Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal to speed up Motor Vehicles Agreement

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The BBIN-MVA was signed in June 2015 to regulate the movement of passenger, personnel and goods among the four countries.

Mohammad Sarwar Mahmood, director general (South Asia) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, yesterday led the Bangladesh delegation at a meeting in New Delhi where the officials decided to speed up efforts to give effect to the agreement, our New Delhi correspondent reports.

This was the first meeting of the group since their meeting in Bengaluru in January 2018 when the two protocols were discussed, the Indian External Affairs Ministry said in a statement.

Representatives of Bhutan participated in the meeting in the capacity of an observer as decided by the government of Bhutan earlier.

The officials at yesterday’s meeting recalled the commitments made at the highest political level for implementation of the BBIN MVA and the importance of trade, economic cooperation and people-to-people contact through enhanced regional connectivity, including facilitation of regional cross-border road transport.

The meeting also discussed in detail various aspects of the draft protocol for movement of cargo vehicles, discussing the existing draft text jointly for the first time.

In this regard, the delegations of Bangladesh, India and Nepal reaffirmed their understanding that the BBIN MVA safeguards the rights and obligations of all parties under other international agreements and bilateral agreements within the group, including those relating to landlocked countries.

The officials discussed a draft enabling MoU to be signed by Bangladesh, India and Nepal for implementation of the BBIN MVA, bearing in mind the consent provided by the government of Bhutan for the entry into force of the MVA among Bangladesh, India and Nepal without obligation to Bhutan, pending the completion by Bhutan of its internal procedures for ratification of the BBIN MVA.

The delegations of Bangladesh, India and Nepal agreed to consider expediting the finalisation of this MoU, expressing gratitude to Bhutan for offering its consent in this regard, the statement said.