First trial container ship from Kolkata Port to Agartala via Chattogram port, Bangladesh carrying TMT Steel Bars flags off by Union Minister Mansukh Mandaviya on Thursday.
After reaching Chattogram, the consignments will move to Agartala on Bangladeshi trucks, the Ministry of Shipping said in the statement.
With this move, India aims to reduce its dependency on Siliguri Corridor to connect North Eastern states and this will provide an alternative sea route via Bangladesh.
The ship has been launched under the Agreement on the use of Chattogram and Mongla Ports for the movement of India’s transit cargo through Bangladesh.
The container ship was Digitally flagged off by Shipping Minister Mansukh Mandaviya on Thursday.
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Union Minister Mandaviya termed this as a “Historical day in Maritime relations of India and Bangladesh.”
“It will be a new chapter in India-Bangladesh maritime relations,” he added.
“With the commencement of first trial movement of containers from Kolkata to Agartala via Chattogram today, India and Bangladesh took another significant step towards further enhancing connectivity and economic cooperation,” External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said.
It will reduce distance and time taken in transportation of goods for India and is a win-win for both the economies, the statement said, adding job creation, investment in the logistical sector, enhanced business services and revenue generation are advantages that will accrue to Bangladesh.
India and Bangladesh have enhanced cooperation in shipping and inland water trade in the recent years.