Beginning the mid-1980s, most countries, across all regions of the world, started to rapidly embark on the path of globalization and liberalization. The global wave of globalization and liberalization also created a compelling situation for South Asian countries to follow suit. This led South Asian governments and stakeholders alike to design strategies and implement measures that enhance their capacities to benefit from regional and global integration, and respond to the adverse implications of globalization for their economies.
In order to complement the efforts of South Asian governments and stakeholders, and to bring to the fore the views and concerns of the marginalized and poor segments of society, South Asia Watch on Trade, Economics and Environment (SAWTEE) was launched in 1994 as a loose regional network of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) from five South Asian countries: Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. Taking into consideration the emerging need for fair, effective and meaningful integration of South Asian countries into the regional as well as global economies, the major motto of this regional initiative has been “GLOBALIZATION YES, BUT WITH SAFETY NETS”.
From 1994 to 1997, its secretariat was housed in Kolkata, India at the office of Consumer Unity & Trust Society (CUTS), a founding member institution of the network. With the emergence of consensus among network members, in 1997, SAWTEE's secretariat was moved to Kathmandu, Nepal. Since then, SAWTEE has strengthened its activities ranging from sensitization and awareness raising to independent and concrete policy research, capacity building and advocacy on trade, economic and environmental issues at local, national, regional and international levels.
SAWTEE was registered with the District Administration Office, Kathmandu, Nepal to operate as a regional non-profit, NGO in 1999. Due to its research capacity, policy outreach and developmental impacts, the organization has been growingly recognized as a think tank at local, national, regional and global levels. SAWTEE is also recognized in the capacity of a secretariat of a national network of Nepal-based national and international NGOs called National Alliance for Food Security in Nepal (NAFOS); a global network of civil society organizations (CSOs) working on biodiversity management and farmers' rights issues called Farmers' Rights Advocacy Network (FRANK); and a global network of least-developed countries (LDCs) established for the economic transformation of LDCs, called Least Developed Countries Network for Economic Transformation (LDC-NET). Its members and staff have served/been serving on the board of various international and national agencies working on trade, development, farmers’ rights and food security issues.
PO Box: 19366
Tukucha Marg, Baluwatar