Foreign Ministry will not propose extension of the Asian Highway (AH) signing deadline, saying that tabling such a proposal is contrary to rules of the treaty.
It also suggested that the Economic Relations Division (ERD) should be given responsibility to deal with any further development on the AH treaty in future, sources said.
The opinions have been sent to the cabinet division early this month after the foreign ministry was asked to pursue the AH authority - for extending the deadline.
Such a stance eventually buried the last chance for Bangladesh to join the multinational pact as per the December 31 deadline, sources added.
The United Nations Economic and Social Council for Asia and Pacific (UNESCAP), which is sponsoring the multinational pact of some 140,000km roads in 32 Asian countries, set the deadline for Dhaka.
Examining the AH rules and regulations, the foreign ministry letter containing the opinions said there is no scope for Dhaka to propose extension of the deadline.
"Bangladesh is not a party to the treaty. Only signatory countries of the AH are capable of brining any proposal for amendment," the letter said.
However, Dhaka can sign the intergovernmental agreement on the AH network at any time by 'accession' of article 5.2-C, the letter added.
According to a communication ministry official 'accession' suggests that Bangladesh will need support from a member country if it wishes to join the AH network at a later date.
Dhaka expressed unwillingness to join the AH following its reservation on two proposed international routes which run through the country.
It wanted a proposed sub-regional route to be upgraded to international route as precondition of recognising the AH treaty, said the official.
The proposed AH-1 international route that starts in Tokyo reaches Sylhet through Tamabil. It touches Kanchpur in Dhaka before crossing Benapole in Jessore to Bongaon in Kolkata. The route eventually ends at Kapikule, a border point between Turkey and Bulgaria.
The other proposed international route - AH-2 - starts at Denpasar in Indonesia and enters into Bangladesh through Tamabil. It ends in the country at Banglabandha via Dhaka to reach Shiliguri in India. Tanggu in China is the last point of the route.
The AH-41 that has been proposed as the regional route starts in border of Myanmar and reaches in Bangladesh through Teknaf. It runs through Cox's Bazar, Chittagong, Dhaka and Jessore before ending in Khulna.