During the official visit of H.E Sheikh Hasina ,Prime
Minister of People`s Republic of Bangladesh to India , a Standard Operating
Procedure (SOP) wherein Bangladesh allowed the use of its Chattogram and Mongla
Ports for movement of goods to and from India through its territory was signed
and exchanged by India and Bangladesh before the Prime Ministers of India
and Bangladesh on 5.10.2019.
The SOP on use of Chattogram and Mongla ports has been
finalized after the two countries signed an MOU on 6.6.2015 and an Agreement on
The agreement provides eight routes
The agreement and SOP permit the movement of goods in
Bangladesh through waterways, rail, road or multi-modal transport. Eight routes
are provided under the Agreement which would enable access of North East Region
(NER) via Bangladesh. The routes are:
Port to Agartala (Tripura) via Akhura
Port to Dawki (Meghalaya) via Tamabil
Port to Sutarkandi (Assam) via Sheola
Port to Srimantpur (Tripura) via Bibirbazar
(and vice versa)
the SOP reduces distance time and
logistic cost for transport of goods
The conclusion of the SOP on Chattogram and
Mongla ports would reduce distance, time and logistic cost for transport
of goods and is a win win situation for both the economies.
Three landlocked states of India viz. Assam, Meghalaya
and Tripura will get access to open sea trade routes from Chattogram and Mongla
ports via Indian ports.
Tripura will be connected to Chattogram Port through
the Maitree Setu on Feni river at Sabroom in South Tripura and Ramgarh in
Bangladesh. While Agartala is 135 kms from Sabroom, Chattogram port is 75 kms
Now, larger ships destined for North East
can call at Chattogram and Mongla ports
transportation through IBP waterway route from Kolkata/ Haldia to North East is
limited to 2000 ton vessels. Now, larger ships carrying cargo destined for
North East can call at Chattogram and Mongla ports thereby increasing trade
volumes and reducing logistic costs.
Under the Protocol on Inland Water Transit and Trade,
in addition to the five Ports of Call (POC), Dhubri (India) and Pangaon
(Bangladesh) have been added and both countries have agreed to add for more
POCs in each country.
Dredging has commenced under an MOU signed by the two
countries on development of fairway in selected stretches of Bangladesh
waterways with Government of India bearing 80 % of the project expenditure and
the balance by Govt. of Bangladesh.
Cruise services have also commenced between the two
countries promoting people to people contact after an MOU and SOP were signed.