"To foster people to people contact, we would like to propose holding tourism conclave with the participation of Industry stakeholders and local officials. In the last 20 years, much progress has already been made in our countries in terms of multimodal transport infrastructure and cross border linkage," Mitter said.
The time is opportune to look at these developments not just in terms of movement of goods but also of local people of tourism including medical and educational tourism and participation in each other's well established cultural festival. This can be supplemented by holding a BCIM film festival. Apart from its publicity value, it will bring a new category of persons namely filmmakers and artists," he added.
In his speech, Mitter pointed to four neglected areas namely- digital connectivity, traditional medicine, biological hotspots and communicable disease control -- where much work needed to be done.
Lastly, he suggested, "India is happy to host an academic conference of a specialist where research paper submitted can be incorporated into volume marking the 20th anniversary of BCIM forum thus making it available to a wider international audience."
The joint statement of the 13th BCIM forum has backed the suggestion made by India about hosting the BCIM film festival.
"The parties agreed to deepen in the social and cultural and educational sector by consolidating the foundation of people to people exchanges and strengthening think tanks networking mechanism and establish a network university cooperation," the joint statement read.
"Other initiatives could include hosting conferences theme such as traditional medicine, tourism and organising BCIM film festival," it added.
The next meeting of BCIM will take place in India. The date and venue will be decided after consultations with the parties.