External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on April 1 attended the 17th BIMSTEC (The Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation) Ministerial Meet. Speaking on the occasion, he said that robust connectivity is an essential pre-requisite of economic integration of the region. "Robust connectivity is an essential pre-requisite of economic integration of the region with smooth cross-border movement of people and goods. I'm delighted that the member states have finalised a BIMSTEC master plan for transport connectivity," said EAM Jaishankar. "Our collaboration in intra-regional tourism has been badly hit naturally by COVID pandemic. As situation normalises, we should lay strong emphasis on promoting the BIMSTEC brand of tourism and develop modalities for utilization of BIMSTEC tourism fund," he added.