2nd BIMSTEC Agriculture Ministers Meeting:
India hosted the Second Agriculture Ministerial-level meeting of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC).
Highlights of the Meeting:
- India urged the member countries to cooperate in developing a comprehensive regional strategy to strengthen cooperation for the transformation of agriculture.
- It also urged the member countries to adopt a conducive agricultural food system and a healthy diet for all by referring to the importance of millet as a nutritious food and the efforts made by India to promote millet and its products during the International Year of Millets – 2023.
- Natural and ecological farming should be promoted to conserve agricultural biodiversity and reduce the use of chemicals.
- Along with digital farming and precision farming, initiatives under the ‘One Health’ approach are also taking shape in India.
- Highlighted India’s statement at the 5th BIMSTEC Summit held in Colombo in March, 2022 on enhancing regional cooperation between BIMSTEC nations for food security, peace and prosperity in the region.
- Adopted the Action Plan for Strengthening BIMSTEC Agricultural Cooperation (2023-2027).
- An MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) between the BIMSTEC Secretariat and the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) has been signed and approval has been given to bring fisheries and livestock sub-sectors under the Agricultural Working Group.
- The BIMSTEC is a regional organisation comprising seven Member States: five deriving from South Asia, including Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka and two from Southeast Asia, including Myanmar and Thailand.