Dhaka – India on Saturday announced a 5 billion-dollar credit line for Bangladesh to help implement development projects and defence purchases, according to officials.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi made the announcement at a press conference jointly with his Bangladeshi counterpart Sheikh Hasina after official talks in New Delhi.
The two leaders also witnessed signing of agreements and memorandum of understanding between the two countries after their official talks ended at Hyderabad House.
The deals include areas of defence, road and rail connectivity and civil nuclear cooperation.
Both Prime Ministers were affirmative in terms of relationship between Bangladesh and India.
They also expressed optimism over much-talk about Teesta water sharing deal, which was not on the agenda, to be signed during their tenure in office.
Modi said he was hopeful of an “early and acceptable solution” with the Bangladesh government.
Bangladesh expects India to go the extra mile to clinch the Teesta deal as its water is crucial for Bangladesh especially in the leanest period from December to March when the water flow often temporarily comes down to less than 1,000 cusecs from 5,000 cusecs.
Times of India reported 22 pacts in various key sectors, including a civil nuclear agreement and two memorandums of understanding (MoUs) on defence cooperation were signed between the two countries.
India has extended a credit line of $4.5 billion for implementation of projects in Bangladesh.
“We are happy to announce a concessional line of credit of $4.5 billion for investment in priority sectors in Bangladesh,” Modi said during a joint statement at Hyderabad House.
He also announced $500 million credit line for military budget in Bangladesh.
“India has always stood for the prosperity of Bangladesh, we are a long standing and trusted development partner of Bangladesh,” Modi said while touching upon the various investments assured to the country in the meet.
He said India wanted to build cooperation in new areas with Bangladesh “especially in some high-technology sectors which would include working in the fields of electronics, IT, cyber security, space explorations and civil nuclear energy”.
The two prime ministers jointly inaugurated via video link the new bus service between Kolkata and Dhaka via Khulna in Bangladesh.
They flagged off the Maitree Express, which will run between Kolkata and Khulna, while also restoring the defunct Radhikapur-Khulna passenger train service, which is set to resume in July 2017 after an interval of nearly 70 years.