Bay of Bengal Forum of CSOs and Media is a forum of CSOs and Medias of the BIMSTEC countries. The main aim of the forum is to revive the historical relation and cooperation, to promote regional connectivity and all above for the interest of marginalized section of population of the area. Our efforts will be to strengthen the relationship among the CSOs and Medias to influence the policy makers of the BIMSTEC countries to take decisions in favour of the mass people.
People-to-People ties and a constituency among Civil Society is essential for successfully integrating the Indo-Pacific Economic Corridor (IPEC), linking South and South East Asia. A number of regional platforms have been developed over the last three decades to promote regional integration, and to alleviate poverty and support sustainable development. The Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) is one such regional platform, established in 1997 with Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka and Thailand as initial member countries. The group expanded when Burma (Myanmar), Nepal and Bhutan were admitted following its first summit held in Bangkok in 2004.
The member countries of BIMSTEC have a cumulative population of approximately 1.57 billion people or almost 22 percent of the world population. Current GDP is calculated around $2.77trillion combined, with a market size assessed at $793 billion (www.bimstec.org). BIMSTEC is a potential platform to work on areas of agreement and mutual interest between the states of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) andthe Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).The platform can enhance cooperation in fields from ocean resource mobilization to disaster management in addition to global concerns such as connectivity and climate change. BIMSTEC can, indeed must, play an effective role among the member countries to build ties that alleviate poverty and lead to broadly shared economic prosperity.
COAST Trust (www.coastbd.net) is providing the secretariat support to the forum with one Secretariat Coordinator.
This website is a platform to make the communication among members of the forum and also among the people. It will be updated regularly with information of the activities of the forum as well as important news of the BIMSTEC countries.