Dec 20, Colombo: Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena today speaking to the BIMSTEC nations called for a strong cooperation program to alleviate poverty and promote prosperity in the region.
The Third Ministerial Meeting of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) was commenced under the patronage of President Maithripala Sirisena in Colombo, Wednesday (20).
The two-day conference with the participation of representatives from seven BIMSTEC countries - Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Thailand - will primarily focus on the eradication of poverty within the BIMSTEC region.
Addressing the meeting President Sirisena emphasized the need to make a commitment by all to eradicate poverty from the human society, not only in the region. He said the responsibility lies with the world's powerful nations, to ensure that no one will starve in the world.
President Sirisena said that Sri Lanka's poverty alleviation program was implemented this year and in parallel to this, the year 2018 was declared as the National Food Production Year.
The President said that he is pleased to hold this event in Sri Lanka at a time when BIMSTEC region is becoming an important player in the international geopolitics.
The President also emphasized the persistence necessary to achieve the goals of the region in achieving the goal of the BIMSTEC.
Representatives, including the State Minister of Finance and Planning of Bangladesh, Muhammad Abdul Mannan, Bhutan's Minister of Finance, Lyonpo Namgay Dorji, Myanmar's Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation, Minister of Internal Affairs of Thailand attended the Meeting. Minister of Social Empowerment, Welfare and Kandyan Heritage S.B. Dissanayake, Secretary to the Ministry Sriyani Weerakoon and others participated on this occasion.