Ending dependance on India, Nepal gets access to all Chinese ports

Kathmandu, Sep 8: Nepal has been given access to Chinese ports for trade with China. The decision was finalised between the two countries and this would mean that Nepal's dependancy on Indian ports for trade would come down.

Following a marathon meeting, officials of the two countries signed the protocol. The final shape was given to the treaty signed by Nepal Prime Minister, K P Oil when he visited China in March 2016, following an economic blockade by India.

An official release said the formalisation of the agreement allows the transit of goods from other countries to Nepal via all of China's ports, including Tianjin, Shenzhen, Lianygang, Zhanziang and dryports that include Lhanzin, Lhasa and Shigatse.

Overland trade to and from Nepal is now routed mainly through Kolkata which takes up to three months, officials said. New Delhi has also opened the southern port at Vishakhapatnam for Nepali trade.

Traders say that the plan to connect the country with China could face problems due to lack of proper roads and customs infrastructure on the Nepalese side of the border. The nearest Chinese port is also located more than 2,600 kilometres from its border.

(With inputs from Reuters)

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