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India, Bangladesh MoU to set up Border Haats

The Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has given its ex-post-facto approval for the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Bangladesh for (i) MoU and Mode of Operation of Border Haats signed on 23.10.2010 with Bangladesh for setting up Border Haats on India-Bangladesh Border, (ii) addendum to the MoU signed on 15.5.2012; (iii) to establish new Border Haats after identification of suitable locations in consultation with Government of Bangladesh and concerned State Governments and (iv) to modify/revise the terms and condition of the above MoU/Addendum in consultation with relevant State Governments/Central Government agencies and Government of Bangladesh.

The Border Haats aim at promoting the well-being of the people dwelling in remote areas across the borders of two countries, by establishing traditional system of marketing the local produce thorough local markets in local currency and/or barter basis. Though not significant as a percentage of bilateral trade, these measures help to improve economic well-being of marginalised sections of society.

Background

During the visit of Bangladesh Prime Minister to India on 10-13 January, 2010, it was agreed that Border Haats shall be established on a pilot basis at selected areas, including on the Meghalaya border, to allow trade in specified products and in accordance with the regulations agreed and notified by both Governments.

In order to implement the same,an MoU and the Mode of operation of Border Haats across the border between Bangladesh and lndia was signed on 23rd October, 2010, Subsequently, an Addendum to Mode of operation of Border Haats across the Border between Bangladesh and India was also signed on 15th May, 2012.

The following Border Haats are already operational:

1. Kalaichar (Meghalaya-Bangladesh border)
2. Balat (Meghalaya-Bangladesh border)
3. Kamlasagar (Tripura-Bangladesh border)
4. Srinagar (Tripura-Bangladesh border)

In addition, both the Government agreed to further establish two Border Haats in Tripura and four Border Haats in Meghalaya on the Bangladesh border.

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