Seven members of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) in the south and southeast Asia have agreed to set up an energy centre in India to develop energy grid interconnection, infrastructure and energy efficiency.

The decision was made at the second BIMSTEC Ministers of Energy’s Meeting in Bangkok, Thailand on March 5.

Opening the event, Thailand’s Minister on Energy Wannarat Channukul, who was also the chairman of the meeting, said that the focus on new and renewable energy can present BIMSTEC’s members with good opportunities and benefits through stimulating and supporting of project implementation, advanced clean technology research and transfer, information sharing in such renewable energies as biomass, biogas, biofuels, wind, solar and hydro.

The Thai Minister expressed his optimism at the cooperation dialogue among BIMSTEC members and agreed to hold the meeting every two years, which Napal hosts the next one in 2012 while the BIMSTEC senior officials on energy's meeting will be organised annually to encourage the cooperation of the members.

With seven member countries, including Thailand, Myanmar, Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, the organisation aims to build up social sustainability and economic growth in the region, based on equity and promote mutual benefits on economic, social and technology.

Besides, BIMSTEC also supports its members on training, research as well as closely strengthened collaboration for the advantages in agriculture, industry, trade, investment, communication and transportation to improve people’s living standards.

The first BIMSTEC Ministers on Energy's Meeting was held on October, 2005 in New Delhi, India./.