India, Bangladesh to discuss vehicle entry, border marketsMay 10th, 2011 - 8:50 pm ICT by IANS
Shillong, May 10 (IANS) India and Bangladesh are expected to finalise rules for entry of goods vehicles into either country and review re-opening of border “haats” (markets) at a meeting of customs officials here Wednesday, an official said Tuesday.
The Indian side will be led by North East Customs Commissioner S.R Baruah, while the Bangladeshi delegation will be headed by Commissioner of Customs (Dhaka North) Mohammad Enayet Hossain at the two-day meet.
“The main agenda of the meeting is to finalise the standard operating procedures (SOP) for monitoring of entry and exit of vehicles at land customs stations on the India-Bangladesh border,” Baruah told IANS.
Under the SOPs, all the goods-laden trucks will have a prescribed form of the customs departments, bearing all necessary information that the customs officials need for releasing the products they are carrying, he said.
“The SOP will help customs officials of both countries to check duty evasion and expedite unloading of imported goods at the land ports,” Baruah said.
Other issues to be taken up include a review of the reopening of border haats. India and Bangladesh had decided to set up the haats along their international border in the northeast to boost local business and trade between the two neighbours.
Two border haats are expected to be functional by June, as part of a pilot project to revive this historic trade tie between Meghalaya and Bangladesh.
These markets would operate within 1.5 km radius of both sides of the border under close supervision of the border guards and customs officials of both the countries.
The commodities to be traded here would include locally produced agriculture and horticulture products, spices, minor forest products excluding timber, fresh and dry fish, dairy, fishery and poultry products, products of cottage industries, wooden furniture and cane products, handloom and handicraft items besides materials useful for farmers.
These border haats, which came to a halt post-Partition, resumed after a few years but stopped again after the 1971 India-Pakistan war, which led to the creation of Bangladesh.
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Tags: baruah, border guards, cane products, customs officials, dry fish, duty evasion, goods vehicles, horticulture products, hossain, international border, land ports, meghalaya, minor forest, pilot project, poultry products, shillong, sop, sops, standard operating procedures, wooden furniture