- The President of the People's Republic of Bangladesh, His
Excellency Mr. Hussain Muhammad Ershad, the King of Bhutan, His
Majesty King Jigme Singye Wangchuck, the Prime Minister of the
Republic of India, His Excellency Mr. Chandra Shekhar, the President
of the Republic of Maldives, His Excellency Mr. Maumoon Abdul
Gayoom, the Prime Minister of Nepal, The Right Honourable Krishna
Prasad Bhattarai, the Prime Minister of the Islamic Republic of
Pakistan, His Excellency Mr. Mohammad Nawaz Sharif and the Prime
Minister of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, His
Excellency Mr. Dingiri Banda Wijetunga met at the Fifth Summit of
the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation at Male' on
2123 November, 1990.
- The Heads of State or Government reiterated that cooperation
among the countries of South Asia was necessary for improving the
quality of life of the peoples of the region. They recalled their
conviction that the objectives of peace and stability in South Asia
could be best served by fostering mutual understanding, cooperation
and good neighbourly relations. They reaffirmed their commitment to
the purposes and principles of the South Asian Association for
Regional Cooperation and renewed their resolve to intensify
cooperation under its aegis in pursuit of their common objectives.
- The Heads of State or Government stressed their desire to promote
peace, stability, amity and progress in the region through strict
adherence to the principles of the United Nations Charter and the
Nonaligned Movement, particularly respect for the principles of
sovereign equality, territorial integrity, national independence,
nonuse of force, noninterference in the internal affairs of other
States and peaceful settlement of disputes.
- The Heads of State or Government expressed satisfaction that the
launching of SAARC in 1985 and the initiatives under the Integrated
Programme of Action for strengthening regional cooperation in South
Asia had generated much enthusiasm and hope in their peoples, and
that the South Asian consciousness necessary for the success of
regional cooperation was gradually permeating the region. They
reiterated their resolve to make optimal use of the positive forces
of goodwill, trust and understanding existing among their peoples
and to turn SAARC into a dynamic instrument for achieving its
objectives and creating an order based on mutual respect, equity,
cooperation and shared benefits.
- The Heads of State or Government reviewed the status of children
in South Asia and noted that the recent World Summit for Children
had imparted a new impetus to the ongoing efforts in this field.
They believed that relevant recommendations of the World Summit
could be usefully incorporated into a Plan of Action in the South
Asian context and its implementation should be reviewed annually.
The guidelines for such Plan of Action could be prepared by a panel
of experts to be appointed by the SecretaryGeneral and examined by
the Technical Committee on Health and Population Activities. They
also welcomed the adoption of the Convention on the Rights of the
Child and its entry into force. They expressed the hope that those
Member States, who have not already become party to the Convention,
would do so at an early date.
- The Heads of State or Government endorsed the recommendations
made by the Second SAARC Ministerial Meeting on Women in Development
held in Islamabad in June 1990. They noted with satisfaction the
enthusiastic response in all Member States to their collective call
for the observance of 1990 as the "SAARC Year of the Girl Child".
They decided that in order to maintain focus on the problems of the
Girl Child, the years 19912000 AD should be observed as the "SAARC
Decade of the Girl Child".
- The Heads of State or Government noted with satisfaction the
growing regional cooperation in combating the problems of drug
trafficking and drug abuse. They expressed serious concern over the
growing linkages between drug trafficking and international arms
trade and terrorist activities. They agreed that observance of 1989
as the "SAARC Year for Combating Drug Abuse and Drug
Trafficking" had had a profound impact in drawing attention to
the menace and to the need for its elimination. They expressed
satisfaction that following the decision of the Fourth SAARC Summit,
the SAARC Convention on Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances
had been signed at Male'. They urged the Member States to take early
measures to ratify the convention for its entry into force. They
were convinced that the Convention would help in making SAARC
efforts in this area more effective.
- They endorsed the decision of the Council of Ministers in regard
to the timeframe for completion of the Regional Study on the Causes
and Consequences of Natural Disasters and the Protection and
Preservation of the Environment. They noted with satisfaction that
the methodology for undertaking the Study on the `Greenhouse Effect'
and its impact on the region was likely to be finalized in the near
future and desired that the Study itself be completed for
consideration at the Sixth Summit. In this context, they noted that
the destruction of rainforests, the world over, was contributing
significantly to adverse climatic changes and this aspect should
also be covered in the proposed Study. They expressed the hope that
these Studies would lead to an action plan for meaningful
cooperation in the field of Environment and Disaster Management.
- Recognizing that environment had emerged as a major global
concern, the Heads of State or Government noted with alarm the
unprecedented climatic changes predicted by the Intergovernmental
Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). They urged the international
community to mobilize additional finances and to make available
appropriate technologies to enable the developing countries to face
the new challenges arising from climate changes and sealevel rise.
They agreed that Member Countries should coordinate their positions
at international fora on this issue. They also decided to observe
1992 as the "SAARC Year of Environment".
- The Heads of State or Government noted with satisfaction that the
national studies on Trade, Manufactures and Services had been
completed. They underlined the need for expeditious action for
completing the Regional Study within the timeframe stipulated by the
Council of Ministers. They expressed the hope that it would open new
avenues of cooperation for the prosperity of the peoples of the
- The Heads of State or Government approved the recommendations of
the Council of Ministers regarding Special SAARC Travel Document and
decided to launch the scheme.
- The Heads of State or Government expressed concern that Member
States were compelled to divert their scarce resources in combating
terrorism. They called for expeditious enactment of enabling
measures for the implementation of the SAARC Regional Convention on
Suppression of Terrorism. They also urged Member States to continue
to cooperate in accordance with the Convention.
- The Heads of State or Government noted that as their countries
stood on the threshold of the next millennium, the world was
undergoing profound transformations characterised by popular upsurge
for democracy, liberty and exercise of human rights, lowering of
ideological barriers and the relaxation of global tensions and
progress towards disarmament and the resolution of a number of
regional and global conflicts. There was also a welcome trend
towards the opening up of the global economy and integration of
national economies into the mainstream of the world economy. They
further noted the trend of increasing integration of the pattern of
global production, consumption and trade, growing multipolarity of
the world economic structure and integration of the markets of the
developed countries in order to maintain their technological lead
and competitive edge. These changes presented new challenges and
opened up new opportunities to the South Asian countries, as to the
rest of the developing world. The Heads of State or Government were
convinced that their mutual cooperation can be a critical factor in
enabling them to pursue these objectives more effectively.
- The Heads of State or Government, noting the vital importance of
biotechnology for the longterm food security of developing countries
as well as for medicinal purposes, decided that cooperation should
be extended to this field and, in particular, to the exchange of
expertise in genetic conservation and maintenance of germplasm
banks. In this connection, they welcomed India's offer of training
facilities and agreed that cooperation in the cataloguing of genetic
resources stored in different SAARC countries would be mutually
beneficial. Taking note of the proposal made by the Group of Fifteen
Developing Countries (G15) for the establishment of a gene bank for
developing countries, they agreed to participate in this venture.
- The Heads of State or Government welcomed the idea of setting up
of a Fund for regional projects which could make available credit on
easy terms for the identification and development of regional
projects. They agreed that representatives of the national
development banks of the Member Countries should get together to
work out the precise modalities for the source of funds and the
manner in which these could be related to joint venture projects.
They accepted India's offer to host this meeting.
- The Heads of State or Government regarded the recent developments
in the Gulf as the most unfortunate aberration from the present
trend of detente, cooperation and peaceful settlement of disputes.
They reaffirmed their adherence to UN Security Council Resolutions
on this issue. While emphasizing the need for a peaceful solution of
the issue, they called for immediate and unconditional withdrawal of
Iraqi forces from Kuwait and the restoration of its legitimate
Government. They stated that the Gulf crisis had dealt a severe blow
to their economies. They needed massive international assistance to
compensate the loss suffered by them due to a sharp decline in
remittances, setback to their exports and severe strain on their
balance of payments position imposed by increased oil prices. They
recognized the potentiality of cooperation among themselves for
mitigating the impact of these adverse consequences.
- The Heads of State or Government noted with satisfaction that the
initiative of the Government of the Maldives for the Protection and
Security of Small States at the UN in 1989, which they all
supported, had also received overwhelming support of the
international community. They agreed that, because of their
particular problems, small states merited special measures of
support in safeguarding their independence and territorial
- The Heads of State or Government expressed the hope that the
talks between the two Super Powers on arms control would culminate
in the conclusion of an agreement for substantial reduction in their
nuclear arsenals leading to the total elimination of nuclear
weapons. While welcoming the measures being considered for arms
reduction at the global level, they were convinced that the
objective could be best achieved through the promotion of mutual
trust and confidence among the Member States. They underlined the
inherent relationship between disarmament and development and called
upon all countries, especially those possessing the largest nuclear
and conventional arsenals, to rechannel additional financial
resources, human energy and creativity into development. They
expressed their support for the banning of chemical weapons and
early conclusion of a Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty. In this
context, they welcomed the convening of the UN Conference in January
1991 to consider amendments to the Partial Test Ban Treaty to
convert it into a Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty.
- The Heads of State or Government expressed concern that the
international economic environment for the developing countries had
been characterised by negative resource flows, high trade barriers,
serious external debt problems and high interest rates. The need of
SAARC countries for increased concessional resources and technology
as well as access to markets for their exports could not, therefore,
be under estimated. They called for collective efforts based on
mutuality of interest and felt that regular NorthSouth consultations
were essential for ensuring equitable management of global
- The Heads of State or Government recalled the usefulness of the
First Ministerial Meeting on International Economic Issues held in
Islamabad in 1986. They agreed that the second such Ministerial
Meeting be held in India in 1991 to review the outcome of the
Uruguay Round and to coordinate positions at international
conferences including the U.N. Conference on Environment and
- Notwithstanding the continuing efforts on the international
economic plane, the Heads of State or Government emphasised the
pressing need for the Ministerial Meeting to address itself
vigorously to the objective of selfreliance. They directed the
Ministers to prepare a strategy for mobilising regional resources
which would encourage and strengthen individual and collective self
reliance in the region.
- The Heads of State or Government expressed their support for the
Paris Declaration (1990) and the Programme of Action adopted by the
Second United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries.
They called upon the international community to contribute to the
successful implementation of the Programme of Action which is of
special importance for the socioeconomic development of the region.
- The Heads of State or Government recognized the imperative need
for providing a better habitat to the peoples of South Asia through
optimum utilization of indigenous technology, knowhow and material,
and decided that 1991 be observed as the "SAARC Year of Shelter".
- The Heads of State or Government noted that millions of disabled
persons lived in the SAARC region and immediate action was required
to reduce their sufferings and to improve their quality of life.
They decided to observe 1993 as the "SAARC Year of Disabled
- The Heads of State or Government were particularly happy that the
Fifth SAARC Summit coincided with the Twenty Fifth Anniversary of
the Independence of the Maldives which provided them with the
opportunity to express their solidarity with the people and the
Government of the Maldives. They expressed their conviction that the
Male' Summit had helped in consolidating the gains of regional
cooperation and in strengthening the institutional base of SAARC.
- The Heads of State or Government gratefully accepted the offer of
the Government of Sri Lanka to host the Sixth SAARC Summit in 1991.
- The Heads of State or Government of Bangladesh, Bhutan, India,
Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka expressed their deep appreciation for
the exemplary manner in which the President of the Maldives had
discharged his responsibilities as Chairman of the Meeting. They
expressed their profound gratitude for the warm and gracious
hospitality extended to them by the Government and the people of the
Maldives and for the excellent arrangements made for the Meeting.