It is the regional intergovernmental organization and geopolitical union of nations in South Asia. Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, the Maldives, Pakistan and Sri Lanka are its members. Its secretariat is based in Kathmandu, Nepal.
The organization promotes development of economic and regional integration. SAARC maintains permanent diplomatic relations at the United Nations as an observer and has developed links with multilateral entities, including the European Union. States with observer status include Australia, China, European Union, Iran, Japan, Mauritius, Myanmar, South Korea and United States.