Bangladesh called upon her fellow SAARC member states to work together to strengthen regional cooperation leveraging the SAARC mechanism to fight against the challenges posed by Covid-19.
Foreign Minister A K Abdul Momen made the call during the 17th Informal Meeting of Council of Ministers (COM), virtually held on Thursday as a side-line event of the 75th Session of the UN General Assembly, read a foreign ministry statement on Friday.
In his address, the Foreign Minister reiterated the proposal made by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at the video conference of the SAARC leaders held in March this year to establish a SAARC Public Health Research Institute in Dhaka to study and find out solutions to Covid-19 as well as future similar public health threats with the support of all member states of SAARC.
On the occasion of the celebration of the birth centenary of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman this year, he reaffirmed Bangladesh’s strong commitment to strengthen SAARC Forum as a common platform in South Asia for its effective regional cooperation.
Nepal Foreign Minister Mr Pradeep Kumar Gyawali presided over the COM, where all the foreign ministers from the SAARC member states were present.
During this year’s conference, the foreign ministers of SAARC member states reviewed the regional efforts in combating Covid-19 and put emphasis on further strengthening regional cooperation in the wake of the pandemic.
With a view to revitalising SAARC, Bangladesh Foreign Minister Momen underscored the need for revisiting the entire plan of action of the SAARC system for its effective implementation.
He said Covid-19 would unfold many new opportunities along with new areas of cooperation.