The World Bank has been working to streamline processes related to trade and commerce in Nepal in order to make shipping goods into or out of the developing nation easier and less costly.
Nepalese goods are in increasing demand, but exporting them is a complicated process plagued by red tape and treacherous geography. In order to be shipped internationally, goods must first make the cumbersome trip to the port of Kolkata in neighboring India; a journey which currently takes as long as 10-20 days.
World Bank is working to shorten that time by rebuilding a long stretch of dangerous road; the only route through the mountains suitable for large trucks. Covered in potholes, the narrow, unpaved lanes hugging the mountainside actually comprise a highway to and from the capital, but traffic often moves at a snail’s pace. A newly built road will allow traffic to move more quickly, decrease car accidents, and reduce damage to trucks due to poor road conditions.
World Bank is also working to reduce duplicate bureaucratic processes on both sides of the border that delay drivers on the way to Kolkata. By reducing the number of departments who must each certify exports before they can leave Nepal and by building a computer network connected to checkpoints in both countries to more easily share customs documentation, travel delays will be greatly reduced.
– Jordan N. Hunt
Source: World Bank
Photo: California Agriculture