English | Dzongkha Thursday, November 23, 2017

Fifth BIMSTEC meeting discusses food security

Kinley Yangden & Sonam Choden, Thimphu
Dec 29, 2016

During the Fifth meeting of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) held in Thimphu, food security was the focal point of discussion.

BIMSTEC member countries discussed how to achieve food security for the growing population in the Asian region. Challenges confronted to meet food security were also highlighted at the meeting which ended today.

The member countries are Bhutan, Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Sri-Lanka, Thailand, and Myanmar and all of them are primarily agrarian economies.

The Agriculture Minister, Yeshey Dorji said the government has given key importance to agriculture development in the current Five Year Plan. However like other member countries, Bhutan also faces several challenges to achieve food security. The challenges include: water crunch, labour shortage, inadequate cultivable land, and human-wildlife conflicts among others.

“To overcome water scarcity, we are going to construct new irrigation channels and also renovate the defunct ones and encourage farmers to lease land from those who are not cultivating the land,” said the agriculture department’s Director, Kinlay Tshering.

Bhutan has prepared a concept note on promotion of agricultural trade and investment among the BIMSTEC member countries and its workshop will take place in November, 2017.

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