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Roundtable Meetings on Innovations amongst Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) countries & Inauguration VKP and Meeting of the 24x7 PoC of the East Asia Summit (EAS) countries

December 05, 2014

A two-day event entitled "Roundtable Meetings on Innovations in Technologies for Disaster Rescue Efforts amongst Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) countries & Inauguration of the Virtual Knowledge Portal (VKP) and Meeting of the 24x7 Points of Contact (PoC) of the East Asia Summit (EAS) countries” was organised jointly by the Ministry of Home Affairs and the Ministry of External Affairs on 4-5 December 2014 at Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi.

Roundtable Meetings The event was inaugurated by the Hon’ble Minister of State for Home Affairs, Shri Haribhai Parthibhai Chaudhary on 4th December 2014 at 9:30 hrs at Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi. Shri Anil Wadha, Secretary (East), Ministry of External Affairs, Smt. Sneh Lata Kumar, Secretary (Border Management), Ministry of Home Affairs and Dr. Arbind Prasad, Director General, Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry graced the inaugural session.

Over 360 delegates participated in the meetings, including delegates from 28 members of ASEM (representatives from 26 countries, the European Union (EU) and the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) Secretariat). 9 East Asia Summit (EAS) members participated.

Roundtable Meetings10 International and Regional Organizations, notably the Asian Disaster Preparedness Center (ADPC), United Nations Platform for Space-based Information for Disaster Management and Emergency Response (UN-SPIDER), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), United Nations Childrens Fund (UNICEF), United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP), South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Disaster Management Centre and the European Union Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection Department (ECHO) also took part in these meetings, along with a large number of officials & experts from various Central Ministries, Armed Forces, State Governments and Technical Organizations within India.

The Virtual Knowledge Portal (VKP), a web based tool to share knowledge and best practices related to natural disaster risk assessment, mitigation and response among EAS countries was launched by the Hon’ble Minister of State (Home), Shri Haribhai Parthibhai Chaudhary during the inaugural session.

Roundtable MeetingsAn exhibition on "Technology for Disaster Management Efforts”, organised by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) was also inaugurated by Shri Parthibhai Chaudhary. More than 40 domestic and international industries participated in the exhibition.

Shri Kiren Rijiju, Hon’ble Minister of State (Home) interacted with the delegates over a welcome dinner hosted by Shri Anil Wadhwa, Secretary (East), Ministry of External Affairs, for the participants on 4 December, 2014.

The Roundtable discussions focussed on innovative technologies for disaster risk reduction and disaster rescue efforts amongst participating countries. An introduction was made on the broad structure and functioning of the VKP. It was decided to have further consultations on the VKP with EAS member countries. Opportunities to promote multilateral cooperation in the event of disasters, establishment of a mechanism for activating the 24x7 Point of Contacts of the EAS countries and exploring how innovations in technologies could be utilized to save lives and reduce the effective response time by Governments were important issues that were deliberated upon. It was agreed to explore the scope for further cooperation amongst ASEM and EAS countries for disaster management in the future.

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