SILIGURI/ PHUENTSHOLLING: To ensure seamless trade of Bhutan with India and other third parties, India is further widening its door for Bhutan.
Development and upgradation of new Indo-Bhutan cross border trade routes are expected to give a quantum jump to the commercial strata of economically backward Himalayan foothills region in Northern West Bengal.
According to senior officials in Bhutan Ministry of Economic Affairs, Indian Commerce Ministry has informed Bhutan that planned LCS at Loksan and Nagrakata are being upgraded to permanent instead of keeping them seasonal. In addition, other permanent LCS will be established at places including Birpara, Rangapani, Upper Khogla in Bengal adjoining foothills. This decision follows an agreement of two countries to open up 16 other new trade routes.
“The development will come as a boon for overall commercial activity of the region,” said CII North Bengal chapter Chairman Rajib Lochan.
“Open international border between the two Country facilitates opportunity for lakhs of Indians to get directly or indirectly involved into Bhutan’s trade activities. Hence, growth in cross border trade will boost the number of these beneficiaries here,” said Kamal Agarwal, a veteran trader operating predominantly in Indo-Bhutan border markets.