The Eleventh Informal Meeting of SAARC Finance Ministers was held in Yokohama, Japan, on 5 May 2017 on the sidelines of the 50th Annual Meeting of Asian Development Bank being held on 4-7 May 2017. The Meeting attended by the Hon’ble Finance Ministers/Heads of Delegations from all SAARC Member State was held under the Chairmanship of Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister of Nepal, Hon’ble Krishna Bahadur Mahara.
In his opening statement, Hon’ble Mahara thanked ADB for its continuous support and for making excellent arrangements for the Meeting. He congratulated ADB on its Fiftieth Anniversary. Secretary General of SAARC H.E. Mr. Amjad Hussain B. Sial thanked ADB for its continued support to SAARC in its journey towards regional economic integration, leading to South Asian Economic Union, since the signing of SAARC-ADB MoU in 2004 and hoped that ADB would continue to support SAARC in future as well.
During the Open Session of the Meeting, Mr. Wencai Zhang, Vice President of Asian Development Bank briefed the Meeting about the projects undertaken by ADB in the 50 years of its existence. He stated that ADB has a long and productive partnership with SAARC countries. He informed the Meeting that as of end 2016, ADB’s cumulative assistance to the sub-region totaled $ 108.6 billion, amounting to more than 40% of ADB’s financing operations. All Finance Ministers/Heads of Delegations briefed the Meeting about the current status of economic progress achieved by them, appreciated the contribution made by ADB in their economic growth and hoped that SAARC would make further progress to achieve its full potential for the benefit of peoples of the region.