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SAARC its Objectives, Principles and Programme of Action.

SAARC;
The South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) is an economic and political organization of eight countries in Southern Asia. It was established on December 8, 1985 by Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, India and Sri Lanka. In April 2007, at the Association's 14th summit, Afghanistan became its eighth member. The First SAARC Summit was held in Dhaka on 7th December, 1985 where the charter formally established the SAARC. The Potential areas of was namely; 1. Agriculture 2. Rural Development 3. Meteorology 4. Telecommunication 5. Technological 6. Transport 7. Postal service 8. Health activites

OBJECTIVES OF ESTABLISHING SAARC;


a) To promote the welfare of the peoples of SOUTH ASIA and to improve their quality of life. b) 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. c) To promote and strengthen collective self-reliance among the countries of SOUTH ASIA d) To contribute to mutual trust, understanding and appreciation of one another's problems. e) To promote active collaboration and mutual assistance in the economic, social, cultural, technical and scientific fields. f) To strengthen cooperation with other developing countries. g) To strengthen cooperation among themselves in international forums on matters of common interests. h) To cooperate with international and regional organizations with similar aims and purposes

PRINCIPLES GOVERNING SAARC;


1. Cooperation within the framework of the ASSOCIATION shall be based on respect for the principles of sovereign equality, territorial integrity, political independence, non-interference in the internal affairs of other States and mutual benefit. 2. Such cooperation shall not be a substitute for bilateral and multilateral cooperation but shall complement them. 3. Such cooperation shall not be inconsistent with bilateral and multilateral obligations. 4. Non-interference in the internal matters. 5. To take any decision 1/3rd of the member should agree upon the joint decision.

PROGRAMME OF ACTION; Poverty Eradication;


The 6th SAARC Summit (Colombo, 1991) for the first time accorded the highest priority to the alleviation of poverty in South Asia and established an Independent South Asian Commission on Poverty Alleviation (ISACPA), including eminent persons from member states. The commission conducted an indepth study of the diverse experiences of member states and reported their recommendations on the alleviation of poverty to the 7th Summit. The 1992 Commission on Poverty Alleviation set rather formidable macroeconomic targets for the eradication of poverty in South Asia by 2002 (SAARC Secretariat 1992). The Commission provided a radical conceptual framework for poverty alleviation through social mobilization and empowerment in South Asia. To achieve this goal, it recommended that the region would require the following: An annual growth rate of 9.1 percent. Doubling of per capita income from US$300 to US$600. Lowering of incremental capital-output ratio from 4:1 to 3:1. Increasing the marginal savings rate from the current level to 27 percent or more.

Suppression of Terrorism
The Standing Committee at its Twenty Eighth Session (Kathmandu, 19-20 August 2002) recommended that Legal Advisers of SAARC Member States prepare a draft of an Additional Protocol to the SAARC Convention on the Suppression of Terrorism. This is in recognition of the need to update the Convention on account of the obligations devolving on Member States in terms of UN Security Council Resolution 1373 (2001) and the International Convention for Suppression of Financing of Terrorism. Given the priority accorded by the SAARC Heads of State/Government at the Eleventh Summit to global initiatives to combat terrorism and organized criminal activities, the Standing Committee recommended that a Ministerial level meeting be convened to deal with the issues. The SAARC Council of Ministers at their Twenty-Third Session, (Kathmandu, 21-22 August 2002) endorsed the Standing Committees

recommendations to mandate the Senior Officials assisted by Legal Experts of SAARC Member States to prepare an Additional Protocol to the SAARC Regional Convention on Suppression of Terrorism, recognizing the importance of updating the Convention in order to meet obligations devolving on Member States in terms of Security Council Resolution 1373 (2001) and the international Convention for Suppression of Financing of Terrorism. The Council of Ministers called for the convening of a Ministerial Meeting to discuss these issues, following careful preparation, including its agenda, through intergovernmental consultations.

Trade and Economic Co-operations;


As a step towards liberalization among SAARC member states a SAARC Preferential Trading Arrangements (SAPTA) was signed by the council of ministers of Dhaka on 11 April 1993 during the seventh SAARC Summit.