BANGLADESH: The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council approved 10 rail development projects worth a total of 19·9bn taka on September 9. The government is to provide 12·6bn taka, with the rest coming from international aid.

Rolling stock procurement will include 10 broad gauge diesel-electric locomotives at a cost of US$32m, 125 passenger coaches worth US$54m, 50 metre-gauge flat wagons, 180 oil tanks and six broad and five metre-gauge brake vans. Infrastructure plans include reinstatement of 85 km of broad gauge railway between Kalukhali and Bhatiapara which was abandoned in 1997, and building flyovers at Jurain and Malibagh in Dhaka using Indian funding.

Other plans include building 55 km of new line from Kashiani to Gopalganj and Tungipara at a cost of 110bn taka. Discussions are underway with China for the development of road and rail connections through Myanmar.