress made under the BBIN Motor Vehicle Agreement and the proposed BBIN Rail Agreement.
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Tags:  BBINTrade FacilitationEnergyTransportBangladeshBhutanIndiaNepal
 

January 2016
Bangladesh-India Railway Links Top Priority for the Government of India

Indian Minister of State for Railways Manoj Sinha led a two-day visit to the northeastern state of Tripura to inaugurate its trial broad gauge passenger train, and review progress of ongoing railway projects, including the Agartala-Akhaura railway project, which connects the rail networks of Bangladesh and India, and Agartala-Sabroom, a future connecting point for Chittagong port in Bangladesh.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaRailTransport
 

January 2016
Transmission Lines Ready to Supply Power from Tripura to Bangladesh

Construction was completed in December 2015 of the 47-kilometer transmission line from India's western Tripura to Bangladesh's southern Comilla and is ready to start supplying 100 megawatt of power from India to Bangladesh. In January 2016, a meeting between Bangladesh and India fixed the tariff for the electricity supply and formal approval will start the flow of power.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaEnergy
 

January 2016
ADB to Continue Supporting RCI Projects in Bangladesh

Strengthening of regional cooperation and integration (RCI) remains a priority of the Asian Development Bank (ADB), according to its Bangladesh Country Operations Business Plan for 2016–2018. In the energy sector, ADB will continue to expand access to and make Bangladesh's power supply more reliable. In the transport sector, ADB will further promote safe, reliable, and fully integrated transport systems that move people and goods more efficiently within the country and across the region.
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Tags:  BangladeshAsian HighwayEnergyTransport
 

January 2016
Chittagong Seaport Records Milestone 2 Million TEU of Containers Handled

Chittagong Seaport attained its 2016 target of handling 2 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEU) of containers one year early. This announcement was made by the Chittagong Port Authority on 3 January 2015 in Dhaka, Bangladesh, with Shipping Minister Shajahan Khan as chief guest. According to Minister Khan, Chittagong Port's container holding capacity increased to 40,000 TEU, owing to a rise in container handling demand, which grew by 700,000 TEU in the last 3 years.
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Tags:  BangladeshTrade FacilitationTradeTransportShipping
 

December 2015
First Funding Tranche Released for New India-Bangladesh Waterway Link

The Government of India has released the first tranche of funding worth around $299,000 to construct a new waterway link between its northeast region and Bangladesh. With total allocation of $1.87 million, the project will link the Gomati and Howrah rivers in Tripura with the Meghna river in Bangladesh, to boost bilateral trade and the movement of people.
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Tags:  IndiaBangladeshTransport
 

December 2015
SASEC Information Highway to Enable Bangladesh to Export Bandwidth in BBIN Region

The SASEC Information Highway Project will enable Bangladesh to export at least 50 gbps of bandwidth to Bhutan, northeast India, and Nepal, said an official from Bangladesh's ICT Division. An initial 10 gbps will initially be imported to India's northeast, which could bring in earnings of around $1.23 million a year. The Indian states of Assam and Meghalaya, and Bhutan, have also expressed interest to import bandwidth.
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Tags:  ICTBangladeshBhutan
 

December 2015
Bangladesh and Nepal Agree to Enhance Bilateral Trade

Bangladesh Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed and Nepal Minister for Commerce and Supplies Ganesh Man Pun discussed Bangladesh-Nepal trade and other trade-related agreements currently being negotiated on the sidelines of the 10th Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organization in Nairobi, Kenya. The two ministers agreed to complete all bilateral trade agreements and fast-track negotiations to promote bilateral trade ties.
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Tags:  BangladeshNepalTrade
 

December 2015
Celebrating 30 Years of SAARC

On 8 December 1985, the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Charter was signed by Heads of State/Government of SAARC Member States during the First SAARC Summit held in Dhaka, Bangladesh. SAARC promotes welfare economics, collective self-reliance among the countries of South Asia, and accelerated socio-cultural development in the South Asia region.
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Tags:  SAARCRegional CooperationSouth AsiaBangladeshBhutanIndiaNepalMaldivesSri Lanka
 

December 2015
Commentary: South Asia Could Be Linchpin for Regional Integration

South Asia is set to play a strategic role in Asian integration. This commentary by Mr. Ganeshan Wignaraja, Advisor in the Asian Development Bank’s Economic Research and Regional Cooperation Department, shares how linking emerging South Asia with the more developed member countries of the Association of South East Asian Nations will transform regional economies through development of regional connectivity, and create a huge regional market of 2-3 billion people.


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Tags:  South AsiaEconomic corridorDevelopmentASEANSoutheast AsiaEast AsiaTrade FacilitationTransportTourismmanufacturingBangladeshBhutanIndiaMaldivesNepal
 

December 2015
DCCI Seminar Highlights Need to Implement Trade Facilitation Measures in Bangladesh

A seminar organized by the Dhaka Chamber of Commerce & Industry (DCCI) discussed 'Trade Facilitation: Opportunities and Challenges for Sustainable Growth' in Bangladesh. Economic Adviser to the Prime Minister Dr. Mashiur Rahman emphasized that trade facilitation measures should boost trade and promote investments. Dr. Khairuzzaman Mozumder, Deputy Chief of USAID, identified remaining key challenges in implementing the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement in the country.
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Tags:  Trade FacilitationBangladeshPrivate Sector
 

December 2015
Customs Cooperation, Bilateral Transport Agreement Discussed at Bangladesh-Bhutan Meeting

A 2-day meeting between Bangladesh and Bhutan headed by Commerce Secretaries discussed several bilateral concerns, including increasing products on the duty-free import/export list of both countries, potential hydropower imports from Bhutan to Bangladesh, Customs cooperation, and road and water transport agreement.
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Tags:  BangladeshBhutanCustomsTrade FacilitationTransportBBIN
 

November 2015
Exchange of Documents at Major SASEC Border-Crossing Points Starts

The exchange of export-related data between designated adjacent border crossing points in the SASEC subregion commenced on 30 November 2015. This SASEC Customs Subgroup Subregional Project promotes the exchange of documents at five major border-crossing points between Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and Nepal, to promote future electronic exchange of data and build a better risk profile of traders.
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Tags:  Trade FacilitationCustomsBangladeshBhutanIndiaNepal
 

November 2015
Bangladesh Development Forum 2015 Discusses Need to Upgrade Regional Connectivity

Bangladesh's development partner representatives participated in deliberations held at the Bangladesh Development Forum 2015, which shared the country’s needs for infrastructure development. Recommendations to help facilitate growth include good regional connectivity, quality infrastructure development, and increasing participation from the private sector.
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Tags:  BangladeshTransportEnergy
 

November 2015
Bangladesh and India Sign SOP on Coastal Shipping

Bangladesh and India signed the Standard Operating Procedure to operationalize the 'Agreement on Coastal Shipping' formalized in June 2015. This Agreement will provide huge savings in logistics costs for cargo transport between the two countries, improving bilateral trade. The two parties have also agreed to sign an agreement on passenger and cruise vessels.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaTrade FacilitationTransport
 

November 2015
BBIN MVA Transit Fees for Goods and Passenger Vehicles to be Finalized

A Meeting for the Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal Motor Vehicle Agreement (BBIN MVA)on 3-4 December 2015 will finalize the transit fees for goods and passenger vehicles, and discuss other issues, said Bangladesh Road Transport Minister Obaidul Quader. Transport of passengers and goods under the BBIN MVA will formally start in January 2016, with initial restrictions in place.
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Tags:  BBINTransportBangladeshBhutanIndiaNepal
 

November 2015
ADB Support for Bangladesh's Transformational Infrastructure Development

Asian Development Bank (ADB) Vice President Wencai Zhang pledged ADB's continuous support for Bangladesh's efforts on regional cooperation and integration in a meeting with Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. He highlighted concrete results of Bangladesh's participation in regional cooperation, and discussed ADB plans to support Bangladesh's transformational infrastructure development.
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Tags:  BangladeshTradeTransportEnergy
 

November 2015
Bangladesh to Complete Needed Links for an Inter-Connected Region

Several initiatives to improve Bangladesh's connectivity with India's North East region are in the pipeline, to increase people-to-people contact and cross-border business. These include revamping trade infrastructures to connect border points, and expanding Bangladesh's diplomatic and consular presence in India's North East region.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaTradeTransportEnergy
 

November 2015
Look Beyond Traditional Economic Thinking to Expand Economic Ties: Sri Lanka High Commissioner in Dhaka

Sri Lanka High Commissioner in Dhaka, Ms. Yasoja Gunasekera said Bangladesh is working toward expanding economic ties with Sri Lanka for their mutual benefit, at an event organized by the Diplomatic Correspondents' Association-Bangladesh. She encouraged both countries to look beyond traditional economic thinking and explore initiatives to promote economic cooperation.
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Tags:  Sri LankaBangladeshTrade
 

November 2015
Bhutan Economic Affairs Minister and Bangladesh Prime Minister Discuss Hydropower Exports

Bhutan Economic Affairs Minister Lyonpo Norbu Wangchuk and Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina discussed the possibility of exporting hydropower from Bhutan to Bangladesh. According to Minister Wangchuk, Bhutan is interested to supply hydropower to Bangladesh at the lowest possible cost to help meet the country's growing demand for electricity.
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Tags:  BangladeshBhutanEnergy
 

October 2015
Bangladesh and Sri Lanka to Sign Free Trade Agreement

Bilateral discussions between Bangladesh and Sri Lanka to sign a Free Trade Agreement enhancing trade and investment cooperation are at the final stage. According to Bangladesh Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed, the two countries are working together to boost trade and increase connectivity. Bangladesh has proposed removal of all non-tariff barriers on exports, including pharmaceutical goods.
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Tags:  TradeBangladeshSri Lanka
 

October 2015
Bangladesh Prime Minister and Sri Lanka High Commissioner Discuss Bilateral Cooperation

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and Sri Lanka High Commissioner Yasoja Gunasekera discussed a possible scope of cooperation during a courtesy call paid by the High Commissioner to the Prime Minister in October. Prime Minister Hasina encouraged more Sri Lankan investments and joint ventures in Bangladesh's 22 special economic zones. Bangladesh is also considering introducing a sea route to Sri Lanka.
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Tags:  BangladeshSri LankaTradeEnergyTransport
 

October 2015
High-Level Meeting in India Stresses Need for Better Connectivity in the North East Region

A Meeting between India's Minister for External Affairs and Governors of the North East region covered key aspects of the 'Act East Policy', including transport connectivity, border trade, and regional production and value chains. The Meeting stressed the need for better connectivity of the North East to a wider region, including Bangladesh, Myanmar, and Thailand, and discussed ongoing and planned cross-border connectivity projects.
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Tags:  IndiaAct East PolicyTransportTrade FacilitationBangladesh
 

October 2015
SASEC Energy Project to Double the Capacity of India-Bangladesh Electricity Network

The Second SASEC Bangladesh-India Electrical Grid Interconnection Project will help boost the import of electricity from India to Bangladesh by doubling the capacity of the existing interconnection system. The project is expected to be completed by June 2018. The Asian Development Bank is providing $120 million loan financing; the Government of Bangladesh is allocating $63 million.
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Tags:  EnergyBangladeshIndia
 

September 2015
India's Power Grid Commissions Transmission Express Highway

The Power Grid Corporation of India began power transmission along its first "Power Transmission Express Highway". With a 6,000-megawatt capacity, this power corridor connects the northern states with the North Eastern Region, and will help both manage the supply of large-scale hydropower and connect power transactions done with Bhutan, Bangladesh, and Nepal.
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Tags:  EnergyIndiaBhutanBangladeshNepal
 

September 2015
ADB Scales Up Financing for Preparation of Subregional Transport Projects in Bangladesh

The Asian Development Bank has approved additional financing for a SASEC transport project that supports preparation of high-priority railway and road projects in Bangladesh along the Trans-Asian Railway and the Asian Highway network. These transport projects will enhance cross-border traffic, expanding connectivity in the Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal subregion and forming links between South Asia and Southeast Asia.
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Tags:  BangladeshTransportRailPortsBBIN
 

September 2015
Commentary: Implementation of WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement in Bangladesh

Read a commentary on the implementation of the Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) in Bangladesh. The TFA provides a series of measures to facilitate smooth and efficient movement of goods across borders inspired by best practices from around the world. It is expected to benefit all members of the World Trade Organization, including Bangladesh.
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Tags:  BangladeshTrade FacilitationTrade Facilitation Agreement
 

September 2015
Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal Discuss MVA Protocols in Dhaka

The Ministry of Road Transport and Bridges, Bangladesh is hosting a two-day Secretary-level meeting of Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal (BBIN) to discuss the protocols of the BBIN Motor Vehicles Agreement (MVA). Secretary of Road Transport and Highways Division, MoRTB, said Bangladesh will allow cross-border cargo transport on roads connected to functional land ports.
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Tags:  BBINBangladeshTransport
 

September 2015
Bangladesh Businessmen Call for Better Land Port Infrastructure

Bangladesh businessmen envisage increased trade with India if constraints on land port infrastructure are addressed. Land ports and land Customs stations play a significant role in the country's trade within the subregion. Current limitations in infrastructure, communication, and excessive documentation create hurdles for trade efficiency.
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Tags:  BangladeshTrade FacilitationPrivate Sector
 

September 2015
Strategic Master Plan for Chittagong Port Unveiled

A new master plan outlining a long-term vision for Chittagong Port has been unveiled in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Development under the plan is expected to increase port efficiency and is estimated to cost around $1.9 billion. The master plan financed through SASEC Program technical assistance funded by the Asian Development Bank.
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Tags:  BangladeshPortsTrade Facilitation
 

September 2015
Development of Land Ports in Bangladesh to Boost Regional Trade

The Government of Bangladesh will develop the country's land ports to spur regional trade, undertaking around $84.76 million worth of projects to improve land port infrastructure, warehouse facilities, Customs control procedures, and the institutional and regulatory framework. This initiative will facilitate more efficient movement of goods by cutting border-crossing times to and from Bangladesh, toward Bhutan, India, and Nepal.
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Tags:  Trade FacilitationBangladeshBBIN
 

August 2015
Bangladesh Prepares to Enact New Customs Law

The National Board of Revenue of Bangladesh is set to present the Customs Act of 2015 for passage in the September parliamentary session. The new Customs Law, which aims to facilitate smooth international trade, reduce time and cost of doing business, and create a better investment climate, will replace the existing 1969 Customs Law.
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Tags:  BangladeshTrade FacilitationCustoms
 

August 2015
Border Markets along Bangladesh-India See Increase in Local Trade

A meeting of the commerce ministries of Bangladesh and India to renew the Memorandum of Understanding for Bangladesh-India border markets agreed to double the purchase limit for buyers. This decision comes as the two countries prepare to set up more markets to boost bilateral ties and trade.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaTrade
 

August 2015
Bangladesh's New Export Policy Emphasizes Trade with Neighbors

A meeting of Bangladesh's Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs approved the Bangladesh Export Policy 2015-2018. The new export policy highlights increasing trade with Bhutan, India, and Nepal, and targets $60 billion in annual export turnover by 2021.
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Tags:  BangladeshTradeBBIN
 

August 2015
Bangladesh and Bhutan Customs Begin Sharing Trade Data

A Meeting of the Joint Group of Customs of Bangladesh and Bhutan held in Thimphu, Bhutan on 26-27 July agreed to share export-import data from Phuentsholing and Burimari Customs stations. The Meeting also decided to consider opening Bangladesh's Chilmari and Roumari river routes to increase access between the two countries.
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Tags:  BangladeshBhutanTrade Facilitation
 

August 2015
Commentary on the BBIN MVA as Positive Development for Subregional Cooperation

Read a commentary on the Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal (BBIN) Motor Vehicles Agreement (MVA) as positive development for the BBIN subregional grouping. The BBIN MVA is a landmark framework agreement that aims to facilitate seamless flow of passenger, personal and cargo vehicular traffic between and among the BBIN countries.
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Tags:  BBINTransportBangladeshBhutanIndiaNepal
 

August 2015
Bangladesh as New Investment Destination for Indian Investors

Bangladesh is seen as the new investment destination for Indian investors, particularly with the series of bilateral agreements signed between the two countries in June 2015. Trading and exporting appears lucrative for Indian businessmen due to Bangladesh’s weak manufacturing base, tariff-free access to developed markets, geographical proximity, and resilient economy.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaFDI
 

August 2015
Bangladesh’s First Trade Surplus with Nepal in 10 Years

Bangladesh recorded a trade surplus with Nepal in 2014-2015 for the first time in 10 years, due to a decrease in lentil imports. Nepal Transit and Warehousing Company figures show Nepal exported goods worth about $10.8 million, against imports of about $23.9 million last fiscal year.
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Tags:  BangladeshNepalTrade
 

August 2015
Bangladesh Special Economic Zones Considered Under India’s Line of Credit

The Bangladesh Government is set to approve in principle the establishment of a special economic zone for Indian investors in Mongla and Bheramara under India’s $2 billion line of credit (LOC). A Development Project Proposal is under consideration by the Executive Committee of National Economic Council. The Indian LOC would contribute $2 billion toward the total cost estimate of $2.37 billion for the 13 projects under the Memorandum of Understanding.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaSpecial Economic Zone
 

August 2015
Bangladesh Cabinet Approves Proposal to Upgrade Dhaka-Northwest Corridor

A Cabinet Committee Meeting on Public Purchase of the Government of Bangladesh approved four proposals for ongoing infrastructure projects, including contract awarding upgrade of a 70-kilometer long section of the Dhaka-Northwest corridor from two to four lanes. This road enhancement is being financed under the Bangladesh SASEC Road Connectivity Project.
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Tags:  BangladeshTransportEnergy
 

August 2015
Dhaka-Sylhet Highway to be Widened into Four-Lane Road

The Bangladesh Government will take steps to widen the Dhaka-Sylhet highway to four lanes to facilitate the flow of traffic, following completion of a feasibility study and detailed design of this national highway. The study was conducted by the Road and Highways Department, Bangladesh, with funding from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) technical assistance.
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Tags:  BangladeshTransportConnectivity
 

July 2015
Bangladesh and Bhutan Customs Officials Discuss Removal of Non-Tariff Barriers

Customs officials from Bangladesh and Bhutan met on 27 July 2015 in Thimphu, Bhutan to discuss removal of barriers that restrict bilateral trade, and the sharing of import and export data between the two countries. As important trading partners, Bangladesh and Bhutan are working to resolve non-tariff barriers to enhance trade efficiency and boost the exchange of goods.
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Tags:  BangladeshBhutanTrade Facilitation
 

July 2015
Indian Government Approves India-Bangladesh Rail Link

The Indian Government sanctioned about $155.8 million to lay a 15.06-kilometer (km) section of railtracks, connecting Indian Railways with Bangladesh through the North East. This India-funded Agartala-Akhaura railway junction in Bangladesh would reduce the distance from Agartala to Kolkata from 1,650 km to 515 km, avoid mountainous terrain, improve trade and commerce, and enhance connectivity.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaRail
 

July 2015
Bangladesh Setting Up National Single Window

An inter-ministerial meeting in Bangladesh reached consensus to set up a National Single Window (NSW) to facilitate cross-border trade and reduce the cost of doing business. The NSW will use a virtual system through which different organizations will be interconnected. The National Board of Revenue's Customs wing will be lead agency for the NSW.


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Tags:  BangladeshTrade FacilitationCustoms
 

July 2015
India Releases Full Padma Bridge Grant, Asks Bangladesh to Start New Loan Implementation

The full $200 million grant pledged by India to Bangladesh for construction of Padma Bridge under a $1 billion loan agreement has been disbursed. A recent meeting between India and Bangladesh also discussed implementation of a $2 billion loan agreement signed during India Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit in June 2015.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaTransport
 

July 2015
ADB Power Grid Loan Under Preparation

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has set three conditions for the $120 million loan that will finance expansion of the Bangladesh-India Electrical Grid Interconnection Project: public notification of tariff regulations, issuing bids for power purchase from India, and written confirmation from the power grid corporation of India for transmission of an additional 500 megawatt of electricity to Bangladesh.


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Tags:  BangladeshEnergyIndia
 

July 2015
India’s North Eastern States Receive Internet Gateway at Agartala via Bangladesh

India’s Communications and Information Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad laid the foundation stone on 13 July 2015 to link Agartala, India in the Tripura border area with International Gateway Service at Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. This will strengthen telecommunications services and improve Internet connectivity in the landlocked North Eastern states of India.
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Tags:  BangladeshICTIndia
 

June 2015
BBIN Highlights Need for Road and Railway Connectivity

With the recent approval of the regional transit deal among four nations – Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal – traffic volume will take a further upturn. The Government of Bangladesh plans to build a ‘Dhaka Bypass’ at about US$30.87 million under a public-private partnership initiative to improve traffic congestion in the overcrowded city.
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Tags:  BangladeshBBINTransport
 

June 2015
Commentaries on BBIN MVA from Across the Subregion

Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal formed a subregional grouping under the Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal (BBIN) Framework, and signed a Motor Vehicles Agreement (MVA) allowing seamless transit across each other's territories at the Meeting of Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal Transport Ministers on Regional Road Transport Connectivity. Several commentaries from across the region have been published on the BBIN MVA, and are shared below.
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Tags:  BangladeshBhutanIndiaNepalBBINTransport
 

June 2015
ADB to Support US$6 Billion in Regional Connectivity Projects

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) plans to provide about US$6 billion for projects in Bangladesh, including regional connectivity road transport and railway networks. ADB – through its country partnership program 2016-2018 – is committed to supporting regional connectivity in South Asia that boosts trade and commerce.
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Tags:  ADBBangladeshTransport
 

June 2015
SASEC Railway Connectivity Project Facilitates Subregional Connectivity

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is set to further enhance transport connectivity within Bangladesh, and between Bangladesh and India, through the SASEC Railway Connectivity: Akhaura-Laksam Double Track Project. This $505 million ADB project will upgrade critical sections of Bangladesh Railway's Dhaka-Chittagong corridor and boost its market share in freight services.
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Tags:  TransportBangladeshRailIndia
 

June 2015
Modi’s Dhaka Visit Promises to Strengthen Bilateral Relations

Several agreements were signed during Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Dhaka, Bangladesh on 6-7 June 2015. The agreements included a $2 billion line of credit, as well as others in the areas of trade, connectivity, and cooperation in power supply. The two-day visit further strengthened bilateral relations between the two neighboring countries.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaBilateral Trade
 

May 2015
Coastal Shipping Approved between India and Bangladesh

The Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, approved the Agreement on Coastal Shipping between India and Bangladesh to carry out coastal movement of goods between the two countries. Bangladesh is currently India’s largest trade partner in South Asia and the coastal route is expected to provide an alternative route for transportation of import-export cargo between the two countries.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaTransport
 

May 2015
India Pledges Second Line of Credit to Bangladesh for Transport, Energy

A month after India pledged another Line of Credit to Bangladesh, the Economic Relations Division, Ministry of Finance of the Government of Bangladesh prepared 11 development project proposals on various sectors including transport, education, information technology, and energy. The total cost of the proposed projects is estimated at $2.71 billion.
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Tags:  BangladeshEconomyIndiaTransport
 

May 2015
Third Airport Terminal Receives Nod from Bangladesh Prime Minister

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina gave the directive to go ahead with the construction of the third terminal of Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport to handle growing passenger capacity and strengthen connectivity in the international arena. PM Hasina views Bangladesh as an important hub – a bridge between East and West.
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Tags:  BangladeshTransportInfrastructure
 

May 2015
India-Bangladesh Protocol on Inland Water Transit and Trade Potential

At the seminar on ‘Bangladesh-India Protocol on Inland Water Transit and Trade: Challenges and Opportunities’, held in Dhaka, Bangladesh on 13 May 2015, policy and economic experts urged the two governments to remove navigation problems, reform customs procedures, develop ports, address lack of infrastructure facilities, and resolve policy constraints to tap into the potential of inland water transit.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaTransport
 

May 2015
Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar Economic Corridor Could Deepen Economic Integration

The Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar Economic Corridor (BCIM-EC) – which received formal endorsement through an inter-governmental group meeting in December 2013 – could potentially bring significant benefits to the four countries by deepening economic cooperation and integration. BCIM-EC will increase socio-economic development and trade in South Asia.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaEconomic corridor
 

April 2015
Bangladesh Exports Bandwidth to India

The Cabinet of Bangladesh approved a 3-year agreement to export 10 gigabytes to India’s northeastern states on lease and commercial basis. State-owned entity Bangladesh Submarine Cable Company Ltd (BSCCL) and Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) signed the “Agreement Between BSNL and BSCCL for Leasing of International Bandwidth for Internet at Akhaura (Zero Point)”.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaICT
 

April 2015
India, Bangladesh Ratify Coastal Shipping Agreement

A coastal shipping agreement between Bangladesh and India was ratified on 21 April 2015 in New Delhi. Bangladesh Shipping Secretary Shafiq Alam Mehedi and Indian Shipping Secretary Rajib Kumar ratified the deal to facilitate trade and transportation of goods through water routes between the two countries.
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Tags:  IndiaBangladeshTransport
 

April 2015
Revised India-Bangladesh Trade Agreement Promotes Further Trade in the Subregion

The Bangladesh Cabinet approved proposed amendments to the India-Bangladesh Trade Agreement allowing the two countries to access each other's rail, road, and sea routes for third-country trade. The agreement is a boon to trade in the subregion, paving the way for Bangladesh to transport products to Bhutan and Nepal, and for India to send goods directly to Myanmar.
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Tags:  TradeBangladeshIndia
 

April 2015
Bangladesh Government Clears Grid Interconnection Projects to Boost Energy Supply

The Government of Bangladesh gave the go signal for two energy projects that will boost the country's capacity to import electricity from India. The two projects, roughly amounting to $204.6 million, will allow the country to import 600 megawatt electricity by boosting the country's transmission capacity and establishing a substation. Regional grid connectivity demonstrates the substantial benefits that come from enhanced regional cooperation.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaEnergy
 

March 2015
SAFTA Certificates for Bangladesh Small Garment Makers

The Government of Bangladesh will issue South Asian Free Trade Agreement (SAFTA) certificates to allow South Asian countries to export at lower duty and receive duty benefits while shipping products in eight South Asian countries. The EPB recently decided to issue certificates to smaller apparel makers to help them export to neighboring countries and meet the growing demand of low-cost garments from Bangladesh.
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Tags:  SAFTABangladeshTrade
 

March 2015
Bangladesh-India Second Railway Link

Bangladesh and India moved to establish a second cross-border railway link through Akhaura-Agartala to boost bilateral trade and business. The dual-gauge railway track to be funded by the Government of India will connect with the North-Eastern States of India and become the second effective railway corridor of the two neighboring countries.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaRail
 

February 2015
Railway Sector Investment Program Approaching Completion

The Railway Sector Investment Program, approved by the Asian Development Bank on October 2006 as a multitranche financing facility with total cost of $537.5 million, is approaching completion within 2015. The project contributes to sustainable economic growth and poverty reduction in Bangladesh by improving the country's railway network.
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Tags:  BangladeshTransportPoverty Reduction
 

February 2015
Bangladesh Nominated as LDC Coordinator for WTO in 2015

Bangladesh has once again been nominated as least developed countries’ (LDC) coordinator for 2015—its first time was in 1996 when former Industries and Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed attended the WTO Ministerial Conference in Singapore. Bangladesh was nominated due to its vital role and experience in bargaining with the developed world on behalf of the LDCs.
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Tags:  BangladeshWTOLDC
 

February 2015
Bangladesh-India Business Council by April 2015

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has proposed a joint business council for Bangladesh and India to meet by April 2015 to address existing disputes in bilateral trade and business. The proposal followed discussions with business leaders during a 3-day visit to Sonargaon, Bangladesh.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaBilateral Trade
 

February 2015
Bangladesh Identifies Nine Sectors for Development Cooperation with India

The Bangladesh Prime Minister’s Office has identified nine priority sectors for development cooperation with India under an umbrella agreement: power and hydropower, energy, commerce, connectivity (rail, road, water and motor vehicle), customs and immigration regulations, water management, and capacity building and capital dredging of Mongla Port.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaDevelopment Cooperation
 

February 2015
Bangladesh-Nepal Expo 2015 Showcases Potential Areas of Trade

The first Bangladesh-Nepal Expo 2015 in Kathmandu, Nepal attracted about 100 private businesses and more than 10,000 visitors. Enterprises from Bangladesh showcased the wide variety of products Nepal’s business community can source from Bangladesh. The fair opened potential areas of trade and encouraged entrepreneurs from both countries to create business linkages with each other.
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Tags:  BangladeshNepalBilateral TradeTrade
 

February 2015
Motor Vehicles Deal Underway for Seamless Transport through BBIN Subregion

An agreement that will enable seamless transit of  passenger and goods along designated key routes in the Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal (BBIN) subregion is in the pipeline. It will reduce costly and time-consuming unloading and loading of people and cargo at border crossing points. The agreement would help transform transport corridors linking BBIN into economic corridors and enhance people-to-people contact.
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Tags:  TransportBangladeshBhutanIndiaNepal
 

January 2015
SASEC Region Trade Integration Indicators Updated

Intra-regional trade share among South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation (SASEC) countries increased from 2011-2013 as economic exchange within the region strengthened, although overall intra-Asia trade declined. SASEC intra-regional trade also increased in the first seven months of 2014 compared to the same period in 2013, yet its trade with the world decreased.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaTrade
 

January 2015
Bangladesh Potential in Economic Expansion Placed at 7.3%

Asian Development Bank Chief Economist Shang Jin-Wei has put Bangladesh’s potential to grow at 7.3%, above its current average of 6%. Despite its vast infrastructure needs, this makes Bangladesh one of the top 20 global performers in economic expansion. To continue this level of growth, it needs a reliable supply of power to reduce the cost of doing business.
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Tags:  BangladeshEnergyRegional Cooperation
 

January 2015
Third India-Bangladesh Border Haat Inaugurated

Bangladesh Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed and India Minister for Commerce and Industry Nirmala Sitharaman jointly inaugurated the first border market (“haat”) along the Tripura-Bangladesh frontier on 13 January 2015. Both ministers spoke optimistically about new opportunities for trade during the inauguration ceremony.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaTradeTransport
 

January 2015
Bangladesh: Future Middle-Income Country Status to Have No Effect on EU Trade Benefit

The Government of Bangladesh aims to graduate to middle-income country status by 2021. Once it reaches middle-income status, it will not enjoy duty-free benefit under GSP but move to the ‘GSP Plus’ scheme. Bangladesh will have to sign four international conventions on human rights, labor rights, environment, and governance to enjoy GSP Plus benefit from the EU.
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Tags:  BangladeshTradeWTO
 

December 2014
ADB to Fund Infrastructure and Energy Projects in Bangladesh

The Asian Development Bank, along with other bilateral donors, will fund US$4.5 billion worth of infrastructure and energy-related projects in Bangladesh. The Economic Relations Division of the Bangladesh Ministry of Finance is seeking funding from ADB for four projects, including upgradation of Bheramara HVDC station to import additional 500MW power from India.
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Tags:  InfrastructureEnergyBangladesh
 

December 2014
Bhutan Trucks May Now Enter Bangladesh

Bhutanese trucks carrying import/export cargo are now able to enter Bangladesh via India, according to Bangladesh Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed during a visit to Bhutanese Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay on 7 December 2014. The new agreement will allow trucks to carry products directly from Bangladesh for import to Bhutan.
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Tags:  BhutanBangladeshTransportTrade Facilitation
 

December 2014
Bilateral Talks Between Bangladesh and Bhutan

Bhutan’s Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay has agreed with Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to close trade gaps by exporting more goods and expanding the list of products free of tax and duty enjoyed by both countries. Bhutan’s total trade volume with Bangladesh is worth about US$ 25.6 million. Bangladesh is the only country in the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation region in which Bhutan has a trade surplus.
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Tags:  BangladeshBhutanBilateral Trade
 

November 2014
India-Bangladesh Trade Gap Continues to Widen

In recent decades, Bangladesh has emerged as one of the largest export markets for India in the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation region. From 1988-1989 to 1992-1993, India’s total exports increased by 164%, while the increase in imports to Bangladesh was 293%.
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Tags:  IndiaBangladeshTrade
 

November 2014
BINA Visit Border Crossings Ahead of SAARC Summit

Bhutanese Ambassador Pema Choden, Indian High Commissioner Pankaj Saran, and Nepalese Ambassador Hari Kumar Shrestha visited the Land Customs Stations of Burimari-Changrabandha (Bangladesh-India), Phuentsholing-Jaigaon (Bhutan-India), Kakarbhitta-Panitanki (Nepal-India) and Phulbari-Banglabandha (India-Bangladesh) on 9-12 November 2014. BINA took the land route used by traders of Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaNepal
 

October 2014
PM Hasina Calls for Stronger Asia-Europe Connectivity

Prime Minister of Bangladesh Sheikh Hasina addressed the Plenary Session of the 10th Asia-Europe Meeting Summit 2014 and called for a more favorable trade regime, stronger technical cooperation, and better Asia-Europe connectivity. The European Union is Bangladesh’s largest export destination and Asia is Europe’s main trading partner with about US$2 trillion of Asia-Europe trade.
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Tags:  BangladeshAsia-EuropeTrade
 

October 2014
SASEC Assists Bangladesh Strengthen Infrastructure Development

The Asian Development Bank’s South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation Program will finance key infrastructure projects worth $492 million under its country operations business plan: the second Bangladesh-India electrical grid interconnection ($105 million), Dohazari-Cox’s Bazar railway link ($217 million), and road and trade facilitation ($170 million).
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Tags:  BangladeshRegional CooperationEnergyTrade Facilitation
 

October 2014
Tripura Set to Supply Power to Bangladesh

Indian Deputy High Commissioner in Dhaka Mr. Sandeep Chakravorty paid a 3-day visit to India's state of Tripura in October to meet ministers and top officials and review progress made in several India-Bangladesh infrastructure projects. Following his meeting with Power Minister Mr. Manik Dey, Chakravorty revealed that India has initiated steps to ensure 100 megawatt of power will be supplied to Bangladesh from Tripura's Palatana power plant.
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Tags:  EnergyBangladeshIndia
 

September 2014
Prime Minister Modi Affirms SAARC as a Strong Regional Block

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi held separate bilateral meetings with Sri Lanka President Mahinda Rajapaksa, Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, and Nepal Prime Minister Sushil Koirala. The neighboring leaders discussed their support for the ‘neighborhood first’ policy and affirmed their commitment to South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) as a regional block that can solve common problems.
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Tags:  IndiaBangladeshNepalSri Lanka
 

September 2014
Indian Prime Minister Receives Foreign Minister of Bangladesh

Bangladesh Foreign Minister Mr. Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali visited Prime Minister Shri Narenda Modi in New Delhi for the 3rd Meeting of the India-Bangladesh Joint Consultative Commission (JCC) on 19 September 2014. Foreign Minister Ali expressed appreciation for Prime Minister Modi's leadership and relations with the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation.
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Tags:  IndiaBangladeshRegional Cooperation
 

September 2014
Bangladesh to Sign MOU for Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank

Bangladesh has agreed in principle to join the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank established by China in early 2014 to invest in infrastructure construction in Asia and promote economic cooperation. Economic Relations Division Secretary Mohammad Mejbahuddin will sign the Memorandum of Understanding in October.
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Tags:  BangladeshRegional CooperationRegional Development Bank
 

September 2014
BIMSTEC Secretariat Inaugurated in Dhaka

The Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) Secretariat headquarters was formally opened on 13 September 2014 in Dhaka, Bangladesh with Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina leading the inaugural ceremonies.
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Tags:  BIMSTECBangladeshTransportTechnical Assistance
 

August 2014
Bangladesh to Open Sea Ports to Neighbors

Following a meeting with Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on the sidelines of an India-Bangladesh business conclave on 24 August 2014, Tripura Industries and Commerce Minister Tapan Chakraborty said that Bangladesh will allow neighboring countries to use Ashuganj and Chittagong sea ports for multi-modal transport. This move is expected to further enhance economic integration among South Asian countries.
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Tags:  BangladeshBilateral TradeIndiaConnectivityTransport
 

August 2014
Bangladesh Joins BRICS Bank

Bangladesh's decided to join the $50 billion New Development Bank formed by Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa (BRICS) as an alternative source of development funding other than the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF). In joining the New Development Bank, Bangladesh will have more options to receive concessional investments, further develop the country's infrastructure, and lessen loan costs from multinational banks.
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Tags:  BRICSBangladeshDevelopment Bank
 

August 2014
Bangladesh Finance Minister Bullish about Relations with India

Bangladesh Finance Minister Mr. Abul Maal Abdul Muhith told reporters that good relations between Bangladesh and India are beneficial to both countries. Prior to the press interview, Finance Minister Muhith met with visiting Asian Development Bank Vice President Mr. Bindu Lohani to discuss further enhancing connectivity between Bangladesh and India.
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Tags:  BangladeshBilateral TradeIndiaTransport
 

August 2014
Nepal to Sign Power Deal with Bangladesh

After striking a similar deal in India, Nepal is set to sign a power trade agreement with Bangladesh. A Memorandum of Understanding is expected to be vetted by Nepal and presented during the power sector cooperation meeting in December, after the South Asia Association for Regional Cooperation summit. Hydropower produced in Nepal through power sector cooperation, would be exported to Bangladesh through India's power corridor.
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Tags:  NepalBangladeshEnergyIndia
 

July 2014
Reducing Practical Barriers to Trade

The World Economic Forum's Global Enabling Trade Report: 2014 offers a tool to monitor progress on implementing measures for the Trade Facilitation Agreement. It provides insights on how countries in South Asia can significantly gain from the $1 trillion boost the Trade Facilitation Agreement is expected to bring to the global economy.
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Tags:  Trade FacilitationTrade PolicyPoverty ReductionBangladeshIndiaNepalSouth AsiaTrade Facilitation AgreementTradeWTO
 

July 2014
Sri Lanka-Bangladesh Trade Crosses $100 Million for the First Time

As Sri Lanka-Bangladesh trade crosses the $100 million mark for the first time, Bangladesh seeks to set up an investment promotion mechanism to increase trade volumes and improve bilateral trade. The Investment Protection Agreement (IPA) incorporates investment fundamentals for Bangladesh investors looking at Sri Lanka as a future trade partner.
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Tags:  Sri LankaBangladeshBilateral Trade
 

July 2014
Chittagong Port Sees Steady Increase in Container Handling

Bangladesh's Chittagong Port recorded a rise of 10.46% in container handling during fiscal year 2013-2014. This statistic counts as Chittagong Port's biggest growth in terms of cargo handled. ADB approved the Chittagong Port Trade Facilitation Project in October 2004 to increase the capacity of its container terminal.
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Tags:  Trade FacilitationTransportBangladesh
 

July 2014
Dhaka-Chittagong Expressway Prepared for PPP

The Asian Development Bank-financed Dhaka-Chittagong Expressway Public-Private Partnership Design Project will assist the Government of Bangladesh to prepare detailed engineering design documents of the existing two-lane Dhaka-Chittagong highway that will be developed into a six-lane freeway. It will provide badly-needed additional road capacity. Several firms were chosen in the joint venture that is expected complete the project in 2023.
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Tags:  TransportBangladeshIndia
 

June 2014
AmCham in Bangladesh Briefed on SASEC and Regional Cooperation

The American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham) in Bangladesh was briefed by Mr. Kazuhiko Higuchi, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) Country Director for Bangladesh, and chief guest at AmCham’s monthly meeting on 26 June 2014.
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Tags:  Regional CooperationBangladeshAmerican Chamber of Commerce
 

February 2014
Upgrade of Jaidevpur-Chandra-Tangail-Elenga Highway in Bangladesh Underway

Aligned with South Asia Sub-regional Economic Cooperation (SASEC), the Government of Bangladesh will implement a Tk 27.88 billion ($358. 59 million) project to upgrade the Jaidevpur-Chandra-Tangail-Elenga highway which forms part of Asian Highway-2, Asian Hghway-41, and SAARC Highway Corridor-4 to facilitate road connectivity with neighboring countries.
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Tags:  TransportConnectivityBangladesh
 

November 2012
ADB Assisting South Asia to Reduce Trade Barriers

ADB is providing $48 million to help goods move more smoothly in and out of Bangladesh Bhutan and Nepal.
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Tags:  ADBBangladeshBhutanCustomsNepalSASECSouth AsiaTradeTrade Facilitation
 

April 2012
SASEC Countries Sign Bilateral Interconnection Agreements

During the Bilateral Interconnection Agreement Meeting held on 25-27 April 2012 in Manila major telecommunication providers from SASEC countries signed agreements for the direct peering and exchange of internet traffic through high speed fiber-optic links to be built under the Information Highway.
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Tags:  ADBBangladeshBhutanICTNepalRegional Integration
 

March 2012
Dhaka-Chittagong Expressway Public-Private Partnership Design Project

Road transport is the primary mode of land transportation in Bangladesh responsible for 70% of passengers and 60% of freight.
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Tags:  ADBBangladeshPublic-Private PartnershipRoadTransport