India is keen to increase air connectivity between its northeastern states and Bangladesh.
Northeast India refers to the region adjoining the states of Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, Manipur, Nagaland, Mizoram, Tripura and Sikkim.
Many Indian investors are keen to invest in the growth of Bangladesh's tourism industry, and they are being encouraged and supported, Indian High Commissioner to Dhaka Pranay Verma said during a courtesy meeting with Civil Aviation and Tourism Minister Muhammad Faruk Khan at the Bangladesh Secretariat on Tuesday.
They discussed the possibility of introducing new air routes between the two neighbouring countries to boost tourism, with a specific interest in connecting the northeastern states with Bangladesh by air, according to the high commissioner.
Increasing cooperation in civil aviation and the tourism industry would strengthen the friendship between the two countries, the minister said while talking to the reporters after the meeting.
India proposed some ideas for improving relations in these areas, and they will be considered.
He added that the discussion also included plans to enhance air connectivity between the two nations.
The minister revealed that Bangladesh and India will work together to organise a tourism fair to increase the number of visitors.
They discussed plans to strengthen cooperation in the tourism industry, particularly in attracting more Indian tourists to Bangladesh.
Both countries will host tourism fairs, and there were talks about making visa procedures easier for tourists travelling between them, Faruk said.
Verma highlighted the importance of collaboration in the aviation and tourism sectors for strengthening economic ties.
He mentioned ongoing efforts to improve the skills of Bangladeshi civil aviation officials, with 36 officers already trained in the fiscal year 2022-23, and further training planned for the future.
Responding to a query from reporters, he said: "We granted Indian visas to 1.6 million Bangladeshi citizens last year, and this number is increasing.
“We've improved our ability to issue visas promptly to Bangladeshis.”
The possibility of discussing visa on arrival for Bangladeshi nationals in India will be considered in the future, he said.