Guwahati, Sept 25: The North East Federation on International Trade (NEFIT), trade body comprising exporters and importers of the region, is organising the BIBN (Bangladesh-India-Bhutan-Nepal) Friendship International Car Rally 2023 to boost age-old trade linkages and cultural ties with neighbouring countries.
The car rally will be flagged off from Nehru Stadium here at 7am on September 28, 2023. The rally will subsequently move via Gelephu-Dadgari (India-Bhutan border) to Gelephu (Bhutan), Thimphu (Bhutan), Phuentsholing-Jaigaon (India-Bhutan border), Siliguri, Panitanki-Kakarvitta (India-Nepal border), Mithila (Nepal) and Kathmandu (Nepal).
Thereafter, it will return to Mithila (Nepal) and then to Kakarvitta-Panitanki (India-Nepal border), Siliguri, Tura, Dalu-Nakugaon (India-Bangladesh border), Dhaka (Bangladesh), Sylhet (Bangladesh), Tamabil-Dawki (India-Bangladesh border) and back to Guwahati for the flag-down on October 9, 2023.
“The car rally will reaffirm the physical and emotional connectivity that binds the neighbouring countries. We want to make a key distinction that this car rally is not a motor sport event, but a self-driven expedition to explore the overland trade connectivity and foster cultural ties and people-to-people contact among the neighbouring countries, which in the near future may transform into robust economic partnership and investment opportunities,” NEFIT general secretary Mrinal Hatkhowa said.
“We believe that such confidence-building measures will open up new dimensions of overland trade and dispel many doubts of prospective traders. This initiative will also serve to identify trade barriers and infrastructure bottlenecks, and help in formulating policies to mitigate them,” he said.
Notably, the North East Council (NEC) has extended support to the event organised by NEFIT.
“We express our gratitude to the Ministry of External Affairs; Ministry of Home Affairs; Ministry of Road and Transport and Highways and the department of customs for providing us the necessary permissions and clearance for the event,” the NEFIT official said.