Experts discuss Birgunj dry port

Himalayan News Service

Kathmandu, May 8:

Export-import entrepreneurs speaking at a seminar on ‘Nepalese Trade Through ICD: Challenges and Opportunities’, organised in Kolkata yesterday, stressed on the need to make Birgunj dry port operation safe, quick and less costly to facilitate transit transportation of export and import cargo to reap maximum benefits.

The seminar was organised to highlight the ICD related problems and find timely solutions to expedite the cargo transport through the dry port.

A K Chanda, chairman of Kolkata Port Trust, said that the transportation of goods through Birgunj ICD would also bring positive impact to the Kolkata port. “However, private sectors should play a key role to reap more benefits from the port,” he added.

Subrato Basu, chief commissioner of customs, said that the main challenges of the developing nations are not the lack of infrastructure but the minimum use of it. “The problem of Nepal is also the least use of its transit facility,” he added.

Krishna Hari Banskota, director general at the department of customs, said that the maximum utilisation of the Birgunj dry port is necessary to promote export and import.

“Government has spent a huge amount for the construction of dry port but it is not used to its capacity,” said Govind Prasad Kusum, Royal Nepal Consulate General.

“The frequency of movement of containers by rail at present is thrice a week, which is not considered sufficient for the smooth operation of the ICD,” said Surya B Manandhar, president, Nepal Intermodal Transport Development Board (NITDB).

“The frequency of block train services has to be increased to assure the potential ICD users of the timely transportation,” he added.