SAARC nations considering multi-modal transport system: Govt

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New Delhi, Feb 27 (UNI) SAARC nations are considering the proposal of starting an integrated multimodal transport system in the region, External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee told the Lok Sabha today In a written reply, he said the transport system, comprising road, rail and sea links, would not be realised unless physical infrastructure and matters relating to customs clearance and other facilitation measures were comprehensively addressed.

''Discussions in this regard were held during the first SAARC Transport Minister's meeting in August... The meeting recommended several rail and sea links and regional road corridors,'' he added.

Mr Mukherjee said India has also circulated a Draft Regional Motor Vehicle Agreement for the consideration of the member states.

''Member states would be examining the viability of the identified pilot projects for implementation during the third meeting of the Inter-governmental Group on Transport scheduled to be held in Sri Lanka in March-April--2008,'' he added.

The projects recommended by the SAARC Transport Minister's meeting are Linkage from Phuntsholing to Hashimara, Kathmandu-Birgunj-Kolkata/Haldia and Agartala-Akhaura-Chittagong.

UNI NR MSJ AS1534

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