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Nepal-India trade, transit and logistic issues discussed

Nepal-India Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NICCI) organised a interaction session with the Consulate General of Nepal to India Eshor Raj Poudel on March 24 at the NICCI secretariat. The session chaired by the Vice-President Sunil KC was attended by R B Rauniar, Secretary General and Cnvener of the Trade and Transit Committee at NICCI, Prakash Singh Karki, Chairperson of the Road and Transit Committee at FNCCI and Naresh Agrawal, Vice President of Nepal Freight Forwarders Association.

Rauniar explained point-wise how the business community can overcome the issues they have been facing with amicable solutions that will help keep the cost of doing business low and make Nepali consignment hassle-free and cost-effective in the international market. He handed over the documentation of the segregated issues that need to be seen by the Consulate General of Nepal for lobbying with concerned government and private agencies in Nepal and India.

The meeting suggested the expansion of jurisdiction of Nepali Consulate Office to work for Bihar and Uttar Pradesh. It is now confined to West Bengal only. It was also suggested that Nepal-bound cargo be allowed to ferry to any customs point at India-Nepal border via rail, thereby allowing other private sector rail operators to move Nepal bound cargo to other entry and exit customs points listed in the treaty.

Explaining the disparity between Nepal-India Transit Treaty and Nepal-India Rail Service Agreement in the case of documents requirements, he said rail moving cargo require submission of copy documents only for the purpose of Indian custom clearance as per RSA; whereas road movement cargo are asked to submit original documents for Indian Custom Clearance, even though it is not made mandatory to submit original documents as per Article 3 of the memorandum of protocol of the Nepal-India Transit Treaty.

The meeting also discussed that Nepal has implemented ASYCUDA World in all major customs points and the Government of India uses ICEGATE at its customs points for the same reason. It was suggested that these two systems should be integrated as the EDI connection would help in better risk management as well as CTD automation and document harmonisation to make transactions transparent and help simplify procedures at the port in Kolkata.

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