BIMSTEC Summit 2022: PM Modi pledges USD 1 million to BIMSTEC, BIMSTEC Charter adopted; Know BIMSTEC Member Countries, Purpose & Key Agenda

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BIMSTEC 2022: India will provide the BIMSTEC secretariat USD 1 million to increase its operational budget, announced PM Narendra Modi at 5th BIMSTEC Summit on March 30, 2022. He urged that it is important to strengthen the capacity of BIMSTEC secretariat and suggested the Secretary-General create a roadmap for the same.

PM Modi said that the time has come to make the Bay of Bengal the bridge of connectivity, prosperity and security. He called on BIMSTEC nations to dedicate themselves to working with new enthusiasm to achieve the goals they achieved together in 1997.

The BIMSTEC Summit 2022 is being hosted in a hybrid mode by Sri Lanka, the current chair of BIMSTEC. Sri Lankan President is chairing the 5th BIMSTEC Summit with the virtual participation of leaders of Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal and Thailand. Myanmar Foreign Minister is representing the nation at the summit. 

The BIMSTEC Senior Officials (SOM) meeting had taken place on March 28, followed by meetings of the BIMSTEC Foreign Ministers on March 29 to prepare for the summit. 

BIMSTEC Summit 2022: Key Topic of Deliberations

The main topic of deliberations during the BIMSTEC Summit 2022:

-COVID-19 pandemic related challenges.

-Uncertainties within the international system.

– Progress of BIMSTEC as a regional group.

-Establishment of basic institutional structures and mechanisms of the group.

BIMSTEC scholarship program, Legal Treaty

Indian PM Narendra Modi highlighted, “We are working on extending and expanding the scope of the BIMSTEC scholarship program offered by the Nalanda International University. We are also signing a treaty on mutual legal assistance on criminal matters.”

BIMSTEC Charter

PM Modi added saying that the recent developments in Europe have raised questions about the stability of the international order. “In this context, it has become a greater priority to have regional cooperation. Today we are adopting BIMSTEC charter to develop institution architecture for our group,” he said.

Bhutan PM thanks PM Modi for COVID-19 vaccines

Bhutan PM Dr. Lotay Tshering thanked PM Modi at the 5th BIMSTEC Summit saying, “I could like to thank PM Modi for sharing COVID19 vaccines with us, it provided the much needed protection from COVID19. More than 90% of our citizens are vaccinated, protection of everyone is still our priority.”

BIMSTEC: FAQs

What is BIMSTEC?

The ‘Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC)’ is a regional multilateral organisation. 

Who are members of BIMSTEC?

BIMSTEC members are seven countries that lie in the littoral and adjacent areas of the Bay of Bengal. The BIMSTEC member nations include Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Myanmar and Thailand.

When was first BIMSTEC summit held?

The first BIMSTEC Summit was held on July 31, 2004. The grouping then got its name BIMSTEC or the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation.

Where is the headquarters of BIMSTEC?

The BIMSTEC headquarters are in Dhaka, Bangladesh. 

Who is the founder of BIMSTEC?

BIMSTEC was initially formed with four member states- Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka and Thailand on June 6, 1997. BIMSTEC was then called BIST-EC (Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka, and Thailand Economic Cooperation). It was renamed BIMST-EC in December 1997, following the inclusion of Myanmar.

When did Nepal join BIMSTEC?

Nepal became an observer state in 1998 and became full-time member of the bloc along with Bhutan in February 2004. 

What is the main purpose of BIMSTEC?

BIMSTEC main purpose is to accelerate economic growth and social progress and collaboration in the sub-region through joint initiatives.

The 15 priority areas of cooperation for BIMSTEC include trade and investment, energy, tourism, transport and communication, public health, counter-terrorism and transnational crime, environment and disaster management, technology, fisheries, agriculture, poverty alleviation, cultural cooperation, people-to-people Contact and Climate Change and Blue Economy.





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