The First ‘BIMSTEC Disaster Management Exercise – 2017’ (BIMSTEC DMEx-2017) will be conducted by the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) as the lead agency from October 10-13 in Delhi and the National Capital Region (NCR). This Exercise will be a platform for sharing Best Practices on all aspects of Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR), strengthening regional response and coordination for disaster management among the BIMSTEC member countries.
Delegates from all seven nations of the ‘Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation’ (BIMSTEC) grouping, – namely Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Thailand, representatives from Embassies/ High Commissions of BIMSTEC nations in Delhi, National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), and senior officers from the nodal ministries will be participating in the event.
At the 17th BIMSTEC senior officials meeting held in Kathmandu, Nepal on 7 February 2017, it was decided that India would organise the first annual disaster management exercise for the region.
The main focus of the BIMSTEC DMEx-2017 will be on testing the region’s preparedness and resilience towards effective activation of inter-Governmental interaction/ dialogue/ agreements for immediate deployment of regional resources for disaster response. It will help create synergy and synchronise efforts to institutionalise regional cooperation among the member countries. The exercise will help strengthen the effective utilisation of the search and rescue teams for disaster relief and emergency response, including emergency rapid assessment teams and management of mass casualties especially in situations involving breakdown of infrastructure and communication.
At the end of the four-day Exercise, a publication will be brought out on the outcomes and recommendations of the Joint/ Common Exercise and include Agreement among BIMSTEC nations on regional cooperation for disaster management and emergency response. This would be presented to the BIMSTEC leaders at the summit to be hosted by Nepal in October/ November 2017.