The union cabinet today approved the amendments requested by the pan Asian highway project transiting mooted by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific of the United Nations (UNESCAP) with two amendments.
The amendments pertain to the route of AH-2, and AH-48 defined in the list of Asian highway routes of the inter-governmental agreement on the Asian Highway network, for consideration by the working group on Asian Highways.
(i) Asian Highway 2 to include Phulbari between Banglabandha and Siliguri and defining of the route of AH-2 at this location as "… Banglabandha-Phulbari-Siliguri-Kakarbhitta…",
(ii) Asian Highway to provide link to Bhutan by extending the route from "Thimphu-Phuentsholing-Jaigaon-Hasimara-Jalpaigui-Phulbari" in place of "Phuentsholing - Border of India" and consequently connect with Asian Highway -2 at Phulbari in India.
By extending the Asian Highway 48 from Thimphu-Phuentsholing (Bhutan) to Jaigaon, Border Point in India, and giving connectivity to Asian highway 2 in India will provide connectivity of Asian Highway Route from Bhutan to India, as well as to both Bangladesh and Nepal.
This will help increase trade and tourism amongst Bhutan, Nepal, India and Bangladesh.