Kathmandu, Oct. 6: Tatopani border point between Nepal and China, which had remained closed for three months, has reopened from Monday.
Chief Customs Officer at the Tatopani Customs Office Lal Bahadur Khatri said that six Chinese containers carrying clothes and raw materials entered Nepal this morning.
“Goods in Khasa area were dropped by the Chinese customs agents at the Miteri Bridge and the Nepali workers loaded the goods in 12 containers after the Chinese containers unloaded them,” he said.
Officials of Nepal and China had last week agreed to reopen the Tatopani checkpoint from October 5.
Khatri said that the closed Tatopani checkpoint was reopened only for import.
According to him, only around 10 Chinese containers would enter Nepal on a daily basis under the present arrangement.
“However, we are planning to use the premises of old Tatopani Customs Office for unloading goods from the Chinese containers aiming to bring more containers stuck in Khasa area to the Nepali side,” he told The Rising Nepal.
Currently, around 29 workers, including drivers, are mobilised for loading goods into the Nepali containers.
He said that around 25 workers were in ready position for loading the goods dropped by the Chinese containers.
“Around 15-20 Chinese containers would enter Nepal on a daily basis after managing a separate yard for loading and unloading goods. The Chinese side has agreed to send more containers after the management of a separate yard and workers,” Khatri said.
According to him, all 54 workers, including the drivers, are staying in quarantine at different hotels separately to be safe from COVID-19.
“We will disinfect the vehicles at the customs and keep the drivers and assistants who cross Nepal-China border in quarantine,” he said.
Around 400 Chinese containers are in Khasa at present, he said, adding that all stranded containers are expected to arrive in Nepal within a month.
Khatri said that they would send the loaded containers to Kathmandu after completing the medical protocol and customs clearance.