November 20-21, Thimphu: A country consultation meeting was organised between Bhutan and ICIMOD at Hotel Le Meridian. More than thirty participants including the policy makers, experts on sustainable mountain development, civil society organisations and private sectors gathered to discuss priorities required for ICIMOD support in the Mid Term Action Plan IV (MATP IV). It also provided a forum to review and strengthen the existing partnerships and identify potential partners for the future.
The Hon’ble Lyonpo for Agriculture and Forests, Yeshey Dorji graced the inaugural session as the Chief Guest. Also present were Lyonpo Kinzang Dorji, Dasho Rinzin Dorji, the Secretary for Agriculture and Forests and Dr. David Molden, ICIMOD Director General along with other senior officials from Bhutan and ICIMOD.
Lyonpo Yeshey Dorji in his address informed that MTAP-IV is of particular interest for Bhutan, as we are in the process of prioritising the 12th FYP plan based on the country’s emerging issues and challenges. He shared that some of the important issues in terms of poverty, natural disasters and unemployment would serve as consultation inputs for Bhutan and ICIMOD.
The key reflection from the ongoing partnership with ICIMOD in the fields of adaptation to change, transboundary landscape, study of cryosphere, meteorology and water resource, geospatial solution application, improving ecosystem management, Himalayan university consortium and river basin were also discussed and is expected to go a long way in contributing to meet the objectives of Bhutan’s 12th FYP.
According to Dasho Rinzin Dorji, who represents Bhutan in the ICIMOD Board of Governors, “Bhutan-ICIMOD country consultation” is one of the landmark events for both parties. He shared that the meeting has come up with some important inputs that are of high relevance not only to Bhutan but also at the regional level.
ICIMOD has been conducting country consultations to integrate key national priorities and regional concerns in preparation of the MTAP IV which will run from January 2018 through 2022. The document will eventually be presented in a regional forum for further refinement and synthesis.
The Royal Government of Bhutan is a founding member of ICIMOD along with seven other member countries. It contributes to ICIMOD’s core support fund and has its Ministry of Agriculture and Forests as the focal agency. Both parties work together on mountain agendas in the Hindu Kush Himalaya region.
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