Common Grounds: Ways to Regional Cooperation in South Asia

Challenges and Chances for Peace and Stability in the SAARC Region



July 3 - 5, 2011


Berlin, Germany



The workshop focuses on challenges faced by all South Asian countries alike, such as internal security and political conflicts, economic development barriers, consequences of climate change and resource scarcity issues

Monday, 4th July 2011

9.45 Registration and Coffee

10.00 Opening Session

Introductory Remarks Dr. Gerhard Wahlers Deputy Secretary General Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung, Berlin

10.15 Assessment of the Status Quo: Major obstacles to regional cooperation and initiatives to overcome them What are the major obstacles to regional cooperation in South Asia? What are the underlying reasons for poor neighbourhood relations? In this respect, what did SAARC achieve so far? etc.

Statement Major General Dipankar Banerjee (Retd.) Director Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies (IPCS), New Delhi

Comment Salma Malik Assistant Professor Institute for Defense Studies (DSS), Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad

Klaus-Jürgen Hedrich State Secretary (Retd.) and Member of the Bundestag (Retd.) Uelzen

Chair Dr. Gerhard Wahlers Deputy Secretary General Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung, Berlin

11.15 Coffee break

11.45 Democratic Deficiencies, Political Instability and Intrastate Conflicts as Threats to National and Regional Stability: A sphere of action for SAARC? Should SAARC serve as a platform for input to democratic development, respect for human rights, peaceful conflict regulation etc.? How to reduce the governance gap and improve stability in the region? What about the idea of implementing a human rights mechanism for SAARC? etc.

Statement Nishchal Pandey Director Centre for South Asian Studies (CSAS), Kathmandu

Comment Prof. Amar Jayawardane Executive Director Regional Centre for Strategic Studies (RCSS), Colombo

Dr. habil Christian Wagner Head of Research Division Asia German Institute for International and Security Affairs, Berlin

Chair Tomislav Delinic Director Regional Program SAARC Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung, New Delhi

13.00 Lunch

14.00 Islamist Terrorist Movements as a Threat to National Security and Regional Stability: Common grounds for regional security cooperation? What are the implications of the spread of Islamist terrorist movements in the region? How to engage Pakistan effectively in combating Islamist terrorist groups on its soil? How to engage Pakistan and India in a common dialogue on Afghanistan? What role does Kashmir play in this regard? etc.

Statement Dr. Simbal Khan Director Afghanistan & Central Asia Institute of Strategic Studies Islamabad (ISSI), Islamabad

Comment Dr. Jochen Hippler Research Fellow University of Duisburg

Col. (GS) Rainer Meyer zum Felde Head of Security Policy and Strategy Department German Armed Forces Command and Staff College, Hamburg

Chair Dr. Gunter Mulack Former German Ambassador to Pakistan Executive Director of the German Orient-Institute, Berlin

16.00 Coffee break

16.30 Scarcity of Energy and Resources as a Threat to National Prosperity and Regional Development: Common grounds for regional resource cooperation? How to overcome the region’s energy crisis? What future role for common pipeline policies/strategies? How to deal with water conflicts in the region? etc.

Statement Tashi Choden Senior Researcher Centre for Bhutan Studies (CBS), Thimphu

Comment Colonel AKM Nazrul Islam Research Director Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies (BIISS), Dhaka

Prof. Dr. Friedbert Pflüger Director European Centre for Energy and Resource Security (EUCERS) King’s College, London

Chair Dr. Beatrice Gorawantschy Country Representative to India Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung, New Delhi

Tuesday, 5th July 2011

9.45 Registration and Coffee

10.00 Poverty, Social Inequalities and Barriers to Economic Growth as Obstacles to National and Regional Prosperity and Development: Common grounds for fostering transit trade agreements and broader economic reforms? What are the major barriers to economic growth in the region? How to implement transit trade reforms? How to make the South Asian free trade zone work? Could social market economy serve as a model for South Asia? etc.

Statement Dr. Nisha Taneja Professor Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations (ICRIER), New Delhi

Comment Dr. Rajan Malaviya Director Institute for Economic and Policy Consultancy, Frankfurt

Mario Sander v. Torklus Advisor for Development Policy and North-South Questions German Federal Chancellery, Berlin

Chair Susanna Vogt Coordinator International Economic Policy Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung, Berlin

12.00 Lunch

13.00 Climate Change and Environmental Degradation as Threats to National and Regional Stability: Common grounds for regional cooperation on crisis response and early warning systems? What chances for disaster management cooperation? Did last year’s floods in Pakistan provide an input to foster regional cooperation on common crisis management and early warning mechanisms? Does South Asia risk climate induced conflicts? etc.

Statement Major General Muniruzzaman, ndc, psc (Retd) President and CEO Bangladesh Institute for Peace and Security Studies (BIPSS), Dhaka

Comment Dr. Jürgen Bischoff Senior Advisor Adelphi, Berlin

Kerstin Faehrmann Head of Division Emergency and transitional aid Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, Berlin

Chair Dr. Philipp Rock Designated Country Representative to Afghanistan Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung, Berlin

14.45 Coffee break

15.00 Review of Conference Findings, Discussion and Concluding Remarks

Chair Dr. Stefan Friedrich Head of Team Asia and Pacific Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung, Berlin

End of Conference

F. L-R.: Dr. Khan (ISSI, Pakistan), Tashi Choden (CBS, Bhutan), Dr. Taneja (ICRIER, Indien), Dr. Gorawantschy (KAS, India) / Behind Row L-R: Nishchal Pandey (CSAS, Nepal), Prof. Jayawardene (RCSS, Sri Lanka), Dr. Rock (KAS, Afghanistan), General Muniruzzaman (BIPSS, Bangladesh), Dr. Nunn (Asia Representative of the Foreign Office), Tomislav Delinic (KAS, South Asia), General Banerjee (IPCS, India), A. K. M. Islam (BIISS, Bangladesh).

Contact person

Tomislav Delinic

Head of Team Evaluation Division

Tomislav Delinic
Phone +49 30 26996-3435
Fax +49 30 26996-53435
Languages: Deutsch,‎ English,‎ Česky,‎ Hrvatski