South Asia to set up food bank
South and Southeast Asian countries agreed yesterday to create a food
bank to combat shortages following natural disasters, a senior official
Bangladesh, which made the proposal at a two-day meeting of ministers
and senior officials on easing poverty, was asked to come up with
details at the next ministerial meeting in Kathmandu, Nepal, early next
"All the member countries of the Bay of Bengal 1 Initiative for
Multi-Sectoral Technical Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC), unanimously
agreed to create the food bank soon," Mirza Azizul Islam, Bangladesh
adviser (minister) for finance and planning told a news conference.
Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Thailand are
members of the BIMSTEC.
"The member countries may contribute in kind or cash equally or
according to their strength in the proposed food bank," a senior
official said. "But the modalities will be fixed in the next ministerial
meeting early 2009," Azizul said.