Government of India has invited the leaders of the BIMSTEC Member Countries to attend the swearing-in ceremony of Prime Minister Narendra Modi on May 30, 2019.
The BIMSTEC, or the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation, member states are Bangladesh, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Nepal, Bhutan and India.
The External Affairs Ministry has also sent the invitations to the President of Kyrgyzstan Sooronbay Jeenbekov, who is the current Chair of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and to Mauritius Prime Minister Pravind Jugnauth,who was the Chief Guest at this year’s 2019 Pravasi Bhartiya Divas.
These invitations were in line with the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government’s focus on the ‘Neighbourhood First’ policy. The move holds diplomatic significance as it majorly outreaches India’s neighbourhood, engrossing Indian diaspora across the world.
The invitation to SCO Chair Sooronbay Jeenbekov signifies India’s outreach to the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), which has Pakistan, China, Russia, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, and Tajikistan as its members.
According to the statement issued on Sunday, President Ram Nath Kovind will administer the oath of office and secrecy to the Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other members of the Union council of ministers at 7pm on May 30, 2019, at Rashtrapati Bhavan, New Delhi.
The Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) was founded in 1997.It is an international regional organisation of seven nations of South Asia and South East Asia.The BIMSTEC member countries are Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Bhutan, and Nepal. All these seven countries lie near the Bay of Bengal. The first BIMSTEC summit was held in Thailand in 1997, second was held in 2008 in India, the third was held in 2014 in Myanmar and the fourth was held in 2018 in Nepal.Sri Lanka is the current Chair of the BIMSTEC.