The Nepal-India Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NICCI) has welcomed the revision to the India-Nepal Rail Services Agreement that took place on July 10, during which officials from both countries exchanged letters of exchange. The signing of letters of exchange has been hailed by NICCI, a bi-national association of Nepali merchants and industrialists doing business with India and the Indian business community doing business with Nepal.
According to NICCI’s press release, the train service agreement was not yet in line with the spirit of evolving international trade and regional accords such as SAFTA and BIMSTEC. According to the news release, NICCI was asking for a review of numerous accords in light of the changing circumstances.
For over ten years, NICCI has raised concerns in various forums such as the India-Nepal Secretary Level Inter-Governmental Committee (IGC), India-Nepal Joint Secretary Level Inter-Governmental Committee (IGC), and other bilateral mechanisms between Nepal and India about over three dozen issues related to commerce, transport, trade, and logistics.
“In this environment, it is a positive thing that the two nations have signed letters of exchange to make Nepal-India trade more relevant,” the press notice states. The change to Nepal and India’s railway service agreement is expected to boost trade and transportation between the two nations, as well as make Nepal’s trade with third-world countries considerably easier.
According to the NICCI press release, because transportation costs will be lower, Nepali products will be more cost-competitive, and imported goods will be less expensive, resulting in long-term mutual benefits for the two countries.