The Special Session of Senior Officials’ Meeting (S-SOM) of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) was held virtually on Wednesday.
Foreign Secretary Bharat Raj Paudyal led the Nepali delegation to the Special Session of the SOM. He made an assessment of progress made by the BIMSTEC in implementing the decisions of the 4th BIMSTEC Summit held in Kathmandu in August 2018 and other high-level meetings following the Summit. He called for making concerted efforts to make BIMSTEC an effective organisation through deeper cooperation among the Member States for the progress and prosperity of the peoples in the BIMSTEC region.
The Special SOM Session touched on a range of pertinent matters of the organisation such as norm setting and institutional building, streamlining of the sectors and sub-sectors of cooperation under BIMSTEC, finalising of the legal instruments and documents including the BIMSTEC Charter, BIMSTEC Master Plan for Connectivity, and revising of the budget of the BIMSTEC Secretariat for FY 2020 and estimated budget for FY 2021.
As per the press statement issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) on Wednesday, the meeting also made deliberations on preparation for the 17th BIMSTEC Ministerial Meeting and finalised draft text of the Joint Statement of the Ministerial Meeting to be held virtually on 01 April 2021.
The Meeting was hosted by Sri Lanka, the current Chair of the BIMSTEC.
Nepali delegation included Senior Officials of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs; Ministry of Finance; Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs; Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation; Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Supplies; and, Ministry of Physical Infrastructure and Transport.