SASEC News

Compiled features on recent developments in regional cooperation and integration in the SASEC region.

Year:  

August 2017
BIMSTEC Seeks Stronger Ties and Cooperation

The 18th session of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) Senior Officials' Meeting and the 15th BIMSTEC Ministerial Meeting stressed the importance of cooperation in energy, technology, trade, and transport, through a revitalized, more integrated, and stronger BIMSTEC process. The Joint Statement underscored the need to finalize the BIMSTEC Free Trade Area Agreement.


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Tags:  BIMSTECNepalBangladeshRegional CooperationEnergyTechnologyTradeTransportFree Trade Agreement
 

June 2017
Forum Emphasizes Importance of Cooperation in Regional Initiatives

A forum in Kathmandu, Nepal explored actions that will allow landlocked countries to take advantage of being "land-linked". Mr. Bipul Chatterjee, Executive Director, CUTS International, underscored the importance of cooperation among the four countries to be able to move forward.


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Tags:  NepalRegional CooperationBangladeshBhutanIndiaInfrastructure
 

June 2017
Nepal-Bangladesh Youth Meet on Promoting Bilateral Trade

The Nepal-Bangladesh Youth Conference 2017 was held in Kathmandu, Nepal, to discuss possible ways to increase bilateral trade between Nepal and Bangladesh. The environment and the economic and business sectors were among the topics tackled at the conference.


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Tags:  BangladeshNepalBBINRegional CooperationTrade Facilitation
 

June 2017
India Proposes Regional Air Connectivity Scheme among BIMSTEC Countries

The Government of India has proposed application of its "Ude Desh ka Aam Naagrik" (UDAN) or "Common People of the Country can Fly" policy among member countries of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC). An enabling regional connectivity policy could help attract high value economic agents, business travelers, and tourists.


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Tags:  IndiaBIMSTECTransportConnectivityBhutanMyanmarRegional Cooperation
 

May 2017
ADB Blog: 6 Ways Asian Economic Cooperation is Changing the Region

Economic transformations have accelerated regional cooperation and integration in Asia. In this ADB blog post, Mr. Cuong Minh Nguyen, Principal Regional Integration Specialist, Southeast Asia Department, ADB, discusses six paradigm shifts that are reshaping economic prospects in Southeast Asia, South Asia, and other parts of the region. It also highlights the need for governments to work together to build a socially inclusive, environmentally friendly, and economically sustainable region.


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Tags:  ASEANSAARCTrade FacilitationTransportEnergyRegional Cooperation
 

May 2017
Building Stronger Cooperation with BIMSTEC

The Secretary General of Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) advised member countries to look at regional cooperation in a pragmatic way, with efforts to build regional cooperation focusing on achieving practical results, at the conference marking BIMSTEC’s 20th anniversary.


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Tags:  BIMSTECTrade FacilitationTransportConnectivityRegional Cooperation
 

May 2017
India, Bangladesh to Gradually Remove NTBs

Mr. Harsh Vardan Shringla, India's High Commissioner to Bangladesh reiterated India's commitment to remove non-tariff barriers (NTBs) through the standard-setting bodies of India and Bangladesh. The Bureau of Indian Standards and the Bangladesh Standards and Testing Institution have begun cooperating on certification of goods, to resolve NTB-related export restrictions.


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Tags:  Regional CooperationIndiaBangladeshTrade FacilitationStandards Harmonization
 

May 2017
Regional Cooperation Initiatives to Bolster Greater Male Region Development

Mr. Wencai Zhang, Vice President, Asian Development Bank (ADB), encouraged the active participation of Maldives in regional cooperation programs, in his two-day visit to Male, Maldives. ADB plans to increase support for Maldives in 2018-2019 through its indicative investment program that focuses on developing the Greater Male region, and also includes the SASEC National Window Project.


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Tags:  Regional CooperationMaldivesTrade FacilitationSingle WindowADB
 

May 2017
Watch: Powering Asia in the 21st Century

The SASEC Vision lays out opportunities through industry linkages and regional trade:


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Tags:  SASEC 2025Regional CooperationTrade FacilitationTransportEnergyEconomic Corridor Development
 

May 2017
SAARC Finance Ministers Meet in Yokohama, Japan

Finance ministers and senior officials of member countries of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC), including Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka met on 5 May at Yokohama, Japan, at the sidelines of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) 50th Annual General Meeting.


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Tags:  ADBBangladeshBhutanCentral AsiaClimate ChangeEnergyIndiaMaldivesNepalPolicyRegional CooperationSAARCSASECSri LankaTradeTransport
 

April 2017
Connectivity Needed for BIMSTEC to Succeed

The BIMSTEC region hosts 21% of the world’s population and holds great potential for trade. Experts at the Conference on Facilitating Connectivity in Bay of Bengal Region held in Dhaka, Bangladesh, stressed the importance of regional connectivity for BIMSTEC to succeed and to facilitate economic growth among BIMSTEC member countries.


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Tags:  BIMSTECASEANSAARCRegional CooperationCooperationBangladesh
 

April 2017
Bangladesh Wants to Be South Asia’s Transport Hub

Bangladesh has the potential to become a transport hub for India, Bhutan, Nepal, Maldives, Sri Lanka, and Myamar, according to Mr. AMA Muhith, Finance Minister, Bangladesh. Turning Bangladesh into a regional and transshipment hub would enhance economic cooperation and result in collective economic growth for the countries, Mr. Muhith said at the SASEC Finance Ministers’ Meeting in New Delhi, India.


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Tags:  BangladeshBhutanEconomic Corridor DevelopmentEnergyICTIndiaNepalMaldivesMyanmarSASECSouth AsiaSri LankaTrade FacilitationTransportRegional Cooperation
 

March 2017
SASEC Program Is Now on Facebook

SASEC is now on Facebook, connecting followers to the most up-to-date news on regional cooperation in South Asia, SASEC events, project information, and publications that are all featured daily on www.sasec.asia. To follow SASEC on Facebook, simply click here; then click “Like” at the top of the Facebook page.


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Tags:  SASECBangladeshBhutanIndiaMaldivesMyanmarNepalSri LankaRegional CooperationTradeEconomic cooperation
 

February 2017
Bhutan Prime Minister Meets Incoming ADB Country Director

Bhutan Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay met Ms. Kanokpan Lao-Araya, incoming Country Director, Asian Development Bank (ADB) Bhutan Resident Mission, and Mr. Hun Kim, Director General, ADB South Asia Department in Thimphu, Bhutan, after presentation of Ms. Lao-Araya's credentials to Bhutan Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Damcho Dorji. ADB is upgrading Bhutan from a representative office to full-country operations.


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Tags:  ADBBhutanRegional CooperationSouth Asia
 

February 2017
ADB to Increase Support to Nepal to $1.2 Billion

ADB has allocated $843.8 million for Nepal for 2017-2019. An additional $356 million can be made available over the period for projects contributing to regional cooperation and integration and reduction of disaster risks, provided that Nepal continues to improve performance of its ongoing projects, according to Mr. Wencai Zhang, Vice President, ADB. 


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Tags:  NepalADBRegional CooperationInfrastructureEnergy
 

February 2017
Commentary: India Infrastructure: Connecting Bihar

The Ganges flows through the middle of Bihar, India, physically dividing it into north and south. Enhanced connectivity can improve lives and livelihoods, especially if the infrastructure is climate-sensitive. Ms. Saleha Waseem, Operations Communications Specialist at the Asian Development Bank’s South Asia Regional Department, shows how improving transport links would make a huge difference to millions of people.


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Tags:  ADBAgricultureBangladeshConnectivityDevelopmentEconomic corridorRegional CooperationIndiaNepalRoadServicesTransport
 

January 2017
Davos 2017: Accelerating South Asia's Growth and Development through Regional Cooperation

The interactive session “Harnessing Regional Cooperation in South Asia” held at the Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum discussed how regional economic cooperation is helping accelerate growth and development. Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina emphasized continuous initiatives, in economic cooperation in South Asia, including SAFTA and SASEC. India Minister of State for Commerce and Industry Nirmala Sitharaman lauded initiatives to boost connectivity.


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Tags:  South AsiaRegional CooperationTrade FacilitationTransportBangladeshBhutanIndiaNepal
 

January 2017
APTA Member Countries Move to Boost Trade in the Region

Bangladesh, China, India, Laos, South Korea, and Sri Lanka, member countries of the Asia-Pacific Trade Agreement (APTA), moved to expand trade and boost growth in the region by agreeing to increase the number of products under preferential tariff treatment to 10,677 items from 4,270 at the 4th session of the APTA Ministerial Council.


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Tags:  Asia-PacificBangladeshDevelopmentRegional CooperationServicesSri LankaSustainabilityTariffsTradeTrade FacilitationUNESCAPIndia
 

December 2016
Commentary: Nepal Hydropower to Bring Economic, Social, and Environmental Benefits

Nepal’s hydropower potential could be realized with an efficient technological base, entrepreneurial vision, a coordinated power trading approach, and sustained investment commitment. Hydropower development would bring economic, social, and environmental benefits in Nepal and the rest of the South Asian region. In this speech delivered at the Power Summit, Nepal Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal vowed to support domestic and foreign investors through a policy encouraging investment.


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Tags:  DevelopmentEnergyHydropowerIndiaInvestmentNepalPrivate SectorRegional CooperationTrade
 

December 2016
ADB Strategic Climate Fund Boosts the Nepal SASEC Power System Expansion Project Fund

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved an additional $20 million for the SASEC Power System Expansion Project in Nepal, to be provided by the ADB Strategic Climate Fund. This additional financing will support installation of utility-scale solar photovoltaic systems by 2018. The Government of Nepal is also providing complementary funding of $24.5 million.


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Tags:  EnergyNepalTradeHydropowerADBSASECClimate ChangeRenewable EnergySustainabilityRegional CooperationRegional IntegrationSolar EnergyIndia
 

December 2016
4th Regional Customs Enforcement Meeting

The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence under the Central Board of Excise and Customs organized the 4th Regional Customs Enforcement Meeting in New Delhi, India, as part of its Founding Day celebrations. The Heads of Customs Enforcement from Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan, Mauritius and Maldives were invited to participate in the said Meeting, which discussed issues of mutual concern, noted the need to share information and activate channels of coordination.


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Tags:  CustomsTrade FacilitationSouth AsiaRegional CooperationIndiaSri LankaMyanmarBangladeshNepalBhutanMaldivesMyanmarTrade
 

December 2016
Ferry Services between Colombo and Tuticorin Being Planned

The Colombo Shipping Corporation is planning to re-establish ferry linkages under public-private partnership. A SAARC Meeting of Experts from India, Maldives and Sri Lanka, recommended resumption of ferry services between Tamil Nadu and Sri Lanka. 


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Tags:  ADBIndiaMaldivesPublic-Private PartnershipRegional CooperationSAARCSri LankaTransport
 

October 2016
Bangladesh and Nepal Prime Ministers Keen on Hastening South Asian Integration

Bangladesh and Nepal officials have emphasized the need to both hasten and deepen integration among South Asian countries through the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC). Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said the region must work to finalize BIMSTEC Free Trade Area Framework Agreement deals to boost trade in the region. Nepal Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal stated that BIMSTEC can be a dynamic engine for growth and development.


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Tags:  BangladeshNepalBIMSTECRegional CooperationFree Trade Agreement
 

September 2016
India Calls on BRICS to Deepen Ties with BIMSTEC Countries

India Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that BRICS nations (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) share the responsibility to shape an agenda to help developing nations. He also spoke of the need to deepen ties with Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) countries.


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Tags:  IndiaBRICSBIMSTECRegional Cooperation
 

August 2016
Commentary: Is Regional Product Standard at All Feasible?

Absence of a harmonized system of standards among South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) members is one reason for the increase of technical barriers to trade, giving rise to non-tariff barriers that hamper SAARC intra-regional trade. A commentary by Mr. Wasi Ahmed, a former senior trade diplomat, discusses the growing recognition of importance of harmonized regional standards within SAARC.


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Tags:  SAARCTradeRegional CooperationStandards HarmonizationBangladeshIndia
 

July 2016
Commentary: 800 Million Reasons

Mr. Hun Kim, Director General, South Asia Department, ADB, describes how partnership of 6 South Asian countries through the ADB-supported South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation (SASEC) Program is helping propel economic growth in South Asia, amidst an uncertain regional and global economic climate, by working to increase trade volumes to reduce the number of impoverished people in the region.


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Tags:  Regional CooperationSouth AsiaEnergyTrade FacilitationTransportBangladeshBhutanIndiaMaldivesNepalSri Lanka
 

June 2016
India Can Gain from Regional Trade in Electricity

Regional trade in power could save India from having to invest in 35,000 megawatts in coal-fire facilities, estimated at $26 billion, over the next 25 years. Through energy trade with Afghanistan, Bhutan, and Nepal, India could benefit from reduced fuel costs and a 6.5% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.


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Tags:  IndiaEnergyRegional CooperationRenewable Energy
 

June 2016
ADB Blog: Why We Should Be Happy When SASEC Customs Officials Talk More

Meetings between Customs officials from SASEC member countries reaps benefits for the SASEC subregion and beyond, providing a platform for officers to decide the next steps in improving cross-border coordination and cooperation to resolve bottlenecks for trade at the borders. An Asian Development Bank (ADB) blog post by Ms. Rose McKenzie, Senior Regional Cooperation Specialist, Regional Cooperation and Operations Coordination, South Asia Regional Department, ADB, is shared.


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Tags:  CustomsTrade FacilitationRegional CooperationICTBBINBangladeshBhutanIndiaMaldivesNepal
 

June 2016
Nepal PM Stresses Importance of South Asia Regional Cooperation

Prime Minister of Nepal, Mr. KP Sharma Oli emphasized the importance of enhancing regional cooperation in South Asia, at the June 2016 SAARC Cabinet Secretaries Meeting held in Kathmandu, Nepal, where member states gathered to discuss good governance and how to resolve governance issues in the region.


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Tags:  NepalSAARCGovernanceRegional Cooperation
 

June 2016
SAARC CCI and SAARC Development Fund to Co-finance Projects

The South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Development Fund (SDF) and SAARC Chamber of Commerce and Industry have pledged to collaborate and co-finance projects under the SDF's social, economic and infrastructure windows to promote regional connectivity across the SAARC region.
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Tags:  SAARC CCISAARCRegional CooperationBangladeshBhutanIndiaMaldivesNepalSri LankaTradeTransport
 

May 2016
King of Bhutan Emphasizes Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal Cooperation

Bangladesh Foreign Minister Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali paid a courtesy call on the King of Bhutan Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck. The King lauded Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's initiatives to boost Bangladesh-Bhutan bilateral relations, and emphasized the Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal (BBIN) cooperation as a platform to achieve regional prosperity.
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Tags:  BhutanBangladeshBBINIndiaNepalTransportRegional Cooperation
 

May 2016
SASEC Member Countries Urged to Develop Synergies through Cooperation

Mr. Shaktikanta Das, Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs, India called on member countries of the SASEC Program to develop synergies through cooperation, in his inaugural address at the Second Regional Consultation Workshop on SASEC 2025. He also highlighted SASEC's strength as a project-driven initiative.
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Tags:  SASEC 2025Regional CooperationTrade FacilitationBBINPoverty ReductionIndia
 

April 2016
Bangladesh Prime Minister, Visiting Indian Minister of State Discuss Cooperation

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina called on neighboring countries to cooperate in the Bangladesh Government's efforts to become a developed nation. In a meeting with India's Minister of State on Independent Charge for Petroleum and Natural Gas, Mr. Dharmendra Pradhan, Prime Minister Hasina emphasized Bangladesh's focus on promoting connectivity.
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Tags:  BangladeshIndiaRegional CooperationSpecial Economic ZoneBBIN
 

March 2016
Bangladesh Prime Minister, Bhutan Queen Mother Discuss Growing Bilateral Ties

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina expressed satisfaction over the growing engagement between Bangladesh and Bhutan. The Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal initiative, according to the Prime Minister, further widens the scope of cooperation between the two countries. The Queen of Bhutan likewise expressed the hope that bilateral relations between the two countries will continue to strengthen.
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Tags:  BangladeshBhutanBBINRegional Cooperation
 

December 2015
Celebrating 30 Years of SAARC

On 8 December 1985, the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Charter was signed by Heads of State/Government of SAARC Member States during the First SAARC Summit held in Dhaka, Bangladesh. SAARC promotes welfare economics, collective self-reliance among the countries of South Asia, and accelerated socio-cultural development in the South Asia region.
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Tags:  SAARCRegional CooperationSouth AsiaBangladeshBhutanIndiaNepalMaldivesSri Lanka
 

September 2015
Taskforces to Promote SAARC Connectivity and Trade

Taskforces in energy cooperation, trade facilitation, trade infrastructure, foreign direct investment, and people-to-people contact will be formed to promote connectivity and trade in the South Asia Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) region. The taskforces will examine key areas for regional cooperation in greater depth.
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Tags:  SAARCPrivate SectorRegional Cooperation
 

September 2015
ADB Study Quantifies How Cross-Border Power Trading can Benefit South Asia

An ADB study has measured the economic and reliability benefits of cross-border electricity trading for countries in South Asia. Findings reveal that power trading in South Asia can not only serve the region's growing demand for energy but also save the region billions of dollars. Recommendations include a market-driven process for cross-border power trading implemented under a regulatory framework across the region.
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Tags:  EnergySAARCRegional Cooperation
 

September 2015
Commentary: Why South Asia Needs Regional Integration

Regional cooperation and integration can help improve cross-border connectivity, increase regional trade and investment, mobilize regional savings for regional investment, reduce macroeconomic vulnerability to shocks, facilitate cooperation in regional public goods, and improve the overall governance standards across the region. A commentary on regional integration in South Asia is shared.
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Tags:  Regional CooperationRegional IntegrationTrade FacilitationTrade
 

July 2015
BRICS Outlines Economic Cooperation Strategy at Ufa Summit

Prime Minister Narendra Modi outlined a 10-point program for future cooperation, ‘Das Kadam’, proposed during his address at the BRICS – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa – plenary at the 7th summit in Ufa, Russia. The program included a trade fair, railway research center, and digital initiative, among others. The Economic Cooperation Strategy was also adopted by the world’s five growing economies at the Summit.
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Tags:  BRICSIndiaRegional Cooperation
 

April 2015
ADB's 48th Annual Meeting has Regional Cooperation on the Agenda

The 48th Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) will discuss regional developments in Asia and the Pacific on 2-5 May 2015 in Baku, Azerbaijan. Scheduled events will explore the general theme “Fostering Partnership for Development,” including the need to enhance regional cooperation and integration within Central Asia and the South Caucasus.
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Tags:  ADBRegional CooperationCentral Asia
 

March 2015
BIMSTEC Finalizes MoU for Inter-regional Power Grid

Senior officials of BIMSTEC countries have finalized a draft deal to set up grid connectivity, allowing its seven member countries to share their surplus electricity with each other. The draft deal came out of the 5th Meeting of the BIMSTEC Task Force on Trans-Power Exchange, and provides a broad framework for grid interconnections across the region. It is estimated that the seven BIMSTEC countries have a combined hydropower potential of about 290,000 MW.
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Tags:  EnergyBIMSTECRegional Cooperation
 

February 2015
Nepal Prime Minister Koirala Emphasizes Importance of Regional Cooperation to Nepal's Foreign Policy

Nepal Prime Minister Sushil Koirala emphasized Nepal's strong engagement in the process of regional cooperation—through membership in the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) and Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC)—as “a major defining feature” of Nepal's foreign policy in a speech delivered at the 67th anniversary of Nepal Council of World Affairs on 18 February 2015.
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Tags:  NepalRegional CooperationIndia
 

January 2015
Bangladesh Potential in Economic Expansion Placed at 7.3%

Asian Development Bank Chief Economist Shang Jin-Wei has put Bangladesh’s potential to grow at 7.3%, above its current average of 6%. Despite its vast infrastructure needs, this makes Bangladesh one of the top 20 global performers in economic expansion. To continue this level of growth, it needs a reliable supply of power to reduce the cost of doing business.
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Tags:  BangladeshEnergyRegional Cooperation
 

January 2015
ADB Vice President Speaks at Partnership Summit in India

During Plenary Session 5 of the annual Confederation of Indian Industry Partnership Summit, Asian Development Bank (ADB) Vice President Wencai Zhang spoke on growth and cooperation in South Asia. He emphasized the benefits of regional cooperation and cross-border connectivity such as reduction in trade costs, efficiency, and participation in regional and global value chains.
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Tags:  IndiaRegional CooperationRegional Integration
 

December 2014
Advisory Committee Evaluates SAARC Summit

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Nepal formed an advisory committee on 27 March 2014 to give suggestions in preparation for the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Summit and play a proactive role in the SAARC process, particularly in implementing decisions related to regional integration. On 9 December 2014, the committee evaluated and received feedback on the SAARC Summit, concluding unanimously that the 18th SAARC Summit was a success.
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Tags:  NepalSAARCRegional Cooperation
 

December 2014
SAARC's 30th Charter Day Celebrated

The South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) marked its 30th Charter Day at the SAARC Secretariat in Kathmandu, Nepal on 8 December 2014. SAARC Secretary General Arjun Bahadur Thapa hosted a reception attended by Nepali Vice President Paramananda Jha as chief guest along with dignitaries, high-ranking government officials, and representatives of civil society, business community, and media.
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Tags:  SAARCRegional CooperationNepal
 

November 2014
SAARC Leaders Adopt 36-Point Kathmandu Declaration

The 18th South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Summit concluded on 27 November 2014, adopting the 36-point Kathmandu Declaration, which emphasized enhanced infrastructure connectivity, creation of free trade, implementation of trade facilitation measures, and SAARC project implementation, among others. The Summit launched regional and sub-regional development projects in the agreed areas of cooperation and connectivity.
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Tags:  SAARCEnergyRegional Cooperation
 

October 2014
Improving Women’s Participation in Regional Cooperation and Integration

The Validation Forum on Gender Dimensions of Regional Cooperation and Integration in South Asia, held on 28-29 October in ADB Headquarters, took stock of progress made in mainstreaming gender in multi-, regional, bilateral and country policies and legal frameworks.
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Tags:  GenderRegional CooperationRegional IntegrationTrade
 

October 2014
SAARC Member Countries Officially Invited to 18th SAARC Summit

Nepal Minister for Foreign Affairs Mahendra Bahadur Pandey paid official state visits to Heads of State and member country governments of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) – comprising Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka – to personally submit Nepal Prime Minister Sushil Koirala's invitation letters for the 18th SAARC Summit.
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Tags:  SAARCRegional CooperationRegional Integration
 

October 2014
UNESCAP's Transport Committee Drafts Regional Cooperation Framework for Facilitation of International Railway Transport

A draft Regional Cooperation Framework for Facilitation of International Railway Transport was discussed at a regional meeting organized by the Transport Division of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP) on 13-15 October 2014 in Bangkok, Thailand.
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Tags:  TransportRegional CooperationUNESCAP
 

October 2014
SASEC Assists Bangladesh Strengthen Infrastructure Development

The Asian Development Bank’s South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation Program will finance key infrastructure projects worth $492 million under its country operations business plan: the second Bangladesh-India electrical grid interconnection ($105 million), Dohazari-Cox’s Bazar railway link ($217 million), and road and trade facilitation ($170 million).
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Tags:  BangladeshRegional CooperationEnergyTrade Facilitation
 

September 2014
Gender Dimensions of Regional Cooperation

The South Asia Department of Asian Development Bank (ADB) will host a validation forum on the Gender Dimensions of Regional Cooperation and Integration in South Asia, on 28-29 October 2014 at ADB Headquarters in Manila, Philippines. Results of two complementary studies (i) “Gender, Trade and Green Growth in Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal” and (ii) “Gender and Safe Mobility: Promising Global and Regional Practices” will be presented.
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Tags:  GenderRegional CooperationSouth Asia
 

September 2014
Indian Prime Minister Receives Foreign Minister of Bangladesh

Bangladesh Foreign Minister Mr. Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali visited Prime Minister Shri Narenda Modi in New Delhi for the 3rd Meeting of the India-Bangladesh Joint Consultative Commission (JCC) on 19 September 2014. Foreign Minister Ali expressed appreciation for Prime Minister Modi's leadership and relations with the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation.
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Tags:  IndiaBangladeshRegional Cooperation
 

September 2014
Bangladesh to Sign MOU for Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank

Bangladesh has agreed in principle to join the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank established by China in early 2014 to invest in infrastructure construction in Asia and promote economic cooperation. Economic Relations Division Secretary Mohammad Mejbahuddin will sign the Memorandum of Understanding in October.
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Tags:  BangladeshRegional CooperationRegional Development Bank
 

September 2014
11th Asia-Europe Finance Ministers’ Meeting

Finance Ministers and representatives from 49 Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) Member Countries and the European Commission attended the ASEM Finance Ministers’ Meeting in Milan, Italy on 12 September 2014. The Ministers renewed their commitment to increased inter-regional investment and trade flows, protectionism resistance, and a successful conclusion to the World Trade Organization Doha Round.
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Tags:  Regional CooperationWTOTrade
 

September 2014
Japan Assists Sri Lanka to Become Regional Hub

Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s recent visit to Sri Lanka recognized the country’s promise as a future regional hub. As maritime and agro-based nations, both Japan and Sri Lanka have advantages in developing bilateral trade. Japan will extend its technologies and skills to Sri Lanka, improve infrastructure, and reduce power shortages in the country. Sri Lanka will provide maritime access to huge markets and ensure freedom and safety of navigation in the region.
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Tags:  Sri LankaBilateral TradeRegional Cooperation
 

September 2014
Regional Energy Trade Workshop Held at ADB

The Asian Development Bank held a Regional Energy Trade Workshop at its headquarters in Manila, Philippines on September 8-9, 2014. Mr. Bindu Lohani, ADB Vice President for Knowledge Management and Sustainable Development, delivered the welcoming remarks.
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Tags:  EnergyADBSAARCRegional Cooperation
 

August 2014
Stronger Regional Ties Necessary for India's Economic Development

Asian Development Bank President Takehiko Nakao expressed full support for Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's vision of greater regional integration and connectivity at a meeting on August 27 during a 2-day visit to India. Strengthening ties with South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation countries is a focus of Prime Minister Modi's government.
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Tags:  ADBEnergyIndiaRegional Cooperation
 

August 2014
Eighth Meeting of SAARC Energy Working Group

The Eighth Meeting of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Energy Working Group was held in Colombo, Sri Lanka on 25-26 August 2014 to discuss regional energy cooperation in South Asia. The meeting requested the Asian Development Bank (ADB) to provide technical assistance in the conduct of a regional transmission master plan study, including a detailed scenario on regional power transmission interconnections.
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Tags:  SAARCEnergyRegional Cooperation
 

August 2014
'Regional Connectivity for Shared Prosperity': UNESCAP's Roadmap to An Inclusive Future

Economic dynamism in the Asia-Pacific region has been driven primarily by individual economies, yet to ensure sustainable growth in the future, countries must integrate and cooperate to share prosperity, according to the 2014edition of the Economic and Social Survey of Asia and the Pacific.
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Tags:  Regional CooperationPoverty ReductionUNESCAPAsia-PacificEnergyConnectivityICTLDCSASECTradeTransport
 

August 2014
India Extends US$1 Billion Loan to Nepal for Energy, Infrastructure Projects

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a two-day visit to Kathmandu, Nepal on 3-4 August 2014, the first bilateral visit by an Indian Prime Minister in 17 years. At a speech delivered to the Parliament of Nepal, Modi announced India’s desire to help Nepal and offered an additional soft loan of US $1 billion for energy projects and infrastructure development.
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Tags:  EnergyIndiaNepalRegional CooperationTransport
 

July 2014
8th SAFTA Ministerial Council Focuses on Regional Economic Cooperation

The Royal Kingdom of Bhutan hosted the Eighth Meeting of the South Asia Free Trade Area (SAFTA) Ministerial Council in Thimphu, Bhutan on 24 July 2014. Increasing regional economic cooperation to boost intra-regional trade among member countries of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation was the primary agenda.
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Tags:  Regional CooperationTrade PolicySAARC
 

July 2014
Coastal Shipping between Bangladesh and India to Enhance Transport Efficiency, Trade

A coastal shipping arrangement between Bangladesh and India will soon facilitate faster shipment of goods between the two countries, and enable better access to India's northeastern regions. It is also expected to give bilateral trade a boost. Trials runs in Chittagong port and Kolkata port are scheduled to begin by October 14.
Read More>>

Tags:  TransportRegional CooperationConnectivity
 

July 2014
ARIC Launches RCI Chat

RCI Chat, the monthly newsletter of the Asia Regional Integration Center (ARIC), features the South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation Program in its maiden issue. Subscribe to receive the monthly issue.
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Tags:  Regional Cooperation
 

July 2014
SAARC Workshop on Cross-Border Power Trade

Key energy sector policy makers, regulators and other stakeholders from the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) member countries gathered on 26-27 June 2014, in Kathmandu, Nepal for the SAARC Energy Centre (SEC) Workshop on Harmonizing Regulations and Policies for Cross Border Power Trade, Risk Sharing and Financial Settlement Issues.
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Tags:  EnergySAARCRegional Cooperation
 

June 2014
ADB-GIZ Regional Workshop for Green Freight and Logistics

Over 100 participants gathered to discuss green freight and logistics at a regional training workshop organized by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ). The workshop took stock of best practices and systematic approaches toward efficient logistics and green freight, and provided a platform to explore multiple initiatives currently being developed in Asia.
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Tags:  TransportRegional CooperationSustainability
 

June 2014
AmCham in Bangladesh Briefed on SASEC and Regional Cooperation

The American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham) in Bangladesh was briefed by Mr. Kazuhiko Higuchi, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) Country Director for Bangladesh, and chief guest at AmCham’s monthly meeting on 26 June 2014.
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Tags:  Regional CooperationBangladeshAmerican Chamber of Commerce
 

May 2014
The Maldives and Sri Lanka Join SASEC Program

Nodal officials of the founding SASEC member countries — Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal — endorsed inclusion of the Maldives and Sri Lanka as new members at the SASEC Nodal Officials’ Meeting 2014 in Astana on May 3.
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Tags:  Regional CooperationSri LankaMaldives
 

May 2014
From 4 Strands to 6: New SASEC Logo Launched

The new SASEC logo unveiled in May reflects the inclusion of the Maldives and Sri Lanka into the SASEC program. It also represents the continuous commitment of SASEC to strengthen regional cooperation and integration in South Asia.
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Tags:  Regional CooperationRegional IntegrationConnectivity
 

May 2014
SASEC Trade Facilitation Strategic Framework 2014–2018 Endorsed by Members

SASEC countries Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal have endorsed the SASEC Trade Facilitation Strategic Framework 2014–2018 (TF Strategy) for implementation.  The TF Strategy supports the mission of the SASEC Transport and Trade Facilitation Strategy “to promote the prosperity of the subregion by facilitating the efficient movement of trade across the borders”.
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Tags:  Trade FacilitationRegional CooperationSouth Asia
 

April 2014
Regional Cooperation in a Highly Interconnected World

The Asian Economic Integration Monitor (AEIM), a semiannual review of regional economic cooperation and integration in Asia covers regional economic updates, intraregional trade, financial integration and investment, and the importance of disaster risk financing instruments. The Theme Chapter: Insuring Against Asia’s Natural Catastrophes discusses market solutions and the role of government in developing disaster risk financing and strengthening financial resilience.
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Tags:  Regional CooperationTradeFinancial integration
 

February 2014
SAARC Development Fund Brainstorming Workshop for Evolving Strategic Plan

The South Asia Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Development Fund met on 12-14 February 2014 in New Delhi, India to brainstorm on its evolving strategic plan. It reviewed the purpose, methodology, and sustainability of social window activities; explored fund-raising opportunities and loan instruments; and prioritized projects for funding.
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Tags:  SAARCRegional CooperationConnectivity
 

February 2014
ADB Approves $500,000 for SASEC Cross-Border Power Trade Development Technical Assistance Project

The Asian Development Bank has approved technical assistance of $500,000 for SASEC member countries to develop a comprehensive long-term regional transmission master plan for the region to more effectively coordinate power generation and transmission. The project aims to improve the planning and coordination capacity of SASEC countries to foster cross-border power trading.
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Tags:  EnergyRegional CooperationTrade
 

January 2014
ADB Regional Cooperation Operations Business Plan (RCOBP) 2014-2016 for South Asia

ADB's third Regional Cooperation Operations Business Plan (RCOBP) 2014-2016 for South Asia under its South Asia Regional Cooperation Strategy (RCS) 2011-2015 details a cumulative indicative lending program of $3.3 billion and maintains focus on improved regional connectivity, increased cross-border trade, and strengthened regional economic cooperation.
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Tags:  Regional CooperationSouth AsiaInfrastructure
 

October 2012
Asia-Pacific Trade Facilitation Forum 2012

ADB in cooperation with UNESCAP organized the Asia-Pacific Trade Facilitation Forum (APTFF) held on 30-31 October 2012.
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Tags:  ADBAsia-PacificDevelopmentRegional CooperationSASECSouth AsiaSri LankaTrade FacilitationUNESCAP
 

October 2012
South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation Transmission Utility Forum

Many countries in the South Asia region face the challenges of energy shortages as they gear up for higher economic growth.
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Tags:  EnergyRegional CooperationSASECSouth AsiaSri Lanka
 

June 2012
SAARC Statistical Workshop

SAARC Secretariat to conduct a study for the development of a web-based user-protected interface and the institution of a designated Statistics Cell.
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Tags:  BhutanEconomic cooperationRegional CooperationRegional IntegrationSAARC
 

June 2012
SAARC and ADB Workshop

A SAARC-ADB workshop held at the SAARC Secretariat Kathmandu on 21-22 June finalized the drafts of three studies.
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Tags:  ADBEconomic cooperationRegional CooperationRegional IntegrationNepalSAARCServicesTrade
 

May 2012
SAARC Finance Ministers Meet in Manila

SAARC Finance Ministers met at an informal meeting in Manila on 3 May 2012 on the sidelines of the 45th ADB Annual Meeting.
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Tags:  Economic cooperationRegional CooperationADBRegional IntegrationSAARCSouth AsiaTrade
 

May 2012
SASEC Nodal Officials Meeting

The Nodal Officials of the SASEC Program met at the sidelines of the 45th ADB Annual Meeting in Manila on 3 May 2012.
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Tags:  ADBEnergyICTRegional CooperationSASECSouth AsiaTrade FacilitationTransport
 

March 2012
Kunming Conference

About 160 officials from 30 countries participated in the ADB conference on RCI held on 26-27 March in the PRC.
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Tags:  ADBClimate ChangeEconomic corridorEnvironmentRegional CooperationRegional IntegrationSouth AsiaSustainabilityTransportTrade Facilitation