Dechen Dolkar 

Bhutan is exploring possibilities of exporting electricity to Bangladesh. The two countries are also exploring trading opportunities in agricultural products, tourism, education, and the internet.

Recently, the two governments signed an agreement on the movement of traffic in transit between Bhutan and Bangladesh. The agreement provides Bhutan with greater connectivity with transit facilities for the movement of goods using multi-model transport arrangements.

The ambassador of Bangladesh to Bhutan, Shib Nath Roy, said that connectivity is an essential part of the trade.

The ambassador said that now Bhutan’s vehicles and cargo will have the opportunity to enter Bangladesh easily and use the three seaports of Mongla, Payra, and Chattogram in Bangladesh for trade.

“We are keen to develop trade relationships with Bhutan in many areas,” the ambassador said.

He said that Bangladesh is also very keen on importing surplus electricity from Bhutan in the summer.

He said that electricity demand increases in summer in Bangladesh.

Bangladesh generates around 25,000MW of electricity and has ensured 100 percent electrification for her people.

The ambassador said that due to increased industrialisation and economic activities, the energy demand is increasing by the day in Bangladesh.

He said that Bangladesh’s energy demands would grow.

Bangladesh plans to import around 1,500MW of electricity from Bhutan initially.

The ambassador said that Bangladesh is bilateral and trilateral options, adding that the discussion between Bhutan and Bangladesh is almost finalised. The bilateral agreement and memorandum of understanding on electricity trading are expected to be signed in a few months’ time between the two governments.

Trilateral discussion among Bhutan, Bangladesh, and India, is underway.

Shib Nath Roy said that during the state visit of Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to India recently, the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, agreed to facilitate the import of electricity to Bangladesh through India.

Lyonpo Loknath Sharma said that discussions are underway. “We are hoping for a positive outcome.”