Regional Cooperation

South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation

The South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation (SASEC) Program brings together Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Nepal, and Sri Lanka in a project-based partnership that improves the quality of life for people in one of the world’s poorest, most densely populated areas. Yet there is tremendous potential for these countries to increase trade among themselves and within South Asia. SASEC seeks to strengthen cross-border connectivity by creating multi-modal transport networks that boost intraregional trade, and open up trade opportunities with East and Southeast Asia. It helps build modern and effective customs administrations that speed up the time and reduce the costs of moving goods and vehicles across borders. SASEC also helps member countries improve energy security by developing infrastructure and promoting intraregional power trade to reduce costs and import dependence.

Since 2001, ADB has provided more than $5.4 billion in financial and technical support to 30 projects in the transport, trade facilitation, and energy sectors. ADB serves as the SASEC Secretariat.