PANEX-21 is a Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief Exercise. It is to be held for the BIMSTEC countries.
- It is a multi national disaster relief exercise.
- The exercise is to be held among the BIMSTEC countries: Bhutan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, India and Thailand.
- The main aim of the exercise is to build regional cooperation in responding to natural disasters.
- It is to be conducted in Pune from December 20 to December 22.
How will the exercise be conducted?
- The participants of the exercise will be divided into eight syndicates. One syndicate from the participating countries and two from India.
- It will analyse the capabilities of member states in responding to natural disaster. The countries will share their best practices.
- The exercise will review the procedures of preparedness and response. It will then recommend the evolution of organised structure.
- During the exercise, the countries will discuss military – to – military cooperation protocol.
Why is the exercise important?
- Recently, the cyclones in Bay of Bengal are becoming more disastrous. This is mainly due to climate change. The increase in surface sea temperature is making the cyclones more powerful. The increase in sea – surface temperature increases the wind speeds of the cyclones. The devastation caused by Cyclone Amphan was 13 billion USD.
- The unplanned development in Ecological Sensitive Zones fail to address the risks posed by the increasing intense cyclones.
For these reasons, it is essential to remain prepared. Therefore, there is a need for international cooperation among the coastal countries.