BBIN Motor Vehicles Agreement Regains Momentum
What is the issue ?
- Bangladesh, India and Nepal have agreed on the text of the operating procedures for passenger vehicle movement in the sub-region under the Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal (BBIN) Motor Vehicles Agreement (MVA).
- The agreement was signed in June 2015, and will soon complete the internal approval processes for signing of the passenger protocol
- Bhutan is yet to ratify the agreement following which the pact will become operational.
What is BBIN ?
- For seamless flow of passenger and cargo traffic in the region, BBIN motor vehicles agreement (MVA) was signed by the transport ministers of the BBIN countries in Thimphu, Bhutan on 15 June 2015. However, Bhutan could not ratify it later.
- The agreement will permit the member states to ply their vehicles in each other's territory for transportation of cargo and passengers, including third country transport and personal vehicles.
- Each vehicle would require an electronic permit to enter another country's territory, and border security arrangement between nations' borders will also remain.
- Cargo vehicles will be able enter any of the four nations without the need for trans-shipment of goods from one country's truck to another's at the border.
- Under the system, cargo vehicles are tracked electronically, permits are issued online and sent electronically to all land ports.
- Vehicles are fitted with an electronic seal that alerts regulators every time the container door is opened.
Support from Asian Development Bank :
- The Asian Development Bank(ADB) has been providing technical, advisory, and financial support to the BBIN MVA initiative as part of its assistance to the South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation (SASEC) program.
Importance of the pact :
- Northeast India will benefit by having better connectivity with mainland India.
- India will gain direct access to Southeast Asia, a high growth oriented sub region of Asia.
- Better connectivity and seamless flow of goods and services translates to better relations with all countries involved.
- Massive savings can be acrued both in terms of cost and in terms of time.