India, Nepal and Bhutan, the three regional member countries of International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD), have agreed to work out on an initiative for a new trans-boundary landscape (Kanchenjunga) in the region.
Under the initiative, an area of some 16,000 km covering parts of eastern Nepal, Sikkim and northern parts of West Bengal in India, and western Bhutan will become part of the Kanchenjunga Landscape, one of the seven trans-boundary areas identified by ICIMOD in the Hindu Kush Himalayan region, according to ICIMOD's director of programme operation Eklabya Sharma.
The decision was formalized at the initiative's 2nd experts' consultation meeting held on April 16-18 in Thimphu, Bhutan, based on the concept and time frame decided at the first experts' consultation held in August 2012 in Gangtok, Sikkim. The three countries prepared feasibility assessment reports, which were shared at the meeting.
"The participatory and consultative process followed during the preparation of Feasibility Assessment reports by the member countries are encouraging steps towards transboundary cooperation," said Mr Sharma.
He said all three countries have consented their full commitment for the preparatory phase of the Kanchenjunga Landscape Conservation and Development Initiative. UNI XC-PC PL NNNN
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