The Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) is a regional organization that was established on 06 June 1997. Initially known as BIST-EC (Bangladesh-India-SriLanka-Thailand Economic Cooperation), the organization is now known as BIMSTEC and comprises seven Member States with the admission of Myanmar on 22 December 1997, and Bhutan and Nepal in February 2004. The Member States of BIMSTEC are the People’s Republic of Bangladesh, the Kingdom of Bhutan, the Republic of India, the Republic of the Union of Myanmar, Nepal, the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, and the Kingdom of Thailand. One of the main purposes of BIMSTEC is to accelerate the economic growth and social progress in the Bay of Bengal region by promoting active collaboration in economic, social, technical and scientific fields.
The cooperation within BIMSTEC focuses on various sectors and subsectors led by different member countries. The details are available at https://bimstec.org/bimstec-history/. India is leading the sector “Security” which includes the sub-sectors: Counter-Terrorism and Transnational Crime, Disaster Management and Energy. BIMSTEC Centre for Weather and Climate (BCWC) is under the sub-sector “Disaster Management”.
The Memorandum of Association (MoA) was signed on 04 March 2014 for establishment of BCWC at National Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasting. The objectives of BCWC are:
BCWC is also a very important component of the umbrella scheme entitled “Research, Education, Training and Outreach (REACHOUT)” of Ministry of Earth Sciences, Government of India. It is involved in several activities to strengthen the cooperation and collaboration with member nations in disaster management and risk reduction. It organizes annual workshops and training programs for the capacity building in BIMSTEC member countries. It shares various model forecast products (both deterministic and probabilistic) on real time with BIMSTEC member nations. In addition, BCWC holds weekly online discussions on the model based forecast outlook at which the scientists of Hydromet departments of the member countries participate. BCWC scientists are actively involved in weather and climate research in collaboration with scientists of BIMSTEC member countries.
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