Pasakha Industrial Estate will get a second biggest dry port within the 12th plan. The government has earmarked a budget of Nu 1.7bn for the construction of the dry port.
Speaking to Business Bhutan, economic affairs minister, Loknath Sharma, said that the need for a dry port is felt as the country’s biggest industrial estate houses more than 30 heavy and medium industries. “It is necessary and we are committed to it within this plan,” said Lyonpo Loknath Sharma.
However, it is uncertain when the works on its construction will commence. Around 15 acres of land at Allay has been earmarked for the dry port construction. The government explored for grants although Asian Development Bank was also reportedly interested to fund through loan. The Indian government has committed Nu 4bn for trade support facility from which the ministry will use Nu 1.7bn for the dry port.
So far, all the raw materials and finished goods are shipped to and from the industrial estate through Phuentsholing’s Regional Revenue and Customs office. Having a dry port is expected to benefit the industries as the new double lane access road from Manglabari to Pasakha is nearing completion. It will also decongest the traffic at the newly constructed mini dryport in the core town.
Once the route is open for traffic and the dry port comes, the materials then need not have to route through Phuentsholing which is already encountering traffic congestion.
Also, with the new Land Customs Station in the offing, the dry port is expected to ease the industries in Pasakha.
The economic affairs ministry has already earmarked the budget with funding from Government of India under trade support facility. Economic affairs minister said that the Indian government has committed to fund the project. The government is also looking to facilitate such dry ports in Gelephu and Nganglam. The upcoming industrial parks require similar port to facilitate the industries in trade and transport goods in and out of the country.
Krishna Ghalley from Pasakha, P/ling