South Asia to reap the full ben­e­fits of close re­gional co­op­er­a­tion: Bhutan

Bhutan Times - - Front Page - Biku Gu­rung

Ly­onch­hen Tsh­er­ing Tob­gay who at­tended the 18th SAARC Sum­mit held from 26-27 Novem­ber 2014 in Kathmandu, Nepal urged the na­tion coun­tries to ex­er­cise the po­lit­i­cal will and take nec­es­sary steps to make it pos­si­ble for the peo­ple of South Asia to also reap the full ben­e­fits of the re­gional co­op­er­a­tion.

At the in­au­gu­ral ses­sion of the sum­mit, Ly­onch­hen con­veyed the warm greet­ings and good wishes of His Majesty King Jigme Kh­e­sar Nam­gay Wangchuck. Talk­ing on the theme of the sum­mit – ‘Deeper In­te­gra­tion for Peace and Pros­per­ity’, Ly­onch­hen said ‘We be­lieve that whether we do so now, on our own terms, or later, un­der com­pul­sion-forces are at play, which can only be ad­e­quately ad­dressed through the col­lec­tive en­deav­ors of all na­tions. Such united, co­or­di­nated re­sponses are im­per­a­tive in or­der to tackle cross bor­der crimes like ter­ror­ism, trafficking in hu­mans and drugs, as well as to ad­dress wider common chal­lenges like cli­mate change, poverty alle­vi­a­tion and in­deed to re­al­ize our dreams of pros­per­ing to­gether through in­creased in­trare­gional trade.’

He fur­ther said that South Asia re­gion is blessed with abun­dant nat­u­ral re­sources and we have make is sure that it is used op­ti­mally and re­dis­tributed more eq­ui­tably. As the re­gion has one fifth of the world pop­u­la­tion and the pop­u­la­tion,

which is the great­est and the most pre­cious as­set which is par­tic­u­larly young needs bet­ter ed­u­ca­tion and skills de­vel­op­ments. The poverty alle­vi­a­tion strat­egy of the re­gion must be aimed at mak­ing the op­ti­mal use of both the abun­dant nat­u­ral re­sources and the rich hu­man re­sources of the re­gion.

Of the three Agree­ments i.e. SAARC Mo­tor Ve­hi­cles for the Reg­u­la­tion of Pas­sen­ger and Cargo Ve­hic­u­lar Traf­fic, SAARC In­ter-gov­ern­men­tal Frame­work for En­ergy Co­op­er­a­tion (Elec­tric­ity) and SAARC Re­gional Rail­ways, ex­pected to be signed dur­ing the sum­mit, SAARC In­ter­gov­ern­men­tal Frame­work for En­ergy Co­op­er­a­tion (Elec­tric­ity) was signed by the Min­is­ters of For­eign/ Ex­ter­nal Af­fairs of the SAARC mem­ber coun­tries on 27th Novem­ber 2014.

In the morn­ing of the clos­ing day, the Heads of the State/Gov­ern­ment, For­eign/Ex­ter­nal Min­is­ters and the For­eign Sec­re­taries were flow to the Dwarika’s Re­sort, Dhu­likhel for re­treat.

In the side­line of the SAARC Sum­mit many bi­lat­eral meet­ings were held be­tween the SAARC mem­ber coun­tries.

On Novem­ber 25, Ly­onch­hen Tsh­er­ing Tob­gay held the first bi­lat­eral meet­ing with the Sri Lankan Pres­i­dent Mahinda Ra­japaksa. Ly­onch­hen thanked the Pres­i­dent for Sri Lanka’s gen­er­ous support in train­ing and ed­u­cat­ing Bhutanese stu­dents pur­su­ing medicine in Sri Lanka. The Pres­i­dent con­grat­u­lated Ly­onch­hen for the won­der­ful speech dur­ing the in­au­gu­ral of the sum­mit.

On Novem­ber 26, Ly­onch­hen Tsh­er­ing Tob­gay met with H.E. Shri Naren­dra Modi, the Prime Min­is­ter of In­dia. Ly­onch­hen con­grat­u­lated Mr. Modi for the ex­cel­lent speech de­liv­ered dur­ing the in­au­gu­ral of the sum­mit. The In­dian Prime Min­is­ter com­mended on Bhutan’s en­deavor to de­clare the year 2015 as the Na­tional Read­ing Year and com­mit­ted to send ex­perts who or­ga­nized ‘Gu­jarat is Read­ing’ to Bhutan. Mr. Modi also ex­tended an invitation to Ly­onch­hen to at­tend ‘Vi­brant Gu­jarat’ in Jan­uary next year. This was the third meet­ing be­tween Ly­onch­hen and Mr. Modi within a times­pan of six month.

Ly­onch­hen Tsh­er­ing Tob­gay met with H.E Rt. Hon. Mr. Sushil Koirala, Prime Min­is­ter of Nepal on Novem­ber 26, 2014. Ly­onch­hen thanked Mr. Koirala for ex­tend­ing im­me­di­ate hos­pi­tal­ity to him and his del­e­gates to visit the three holy sites – Swayamb­hu­nath; Boud­dhanath; and Pashu­pati­nath on the day of his ar­rival in Nepal. Ly­onch­hen also thanked Mr. Koirala for the won­der­ful ar­range­ments of the 18th SAARC Sum­mit.

On 26th Novem­ber 2014 Ly­onch­hen Tsh­er­ing Tob­gay met with H.E Dr. Mo­ham­mad Ashraf Ghani Ah­madzai, Pres­i­dent of Afghanistan. Dr. Ah­madzai com­mended Ly­onch­hen for the won­der­ful speech de­liv­ered dur­ing the in­au­gu­ral ses­sion of the sum­mit. Dr. Ah­madzai is a Scholar and ex­pert on South Asia.

Ly­onch­hen Tsh­er­ing Tob­gay met H.E. Mr. Muham­mad Nawaz Sharif, Prime Min­is­ter of Pak­istan in Kathmandu, Nepal on Novem­ber 26, 2014. Ly­onch­hen said that he look for­ward to work­ing with Pak­istan in har­ness­ing the op­por­tu­ni­ties ex­ist­ing in the SAARC re­gion.

Apart from the bi­lat­eral meet­ing with the SAARC mem­ber coun­tries Ly­onch­hen was called upon by Ms. Nisha De­sai Biswal, As­sis­tant Sec­re­tary of State for South and Cen­tral Af­fairs, USA and H.E Dr. Ab­bas Akhoundi, Min­is­ter of Road and Ur­ban De­vel­op­ment, Iran.

Ly­onch­hen’s del­e­ga­tion to the sum­mit in­cluded Ly­onpo Rinzin Dorji, Min­istry of For­eign Af­fairs (MoFA), Ly­onpo D.N. Dhungyel, Min­istry of In­for­ma­tion and Com­mu­ni­ca­tion, Mr. Yeshey Photo: Dorji,UN MoFA and other se­nior of­fi­cials from MoFA.

The 19th SAARC Sum­mit will be held in Pak­istan.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Bhutan

© PressReader. All rights reserved.