Bangladesh Online Research Network report on ORF’s water security report, 2011

Bangladesh, 2011
Link to original website

Water Security in South Asia: Issues and Policy Recommendations
This brief is largely based on several discussions organised at Observer Research Foundation over a period of time. These discussions were enriched by the presence of some of the well-known experts on water issues in the country, like former Union Minister for Water Resources, Dr. Suresh Prabhu, current High Commissioner of Bangladesh, Tariq Ahmad Karim, Mr. Sunjoy Joshi, Director, Observer Research Foundation, Ms. Clare Shakya, Senior Regional Climate Change and Water Adviser, DFID*, India, Mr. Samir Saran, Vice President, ORF and Dr. Dinesh Kumar, Executive Director, Institute for Resource Analysis and Policy, Hyderabad.

It is estimated that by 2030, only 60 per cent of the world’s population will have access to fresh water 1 supplies . This would mean that about 40 per cent of the world population or about 3 billion-people would be without a reliable source of water and most of them would live in impoverished, conflictprone and water-stressed areas like South Asia.

Water is already an extremely contentious, and volatile, issue in South Asia. There are more people in the region than ever before and their dependence on water for various needs continues to multiply by leaps and bounds. The quantum of water available, for the present as well as future, has reduced dramatically, particularly in the last half-acentury. This is due to water-fertiliser intensive farming, overexploitation of groundwater for drinking, industrial and agricultural purposes, large scale contamination of water sources, total inertia in controlling and channelising waste water, indifferent approach to water conservation programmes and populist policies on water consumption. SOURCE: Observer Research Foundation covers ORF report launch on non-traditional security

Latin American countries keen to strengthen relations with India 
April 16, 2011
Link to website  

Participating in an interaction at Observer Research Foundation, envoys from 17 countries from Latin America said their countries are keen to strengthen economic relations with India. “We want better, mutually beneficial relations with India. We have got lots of natural resources, especially oil and other energy resources. But we don’t want to be just provider of resources. We want you to cooperate in our development also,” said Columbian Ambassador Juan Alfredo Pinto Saavedra.

Saavedra, the coordinator of the group of Ambassadors of the Latin American countries, said the US and the Europe used resources from their countries for their development, but did not help them in the development. “While they used our resources, we remained poor,” he said. He wanted India and China to be different in their approach to Latin American countries.

Besides the Columbian Ambassador, Ambassadors from Paraguay, Uruguay, Panama, Costo Rica, Mexico, Peru, Cuba, Dominican Republic attended the interaction. The other countries were represented by high level diplomats like Deputy Chief the Missions and Charge d’ Affaires.

The Ambassadors were given a presentation on the ORF Report on India’s non-traditional security threats, titled “Navigating the Near” by Samir Saran, Vice President, Observer Research Foundation. This study was done by ORF for the Integrated Defence Staff, the Ministry of Defence.

Chairing the meeting, M. Rasgotra, a former Foreign Secretary and now President of the ORF Centre for International Relations, said Latin American countries enjoyed good sentiments in India. He said India would be keen to have mutually beneficial cooperation with them. Former Foreign Secretary K. Raghunath and ORF Director Sunjoy Joshi also took part in the meeting.