The Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation, or BIMSTEC, groups together Bangladesh, Bhutan, Burma, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Thailand. The seven-country forum aims to achieve its own free trade area by 2017.

last update: May 2012


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  • 13-Jan-2015 BD News 24 2015 can be a ‘game-changer’ for BIMSTEC
    Bangladesh hopes that the much-expected BIMSTEC FTA (between Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Thailand) will be finalised this year.
  • 7-Mar-2014 DNA Failure to launch
    Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation’s lack of concrete achievement points to the need for greater political will and clarity of purpose
  • 4-Mar-2014 Let us seal FTA early, Prime Minister tells regional club
    Urging the seven-member BIMSTEC grouping to fast-track trade and economic cooperation, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Tuesday called for “early conclusion” of the BIMSTEC Free Trade Agreement and said it should be extended to investment and services.
  • 4-Mar-2014 PTI BIMSTEC leaders today resolved to expeditiously
    BIMSTEC leaders today resolved to expeditiously conclude an agreement on trade in goods to promote commerce among member nations India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Myanmar, Bhutan and Nepal.
  • 7-May-2013 Call to boost NE-SE Asia links
    The long forgotten traditional links including the historic Stilwell Road connecting the North-east and the neighbouring countries have emerged as critical to connecting South Asia and Southeast Asia.
  • 8-Mar-2011 BIMSTEC free trade area from July next year
    The BIMSTEC member countries have decided to establish a free trade area (FTA) for transaction in goods from July next year. If established, the FTA would be two years behind its original deadline, trade official said.
  • 25-Feb-2011 PTI Thailand to push for FTA with Bimstec members by July
    Thailand today said it will push for the conclusion of a free trade agreement with India and other members of Bimstec by July, enabling tariff reduction next year.
  • 8-Jun-2009 ToI India seals free-trade pact with Thailand
    India took its trade diplomacy up several notches with negotiators wrapping up a free trade deal in goods with other BIMSTEC countries, ie. Thailand, Myanmar, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Bhutan and Nepal.
  • 13-Nov-2008 Manmohan pitches for early conclusion of BIMSTEC trade pact
    Pitching for early conclusion of the BIMSTEC Free Trade Agreement, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Thursday said countries in Asia should give a new strategic thrust to the cooperation in the backdrop of global financial crisis.
  • 13-Nov-2008 Bimstec Free Trade Agreement on anvil
    A Free Trade Agreement (FTA) amongst Bimstec region is in the pipeline, according to Mr Yogendra Kumar, additional secretary, ministry of external affairs.
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    Bangladesh-India-Myanmar-Sri Lanka-Thailand Economic Cooperation (also includes Nepal and Bhutan)