The first energy pipeline between India and Bangladesh will be opened on Saturday (March 18) via video conference between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Bangladeshi counterpart, Sheikh Hasina.
This pipeline, which is expected to cost Rs 377 crore, will be the first cross-border pipeline between the two nations. The sum of the costs includes the Rs 285 crore spent on paving the section on the Bangladeshi side, as reported by PTI.
“Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Prime Minister of Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina will inaugurate the India-Bangladesh friendship pipeline on March 18 at 1700 hours (IST) via video-conference,” the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said in a statement on Friday.
“This is the first cross border energy pipeline between India and Bangladesh, built at an estimated cost of INR 377 crore, of which the Bangladesh portion of the pipeline built at a cost of approximately Rs 285 crore, has been borne by the government of India under grant assistance,” it said in a statement.
According to the MEA, the pipeline has the ability to move 1 million MMTPA of high-speed diesel. It would initially provide high-speed diesel to seven districts in northern Bangladesh.
“The operation of India-Bangladesh Friendship Pipeline will put in place a sustainable, reliable, cost-effective and environment-friendly mode of transporting HSD from India to Bangladesh and will further enhance cooperation in energy security between the two countries,” the MEA said.
This most recent endeavour is in keeping with India’s Neighbourhood First Policy, which has been a cornerstone of its foreign policy during this time.
Premier Sheikh Hasina visited India in September as part of a state visit and spoke with PM Modi on a one-on-one basis. The strong bilateral connections, founded on long-standing historical and brotherly ties and a commitment to democracy and pluralism, were commended by both leaders for their great state.
In terms of funds disbursed during the previous financial year, MEA reports that India overtook China as Bangladesh’s leading partner in development cooperation. India has provided Bangladesh with concessional loans of approximately USD 10 billion, including through three of its largest bilateral lines of credit.
(With inputs from agencies)