Nathu La is one of the two open trading border posts between China and India; the others being Shipkila in Himachal Pradesh and Lipulekh (or Lipulech) in Nepal. Sealed by India after the 1962 Sino-Indian War, Nathu La was re-opened in 2006 following numerous bilateral trade agreements. The opening of the pass was expected to bolster the economy of the region and play a key role in the growing Sino-Indian trade, but that has not happened. Currently, agreements between the two nations limit trade across the pass to 29 types of goods from India and 15 from the Chinese side. The opening, however, shortens the travel distance to important Hindu and Buddhist pilgrimage sites in the region.
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