India-B’desh cross-border oil pipeline to open on March 18

Bangladesh’s Foreign Minister A.K. Abdul Momenon has said that Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and her Indian counterpart Narendra Modi would jointly open the maiden cross-border oil pipeline on March 18 for diesel transportation to Bangladesh.

“The good news is India will send us diesel… the (Oil) pipeline has been completed, ” he confirmed to media on Thursday night, adding that the two premiers will inaugurate the pipeline on March 18 through video conferencing.

According to Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation (BPC) officials, India would export diesel through the 130-km India-Bangladesh Friendship Pipeline (IBFPL), built at a cost of around Rs 3.46 billion drawn from the Indian line of credit (LoC).

The pipeline stretches 125-km inside Bangladesh territory and 5-km inside India.

The two premiers attended the ground-breaking ceremony for the IBFPL in September 2018 through video conferencing.

Bangladesh so far used to import diesel from India through railway carriages.

Momen’s announcement came a week after he held talks with India’s External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar in New Delhi on the sidelines of the G20 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting last week. Momen said that India gave “high respect” to Bangladesh delegation throughout the G20 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting reflecting the “excellent” Dhaka-Delhi bilateral relations