Indian Ocean Rim Association
The Indian Ocean is the world’s third largest ocean. It carries half of the world’s container ships, one third of the world’s bulk cargo traffic and two thirds of the world’s oil shipments. It is a lifeline of international trade and transport. The region is woven together by trade routes and commands control of major sea-lanes.
The Indian Ocean Rim is a region comprised of the states whose shores are washed by the waters of the Indian Ocean. The region is home to about two billion people. It is a region of much cultural diversity and richness - in languages, religions, traditions, arts and cuisines. The countries of the Indian Ocean Rim vary considerably in terms of their areas, populations and levels of economic development. They may also be divided into a number of sub-regions (Australasia, Southeast Asia, South Asia, West Asia and Eastern & Southern Africa), each with their own regional groupings (such as ASEAN, SAARC, GCC and SADC, to name a few).
The Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) is an international organization with 21 Member States - Australia, Bangladesh, Comoros, India, Indonesia, Iran, Kenya, Madagascar, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mozambique, Oman, Seychelles, Singapore, Somalia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand, UAE and Yemen.
The objectives of the Association are as follows:
• To promote the sustained growth and balanced development of the region and of the Member States, and to create common ground for regional economic co-operation.
• To focus on those areas of economic co-operation which provide maximum opportunities to develop shared interests and reap mutual benefits.
• To explore all possibilities and avenues for trade liberalisation, to remove impediments to, and lower barriers towards, freer and enhanced flow of goods, services, investment, and technology within the region.
• To encourage close interaction of trade and industry, academic institutions, scholars and the peoples of the Member States without any discrimination among Member States and without prejudice to obligations under other regional economic and trade co-operation arrangements.
• To strengthen co-operation and dialogue among Member States in international fora on global economic issues, and where desirable to develop shared strategies and take common positions in the international fora on issues of mutual interest; and
• To promote co-operation in development of human resources, particularly through closer linkages among training institutions, universities and other specialised institutions of the Member States.