This path-breaking report of RIS examined in great detail the potential of expanding mutually beneficial economic links among the SAARC nations after reviewing the trade and investment linkages that have evolved in the past. Specific areas of cooperation in trade, investment and technology transfer were identified for concrete action by the SAARC countries. It was suggested that the SAARC should move towards a customs union by gradually eliminating the tariff and non-tariff barriers and discriminatory practices in the region. The study emphasised the importance of coordination in the production activities among the member countries, so that greater complementarities in trade cooperation could be generated in due course of time. It recommended the formation of a Regional Council of Development Financing Institutions with a view to promoting regional projects. The study identified various constraints in the process of cooperation and suggest ways and means of reducing their impact. It is heartening to learn that many later action plans for economic cooperation in the SAARC region were the off-shoots of this pioneering RIS study.
Economic Cooperation in the SAARC Region:
Potential, Constraints and Policies
By V.R. Panchamukhi,
Nagesh Kumar, V.L. Rao,
I.N. Mukherji, S.K. Mohanty and
M. P. Lama, 1990