The 15th BIMSTEC ministerial meeting was conducted at Soaltee Crowne Plaza in Kathmandu, Nepal on 10 August 2017. BIMSTEC stands for Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation. The two-day conference was initiated by Nepal’s Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba and carried on by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs Krishna Bahadur Mahara.
Highlights of BIMSTEC Ministerial Meeting:
- External Affairs Minister of India, Sushma Swaraj represented India in the meeting.
- The main aim of the meeting was to establish a free business agreement among all the BIMSTEC members and try to reduce the duty on trading goods.
- Also, the date of the fourth BIMSTEC Summit was to be finalized at the meeting.
- Other concerning issues relating to services and goods, investments and proper connectivity was also discussed at the two-day meeting.
- Various high-level dignitaries attended the meeting. Foreign and External Affairs Ministers from the member nations including Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and Sri Lanka and the Deputy Foreign Ministers from Myanmar and Thailand also attended the summit.
- Sushma Swaraj had meetings with Nepal Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba and President Bidhya Devi Bhandari and discussed several important matters.