India-Bangladesh Trade Transactions in Rupee and Taka Strengthen Bilateral Relations

Bangladesh’s Minister for Information and Broadcasting, Hasan Mahmud, expressed that India and Bangladesh have entered “new dimensions” in their relations, as they have commenced trade transactions in their respective currencies, Rupee and Taka. In an exclusive interview with ANI, Mahmud highlighted the growing political, economic, and cultural ties between the two countries, attributing the strengthened relationship to the recent adoption of bilateral trade in Rupees and Takas.

In April of this year, Bangladesh and India reached an agreement to settle a portion of their trade transactions in local currencies, aiming to ease the burden on dollar reserves. This move came after months of discussions concerning the crisis of the dollar. However, it is important to note that not all bilateral trade will be conducted in Rupees and Takas.

Regarding the improvement of India-Bangladesh border connectivity, Minister Mahmud acknowledged that due to the extensive border shared by the two countries, some issues may arise. Nevertheless, he emphasized that both nations engage in dialogues to address and resolve such matters, as they have done with success in the past.

Minister Mahmud stressed the significance of cultural exchanges, stating that fostering a strong cultural relationship will further strengthen the ties between the people of Bangladesh and India. He expressed that the two countries have a robust relationship and are continuously working to enhance the bond between their citizens.

Recent times have witnessed significant advancements in bilateral ties between India and Bangladesh. Notably, the resolution of the longstanding land boundary dispute in a cordial manner in 2015 marked a milestone in their relationship. Additionally, India has been actively participating in numerous developmental projects in Bangladesh, financing infrastructure and connectivity initiatives through its Line of Credit, amounting to over eight billion dollars at a concessional rate.

Projects like the multimodal road-rail link between Agartala in India’s Tripura and Akhaura in Bangladesh have enhanced physical connectivity between the nations. Moreover, the reopening of an old rail link between Chilahati and Haldibari, regular train services between Kolkata and Dhaka, and improved bus connectivity from Dhaka to Shillong, Agartala, and Kolkata have further strengthened the ties.

India has also contributed a grant for the construction of the Padma Bridge, a crucial rail-road link connecting India to the north and south regions of Bangladesh. Additionally, waterways connectivity has witnessed positive developments, with several new routes activated, including a bridge across the Feni river facilitating the movement of goods and passengers from Tripura to Bangladesh.

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