BIMSTEC workshop on promotion of agriculture trade and investment
The two days workshop on Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) on promotion of Agriculture Trade and Investment in Bay of Bengal region was organized by the Department of Agricultural Marketing and Cooperatives (DAMC), Ministry of Agriculture and Forests (MOAF) concluded last Thursday in the capital.
Mr. M.K Dutta, Director of Trade and Investment, Department of Mekong Institute in Thailand facilitated the workshop who also shared his Mekong sub-region experience on agriculture trade and investment related to BIMSTEC.
Recognizing the need to enhance the regional agricultural trade amongst BIMSTEC Member States, the DAMC propose to organize where the member state had opportunities to present a paper on agriculture trade and investment of respective countries to facilitate discussions on the strategies to enhance trade and investment within the member states.
The Director for BIMSTEC, Kunzang N Tshering said that the BIMSTEC nations are primarily agrarian economies with good share of their GDP coming from agriculture.
“Therefore, agriculture requires meaningful investments in potential areas of cooperation between and among the member countries,” he said. He added that this workshop is one among the nine identified proposed projects.
He said that trade and investment sector has been a priority area of cooperation in the BIMSTEC process.
The workshop provided an important platform
for all member states of BIMSTEC and delegates to discuss on the agro-businesses linkage to the regional value chain through innovation, application and transfer of technologies.
Director General for DAMC, Ugyen Penjor said that “Each member state has its own strength and weaknesses in the agriculture industry, and it is imperative that we com- pliment, support, trade and invest for mutual benefits.”
During the workshop, participants shared current status and trends in agriculture trade and investment, shared agriculture trade and investment opportunities, identified challenges of trading and investments and provided recommendations for each member state to help them boost trade and investments between and among BIMSTEC member states.
The project will not only help enhance local businesses and trade relations, it will work towards achieving food self-sufficiency which will be cost effective both in terms of economic and environment.
Meanwhile, an official from ministry of economic affairs presented the foreign direct investment policy, status and opportunities in the country. An official presented that the ministry had initiated several policies to encourage foreign investors that includes economic development policy, fiscal incentives, licensing and public-private partnership.
An official said that why Bhutan should chooses Bhutan as investment destination. An official said that investors should choose Bhutan because of political stability, peace and happiness, vibrant culture, having clean and renewable source of power and so on.
Meanwhile, the workshop was attended by two participants each from Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Thailand, BIMSTEC secretariat and one participant from Sri Lanka.