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17th Ministerial Meeting of the Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD)

The 17th Ministerial Meeting of the Asia Cooperation Dialogue was held virtually on 21 January 2021. Hon’ble Foreign Minister, Lyonpo (Dr.) Tandi Dorji led the Bhutanese delegation to the meeting.

Lyonpo in his statement stressed the urgency of enhancing regional cooperation in sharing information and exchange of best practices to support the recovery of the tourism sector in the new normal. Lyonpo also emphasized on the need for stronger collaboration among the member countries in the development and fair distribution of safe and effective vaccines and ensure their easy availability at affordable rates to help members overcome the COVID -19 pandemic. 

The meeting was hosted by the Republic of Turkey, the current chair of the ACD, under the theme “The New Normal and Safe and Healthy Tourism”

The Ankara Declaration was adopted at the end of the 17th Ministerial Meeting. The Meeting also delegated the Senior Officials to finalize the Guiding Principles for the Functioning of the ACD Secretariat; initiate discussions on the ACD’s General Rules of Procedure and prepare the ACD Blueprint 2021-2030.

The Bhutan Chamber of Commerce (BCCI) also participated in the first virtual Conference of Chambers of Commerce and Industry of ACD member countries hosted by the Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB) on 21 January 2021, as a side event of the Ministerial Meeting. The Conference discussed avenues to improve connectivity, trade relations, cross border harmonization and private sector’s role in economic recovery post COVID pandemic. The president of BCCI, Ms. Phub Zam attended the conference.

The Asia Cooperation Dialogue was established in 2002 and has 35 member countries. Bhutan joined ACD in 2004.

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