India and Bhutan also agreed that they will not allow each other’s territory to be used for interests inimical to the other
The Indian government on Monday announced that the country will exempt Bhutan from any ban or quantitative restrictions on export of items like milk powder, meat, edible oil and non-Basmati rice.
This step has been taken with a view to boosting trade ties with the neighbouring country.
India and Bhutan also agreed that they will not allow each other’s territory to be used for interests inimical to the other.
Earlier in the day, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone for the 600-MW Kholongchu hydro-electric project, a joint venture between India and Bhutan.
The foundation stone was laid by Modi electronically from the courtyard of Bhutan’s Parliament building after addressing a joint session.
Three hydro-electric projects totalling 1,416 MW (Chukha, Tala and Kurichu) are already operational. Three more projects [Punatsangchu I (1,200 MW), Punatsangchu II (1,020 MW) and Mangdechu (720 MW)] are under construction. They are scheduled to be commissioned in 2017-18.
In April, 2014, the two countries had signed a framework agreement on four more joint venture model hydro-electric projects (HEP) totalling 2,120 MW. Of these, pre-construction activities for the 600 MW Kholongchu HEP as a joint venture model project between Satluj Jal Vidyut Nigam (SJVN) and Druk Green Power Corporation (DGPC) will commence soon.
On the second day of his two-day visit, PM Modi also addressed the joint session of Bhutan's Parliament. He said, India is committed to good neighbourly relations and assured Bhutan that change in government will not alter the dynamics of Indo-Bhutan ties.
“India is committed to good relations with its neighbours and if India progresses, it will directly impact the development of its neighbours," the PM added.
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