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Despite depressive economic situation of the country, Pakistan repaid $417 million first installment to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) from foreign currency reserves held by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP).Pakistan will repay its obtain $7.6 billion to the IMF till the end of fiscal year 2014-15.


India has said it will take proactive measures to reduce barriers in trade and services to ensure greater economic integration in the South Asian region and would substantially reduce tariff barriers for the countries like Pakistan and Sri Lanka(as it has done for the least developed countries like Bangladesh, Nepal and Bhutan).


Surging capital inflows, booming stock markets and a fast-appreciating currency suggest the India story is again shining after a dismal 2011.Dig a little deeper, and problems afflicting Asia's third-largest economy remain largely unabated and unaddressed.


The secretary-level meeting this time has recommended establishing a regional development bank and a fund where the members and donors will contribute. The finance secretaries also forwarded a proposal for promotion and protection of investment among the Saarc members.


About 55 per cent of the total potential for intra-regional trade in South Asia has not been fully exploited.Despite huge natural resources and mineral deposits, the state of intra region trade in South Asia was dismal.



According to UNCTAD’s Global Investment Trends Monitor, South-East Asia continued to outperform East Asia in growth of FDI, while South Asia saw its inflow rise by one-third after a slide in 2010. 


Veteran journalist and former diplomat Kuldip Nayar  backed the emerging idea for the formation of a South Asian Economic Union with “soft borders” among the nations and free movement of people to promote understanding and cooperation and unite the people across the boundaries.      

Bangladesh has been given the 130th place among the 184 countries rated as the freest to carry out business in.So far as South Asian nations are concerned, Bangladesh with its score point at 53.2 is trailing behind Sri Lanka (58.3), Bhutan (56.6), Pakistan (54.7), and India (54.6).


Moving past the global economic powerhouses like the UK, Germany and France, the Indian economy would become the world's fifth largest by 2020 – a major jump from its 10th rank currently, a report has said. As per the CEBR forecast, India would be followed by Brazil (6th), Germany (7th), UK (8th), France (9th) and Italy (10th) in the top-ten league.As per the report, CEBR's chief Douglas McWilliams told BBC Radio 4 that Brazil overtaking the UK was part of a growing trend.


Poverty affects 40 percent of people in Bangladesh, and malnutrition is among the highest in the world, with 56 percent of preschoolers underweight. In an effort to combat these alarming numbers, the International Potato Center (CIP) is launching a new program in disaster-prone southern Bangladesh to raise incomes and improve nutritional health through potato, sweetpotato, and vegetables.  


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spotlight image Since Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina assumed office again in Bangladesh in 2009, bilateral relations between New Delhi and Dhaka have been on a steady upward trajectory.
Senior representatives from the US, China, Pakistan and Afghanistan met in Muscat, Oman, on Monday to revive stalled peace talks with the Taliban, but the insurgent group failed to participate in the meeting being held after a year.
Ruskin Bond’s first novel ‘Room on the Roof’ describes in vivid detail how life in the hills around Dehradun used to be. Bond, who is based in Landour, Mussoorie, since 1963, captured the imagination of countless readers as he painted a picture of an era gone by.
India’s foreign policy under Prime Minister Narendra Modi has attained a level of maturity which allows it to assert itself in an effective manner. This is aimed at protecting the country’s national interests in a sustained way.
Braid-chopping incidents have added to the already piled up anxieties of Kashmiris. Once again they are out on the streets, to give vent to their anger. A few persons, believed to be braid-choppers were caught hold by irate mobs at various places. They were beaten to pulp.
Communist parties everywhere gather the ranks every five years to review the past, set future direction, renew political leadership and rejig organisational structure.
In a move lauded worldwide, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud recently issued a royal decree allowing women to obtain driving licences.
The death toll from Saturday’s twin truck bombs in Somalia’s capital Mogadishu has crossed 300.
On “Defining Our Relationship with India for the Next Century”

Title: The People Next Door -The Curious History of India-Pakistan Relations; Author: T.C.A. Raghavan; Publisher: HarperCollins ; Pages: 361; Price: Rs 699


Could the North Korean nuclear issue which is giving the world an anxious time due to presence of hotheads on each side, the invasion of Iraq and its toxic fallout, and above all, the arms race in the teeming but impoverished South Asian subcon...


Title: A Bonsai Tree; Author: Narendra Luther; Publisher: Niyogi Books; Pages: 227 Many books have been written on India's partition but here is a firsthand account of the horror by a migrant from what is now Pakistan, who ...


As talk of war and violence -- all that Mahatma Gandhi stood against -- gains prominence across the world, a Gandhian scholar has urged that the teachings of the apostle of non-violence be taken to the classroom.


Interview with Hudson Institute’s Aparna Pande, whose book From Chanakya to Modi: Evolution of India’s Foreign Policy, was released on June 17.

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