Indian High Commissioner to Bangladesh Vikram Kumar Doraiswami on Tuesday said India is very much interested in using the internal river routes of Bangladesh for goods transportation.
The High Commissioner paid a courtesy visit to Dhaka Chamber of Commerce & Industry (DCCI) and had a bilateral trade talk with the President of DCCI Rizwan Rahman.
"We’re also very keen to expedite the use of Bangladesh’s existing river ports for goods transportation, but this needs a few regulatory things to be done, including river dredging," he said.
He also urged for infrastructure development and technological advancement of all the land ports of Bangladesh to expedite faster export and import processes.
There are five railway crossings that are connected between the two sides now.
He said for goods export and import, railway can be the best cost-effective option and he renewed his call for railway infrastructure and capacity development.
Doraiswami said Bangladesh can export edible oil to India with at 20 percent value addition to the product.
"We would like to establish a unique mechanism to allow Bangladesh’s BSTI certification, especially for the food products as well as other products, including steel, in a reciprocal manner," he said.
The cost of transportation and time between Delhi and Chattogram Port is unendurably high, the High Commissioner said.
He urged the business community of both the countries to convince the government to upgrade goods transportation facilities.
During the discussion, DCCI President Rizwan Rahman said that the bilateral trade between Bangladesh and India was US$ 6.9 billion in FY 2019-20 where Bangladesh’s export to India was USD 1.10 billion against the import of USD 5.79 billion.
The total FDI Stock from India to Bangladesh as of September, 2020 was USD 645.54 million.
Since 2017, Bangladeshi jute products have been facing anti-dumping duties ranging between USD 19 and USD 351.72 per ton while exporting to India, he added.
BDST: 1830 HRS, FEB 23, 2021