The minister said that he was hopeful that the issues will be resolved during Sheikh Hasina’s India visit. Over the years, India has supported the implementation of a number of projects in Bangladesh on line of credit terms.
Bangladesh’s planning minister M A Mannan blamed the slow implementation of Bangladeshi projects under the line of credit (LoC) supported by India on Indian bureaucrats.
Mannan was speaking to journalists at the Development Journalists Forum of Bangladesh,
He said that Indian bureaucratic tangles slowed down the implementation of the Bangladeshi projects supported by New Delhi.
“The LoC is a bilateral loan. It is bureaucracy-based. Our bureaucracy claims that the Indian bureaucracy is the main reason behind the delay,” he said. “The Indian side says Bangladesh’s bureaucracy is the factor.”
“But, so far I know that the Indian bureaucratic tangles are slowing down the projects,” he added, hoping that the issues would be sorted out following Bangladesh prime minister Sheikh Hasina visit to India, currently under way.
“We are hopeful of resolving the problems in implementing the LoC-supported projects in Bangladesh after the Prime Minister’s India visit.”
Notably, the Bangladesh planning minister’s remarks coincide with agreements between the two countries on further cooperation, especially in the energy and transportation sectors. India and Bangladesh, on Wednesday arrived at an agreement to enhance the sub-regional connectivity in the energy sector by connecting the power grids of the two countries synchronously.
The Bangladesh side also welcomed the gesture of India for providing 20 broad-gauge diesel locomotives on grant.
Indian support for infrastructure
India has supported the implementation of a number of projects in Bangladesh on line of credit terms over the years. A number of projects have to do with transport infrastructure. For example, the induction of a fleet of busses with support from India has helped improve transport in the country and also helped reduce pollution in the capital city, Dhaka. This project, implemented since 2011 is a visible symbol of Indian partnership with Bangladesh following the Bangladesh Road Transport Corporation (BRTC) seeking Indian help for fleet expansion. A Government of India supported Line of Credit (LOC) of USD 862 million paved the way for import of 290 Ashok Leyland buses from India.
Likewise, the deployment of broad gauge diesel electric locomotives with support from India has also provided opportunities of safe, speedy and economical journey to train travellers in the country. A Government of India-supported Line of Credit (LOC) of USD 862 million extended to Bangladesh helped finance procurement of 10 units of broad gauge diesel electric locomotives from Indian Railways’ RITES Ltd.
Prior to this too, Indian Railways had exported 10 metre gauge locomotives from its Diesel Locomotive Works (DLW) to Bangladesh in 1996. Over the years, Indian Railways have also exported broad gauge locomotives and railway passenger coaches.
The construction of two rail bridges along the Dhaka‐Chittagong corridor with support from India are also considered landmarks of India-Bangladesh cooperation.