Protocol on Inland Water Transit and Trade (PIWTT)

Protocol on Inland Water Transit and Trade (PIWTT)


  • Union Minister of Ports, Shipping & Waterways and AYUSH, received the maiden voyage  of food-grains from Patna to Pandu via Bangladesh in Guwahati.

Key Details

  • The vessel started its sail from Patna on National Waterway-1 (river Ganga) and passed through Bhagalpur, Manihari, Sahibganj, Farakka, Tribeni, Kolkata, Haldia, Hemnagar; Indo Bangladesh Protocol (IBP) route through Khulna, Narayanganj, Sirajganj, Chilmari and National Waterway-2 through Dhubri, and Jogighopa covering a distance of 2,350 km.

    Protocol on Inland Water Transit and Trade (PIWTT)
    Source: Financial Express
  • The IWAI is also planning to run a regular scheduled service on these routes.
  • The protocol on Inland water transit and Trade (PIWTT) between India & Bangladesh will be optimally beneficial when we can unlock the value from the cargo trade in the region.
  • To improve the navigability, two stretches of IBP routes, i.e., Sirajganj-Daikhowa and Ashuganj-Zakiganj are also being developed.
  • In line with the Act East” policy of Prime Minister, the Ministry of Ports, Shipping & Waterways (MoPSW), has taken up several infrastructure projects on
    • National Waterways-1,
    • Indo-Bangladesh Protocol route, and
    • NW2, through the Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI).
    • These steps will improve the connectivity with North Eastern Region (NER) through waterways.
    • The Government has undertaken the ambitious Jal Marg Vikas Project (JMVP)


  • This historic feat will usher a new era of growth for all the states of Northeast India.
  • The waterways will cut through the landlocked access which has been crippling development in the region for long.
  • The waterways not only remove this geographical hindrance on the road of progress in the region but also provides an economical, swift and convenient transportation for the businesses and people of the region.

About Protocol on Inland Water Transit and Trade

  • The trade between India and Bangladesh will improve with the Indo-Bangladesh Protocol on Inland Water Transit and Trade. Besides, it will also promote better connectivity with other neighbouring countries.
  • The Indo-Bangladesh protocol route will use NW-1 as well as NW-2 on the Indian side.
  • This waterway will connect land locked countries such as Bhutan, Nepal and Myanmar to smoothen trade in the coming days. In Myanmar, Sittwe Port has been developed for greater connectivity for goods as well as cargo movement.
  • This Protocol, which was first signed in the year 1972 (immediately after the independence of Bangladesh), is a reflection of friendship and shared history between the two nations.
  • It was last renewed in the year 2015 for a period of five years with a provision for its automatic renewal for a further duration of five years providing long term assurance to various stakeholders.

Source: PIB

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