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BIMSTECBay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral, Technical and Economic Cooperation (formerly Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka, Thailand Economic Cooperation; Thailand)
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An announcement issued at the meeting urged to fast-track the creation of a BIMSTEC free trade zone, as well as cooperation in 14 priority industries including energy, tourism and regional connectivity.
BIMSTEC is therefore an idea whose time has come," Singh said.
At the end of the ministerial meeting, the seven members of BIMSTEC agreed to develop multi-transportation linkages by liberalizing air transport and building highway linkages among India, Myanmar and Thailand and among Bangladesh, Myanmar and Thailand.
Rajapaksa will be among leaders of other BIMSTEC - the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation - countries to attend the Nov.
Earlier, in February 2004, it concluded an agreement to establish BIMSTEC, a regional economic cooperation agreement with Bhutan, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Thailand.
This year, we have identified initiatives including Chiang Mai's strategic direction towards the Greater Mekong Sub-region (GMS) and BIMSTEC as well as Chiang Mai Sister Cities.
President Mahinda Rajapaksa held bilateral discussions with several leaders on the sidelines of the third BIMSTEC Summit in Myanmar.
In this backdrop, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will be meeting Sri Lankan President Mahindra Rajapaksa in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar, on the sidelines of the BIMSTEC summit.
The BIMSTEC Summit scheduled for February 8, 2007, in India was also deferred due to political instability in member states, including Nepal, but eventually took place in November 2008.
In addition, Thailand has also formed new connections with progress of profitable agreements with BIMSTEC and Chile.
Manmohan Singh has urged the members of BIMSTEC (Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation) to improve collaboration in fighting terrorism and also work on signing a convention on extradition.