Leading socioeconomic experts and influential policy advisors of South Asian countries gather in Colombo today at the start of the 6th South Asia Economic Summit (SAES) kicking off at the Cinnamon Grand hotel.
The Summit organized by Sri Lanka’s apex economic policy think tank, the Institute of Policy Studies of Sri Lanka (IPS), will go on for 3 days, until the 4th of September. The SAES, inaugurated in 2008 in Colombo, is a premier platform to debate and discuss the socio-economic challenges faced by South Asia, currently one of the fastest growing regions in the world.
This year, under the theme ‘Towards a Stronger, Dynamic and Inclusive South Asia’, the Summit will bring together over 120 renowned socio-economic experts to debate and discuss the pressing concerns to sustainable and inclusive growth in the region during 4 plenary sessions, 12 parallel sessions, and 4 special events, over the course of the three days.
Sarath Amunugama, Senior Minister of International Monetary Cooperation and Deputy Minister of Finance and Planning will grace the inauguration as the Chief Guest, joined by Ahsan Iqbal Chowdhury, Federal Minister for Planning and Development of the Government of Pakistan who will deliver the keynote address.
Other influential personalities joining the Summit include Ahmed Saleem, Secretary General of SAARC, Dr. Gowher Rizvi, International Affairs Advisor to the Prime Minister of Bangladesh, Sham Bathija, Minister/Senior Advisor of Economic Affairs to the President of Afghanistan, and Dr. Martin Rama, World Bank’s Chief Economist for South Asia.
Today, the Summit kicks off with an Expert Panel Discussion on the topic ‘A Closer South Asia: Re-energizing Regional Economic Integration and Connectivity’ and will be followed by the first plenary session on ‘Harnessing Human Capital Potential’ and a Special Event on the ‘South Asian position for the 9th WTO Ministerial’.