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1) Although BIMSTEC has made several significant strides recently, it still faces a number of challenges undermining its potential. Analyze.(250 words)

Topic: Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests

1) Although BIMSTEC has made several significant strides recently, it still faces a number of challenges undermining its potential. Analyze.(250 words)

The hindu

The hindu

Why this question

BIMSTEC is an important regional organisation of which India is a prime member. The organisation was started 19 years ago but it has not been able to work at the desired levels and faces several challenges limiting its potential. The organisation has recently taken many measures which will strengthen and revitalise the organisation.

Directive word

Analyze-Here we  have to examine methodically the structure or nature of the topic by separating it into component parts, and present them as a whole in a summary.

Key demand of the question.

The question wants us to delve deep into the issue and identify and discuss upon the recent strides made by the BIMSTEC. We also have to deliberate upon the challenges faced by the organisation.

Structure of the answer

Introduction– write a few introductory lines about BIMSTEC- when was it founded, who are the members etc.

Body-

  • Discuss the steps/ measures taken recently by the BIMSTEC. E.g the  work begins now on drafting a charter for BIMSTEC, which has functioned so far on the basis of the Bangkok Declaration of 1997, and outcomes of the past three summits and the Leaders’ Retreat in 2016; Permanent Working Committee will be set up to provide direction during the period between two summits and also to prepare the Rules of Procedure; the Secretariat has been promised additional financial and human resources and enhancement of its role to coordinate, monitor and facilitate the group’s activities; the leaders took the bold decision to establish the BIMSTEC Development Fund; recognising that 16 areas of cooperation represent too wide a spectrum, the BIMSTEC governments will make a serious endeavour to review, restructure and rationalise various sectors, identifying a few core areas etc.
  • Discuss the challenges faced by the organisation limiting its potential. E.g no regular summits; Myanmar and Thailand more inclined towards ASEAN; Motor Vehicle Agreement and the Coastal Shipping Agreement would still need more time for finalisation; concerns that India as a unproportionately large member assuming primacy and hegemony in the group; lack of funds etc.

Conclusion– Based on your discussion, form a fair and a balanced conclusion on the given issue.