Official group picture of the 77th Executive Council Meeting and 23rd General Assembly, 2 May, Chandragiri Hills, Kathmandu, Nepal
SAARC CCI and FCCISL President Ruwan Edirisinghe hands over a token of appreciation to Nepal Prime Minister Khadga Prasad Sharma Oli
The 77th Executive Committee (EC) Meeting and 23rd General Assembly (GA) Meeting of SAARC Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCI) were successfully held on 2 May at Chandragiri Hills, Kathmandu, Nepal. The meetings were organised by the SAARC CCI in collaboration with Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FNCCI).
The 77th EC and 23rd GA Meetings were chaired by SAARC CCI President Ruwan Edirisinghe. The EC and GA members from South Asian countries gathered in Nepal to take significant decisions in terms of taking SAARC CCI into new heights. Eminent business leaders from Afghanistan, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka actively took part at the meetings scheduled in Kathmandu from 2 to 4 May.
Nepal Federal Parliament House of Representatives Speaker Krishna Bahadur Mahara was invited as the chief guest at the inaugural session of 77th EC and 23rd GA Meetings of SAARC CCI.
Ruwan Edirisinghe advocated that the main aim of the organisation is to improve intra-trade in the SAARC region, connectivity and socioeconomic cooperation for the benefit of people in South Asia. He emphasised: “We are a private sector organisation and all of us should understand that we represent private sector, so that we should not go behind political agendas which give numerous drawbacks to our organisation. Our duty is to represent SAARC countries for the benefit of economic integration and to sustain the economic growth in the region.”
Along with the 77th EC and 23rd GA Meetings, the SAARC CCI in collaboration with the FNCCI organised four important meetings i.e. the meeting with Nepal Prime Minister Khadga Prasad Sharma Oli, meeting with the Nepal Foreign Affairs Minister Pradeep Gyawali, SAARC Startups Task Force Presentation, and the Strategy Workshop of SAARC CCI.
Edirisinghe led a delegation to call on Sharma Oli on 3 May at the Prime Minister’s Residence Baluwatar, Kathmandu, Nepal. Edirisinghe, in his keynote remarks, mentioned that “Asia is going to be the economic power house in the world in the next decade and South Asia is an integral part of Asia having one of the world’s highest GDP growth rate of 6.5% on average in the SAARC region. The region is significantly rich with untapped natural resources. “Moreover, South Asia is a youthful region having a young population of over 52% with good education and technological backgrounds. With a higher working class and economic potentials in the region, we are fully committed in ensuring the sustainable development of the region and we at the SAARC CCI are having a long term target of becoming one of the strongest chambers in the world by 2030 and we make sure that our future leadership will reach this target collectively.”
The Prime Minister, during his address, mentioned that: “We are not eight nations in SAARC, in fact we are a one family.” He further added that “South Asian region is the mother of civilised society, it is the mother of discipline and philosophy, the region is prosperous with natural resources and becoming the best in the world is not a difficult task”. He finally conveyed his best wishes for “a prosperous SAARC and happy people”.