Sri Lanka to serve as chair, India will be vice-chair of IORA

The 23rd Council of Ministers (COM) Meeting of the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) is taking place in Colombo today.

Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen is representing Bangladesh at the meeting, under the theme "Strengthening Regional Architecture: Reinforcing Indian Ocean Identity.

The government of Sri Lanka, the incoming IORA Chair, is hosting the meeting.

The ministers' meeting was preceded by the 24th Committee of Senior Officials (CSO) Meeting on October 9, 10.

The Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Senior Government Officials of IORA's 23 member states will take stock of the progress that the association has made, since the last meeting in Bangladesh, and to discuss the future initiatives of this region.

IORA's 11 dialogue partners, specialized agencies and observers are also joining in the meeting.

This October's meeting will mark the handover of IORA chairship from the People's Republic of Bangladesh, which took over the chairship in 2021, to the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka.

Sri Lanka will serve as chair for a period of two years (2023-2025), while India will become the vice-chair of the association.

Bangladesh will remain part of the IORA Troika for the period, which will be constituted as follows: Sri Lanka (Chair), India (Vice-Chair) and Bangladesh (Past-Chair).

The IORA Council of Ministers Meeting (COM) is an annual meeting where foreign ministers from IORA member states meet to discuss and decide over IORA priorities.

In consonance, the CSO, consisting of senior officials of Foreign Affairs, meets twice per year, and decisions taken by the Committee are then reported to the COM for final adoption.

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