Modern ICCP along border to promote trade

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Agartala, May 30 (ANI): To facilitate trade and economy and for trans-border passengers, India is building six integrated customs check posts (ICCP) along its border with Bangladesh, Pakistan and Nepal, said A.E. Ahmed, secretary (Border Management) in the Home Ministry during his visit to the state recently.

The six ICCPs are part of a total 13 ICCPs to be set up along the various bordering areas at a cost of Rs.6.35 billion.

"These ICCPs shall not only act as land ports for export-import but shall also operate as entry and exit points for trans-border passengers visiting to and fro the neighbouring countries,' Ahmed, told reporters during his visit to the Akhaura immigration centre cum land port.

Ahmed said that in the first phase, six ICCPs would be set up at Akhaurah (in Tripura), Dawki (in Meghalaya) and Karimganj (in Assam) - all along the border with Bangladesh, Raxaul and Jogbani (in Bihar) along the border with Nepal and Attari (in Punjab) along the border with Pakistan.

Adding on it he said that these ICCP will have all modern facilities with dedicated passenger and cargo terminals, adequate customs and immigration facilities, scanning equipment, weigh bridge, security and, health and quarantine facilities and banks which will help traders and passengers to ship their consignments speedily and thus improve the trade potential.

The initiative has been welcome by different business and trade unions in Tripura.

The president of the Tripura Chamber and Commerce, M L Debnath, said: "This new initiative of improving the facilities at the ICCP shall boast the greater economic integration can make an effective contribution to eliminating poverty from the region as the Northeast has a long international border."

Debnath added that at present the volume of trade between India and Bangladesh through Tripura is around three billion but it shall rise up sever by folds in coming days with the traders on both sides pressing their respective governments for more open economy and for better trade relations.

Ahmed imformed that Work for construction of ICPs at Attari, Raxaul, Jogbani and Akhaurah has begun and work for the remaining posts would be taken up soon.

Welcoming the initiative Manish Biswas, secretary, Agartala Exporter Importer Association said, "The decision of the modern ICCP with the latest equipments shall not only boost trade but also improve the relations between neighboring countries and thus also promote peace."

The setting up of ICPs along India's international border is a major initiative which the centre has undertaken as part of a scheme envisaged during the 11th Five Year Plan (2007-12) and a Land Port Authority of India has been established to supervise the construction works and maintenance of these ICCPs. (ANI)

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