Information on SAARC

SAARC: South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation
Established: 8th Dec 1985
Secretariat: Kathmandu 17 Jan 1987

SAARC Member States

Nepal
India
Bangladesh
Pakistan
Bhutan
Sri Lanka
Maldives
Afghanistan

SAARC Observers

Japan
Australia
China
Korea
Myanmar
America (United States)
Mauritius
Iran
European Union

Objectives of SAARC

The objectives of the Association as outlined in the SAARC Charter are:
  • to promote the welfare of the peoples of South Asia and to improve their quality of life;
  • to accelerate economic growth, social progress and cultural development in the region and to provide all individuals the opportunity to live in dignity and to realize their full potentials;
  • to promote and strengthen collective self-reliance among the countries of South Asia;
  • to contribute to mutual trust, understanding and appreciation of one another's problems;
  • to promote active collaboration and mutual assistance in the economic, social, cultural, technical and scientific fields;
  • to strengthen cooperation with other developing countries;
  • to strengthen cooperation among themselves in international forums on matters of common interests; and
  • to cooperate with international and regional organizations with similar aims and purposes.

SAARC area of cooperation

  1. Human Resource Development and Tourism
  2. Agriculture and Rural Development
  3. Environment, Natural Disasters and Biotechnology
  4. Economic, Trade and Finance
  5. Social Affairs
  6. Information and Poverty Alleviation
  7. Energy, Transport, Science and Technology
  8. Education, Security and Culture
Others (The idea of Meeting of SAARC Cabinet Secretaries was suggested by India in the year 2008 to discuss professional issues of common concern such as administrative reform, procedural simplifications and implementation of development programs relevant to SAARC Countries which was welcomed by the Member States.)

SAARC Summit

Summits are usually held biennially hosted by a Member State in alphabetical order.
  1. Dhaka Bangladesh: 7-8 December 1985
  2. Bangalore India: 16-17 November 1986
  3. Kathmandu Nepal: 2-4 November 1987
  4. Islamabad Pakistan: 29-31 December 1988
  5. Male' Maldives: 21-23 November 1990
  6. Colombo Sri Lanka: 21 December 1991
  7. Dhaka Bangladesh: 10-11 April 1993
  8. New Delhi India: 2-4 May 1995
  9. Male' Maldives: 12-14 May 1997
  10. Colombo Sri Lanka: 29-31 July 1998
  11. Kathmandu Nepal: 4-6 January 2002
  12. Islamabad Pakistan: 2-6 January 2004
  13. Dhaka Bangladesh: 12-13 November 2005
  14. New Delhi India: 3-4 April 2007
  15. Colombo Sri Lanka: 1-3 August 2008
  16. Thimpu Bhutan: 28-29 April 2010
  17. Addu Atol Maldives: 10-11 November 2011
  18. Kathmandu Nepal: 26-27 November 2014

First to sign in SAARC Charter

  1. Hussain Muhammad Ershad (Bangladesh)
  2. Jigme Singye Wangchuck (Bhutan)
  3. Rajiv Gandhi (India)
  4. Maumoon Abdul Gayoom (Maldives)
  5. Birendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev (Nepal)
  6. Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq (Pakistan)
  7. Junius Richard Jayewardene (Sri Lanka)
Information on SAARC
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