INDIA/ BANGLADESH: Prime Minister Modi and his Bangladesh counterpart, Sheikh Hasina, inaugurated the first India-Bangladesh cross-border pipeline today, via video conference. The entire infrastructure cost around 377 crores, including the expenditure of Rs 285 crore from the portion on the Bangladesh side. According to the statement of the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), “Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Prime Minister of Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina, will inaugurate the India-Bangladesh friendship pipeline (IBFPL) on March 18 at 1700 hours (IST) via video-conference.”
The length of the pipeline has been increased by about 131.5 km, and it will be used to send diesel from India to Bangladesh. It can transport 1 million metric tonnes of high-speed diesel every year to seven districts in north Bangladesh.
The energy pipeline runs from the Siliguri-based marketing terminal of the Numaligarh Refinery Limited (NRL) to the Parbatipur depot of the Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation (BPC). As per the reports, the supply will start in June this year.
According to the MEA, India became Bangladesh’s first development cooperation partner when it came to providing money during the last fiscal year. Through three of its biggest bilateral Lines of Credit, the Indian government provided Bangladesh with concessional loans totaling almost USD 10 billion. India is becoming the largest export destination for Bangladesh in Asia.
The PMO said, “The operation of the India-Bangladesh Friendship Pipeline will put in place a sustainable, reliable, cost-effective, and environment-friendly mode of transporting HSD from India to Bangladesh and will further enhance cooperation in energy security between the two countries.”
India has a well-connected train network that was used to transport Bangladesh’s basic necessities via the land route. However, the pandemic caused a disruption.
India and Bangladesh have made promising advancements in boosting trade and political capital over the past 50 years.
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