ECO Secretary General, Dr. Hadi Soleimanpour attended the 26th Executive Committee and 17the General Assembly Meetings of the ECO-Chambers of Commerce and Industry (ECO-CCI) which were inaugurated by H.E. Mr. M. Rifat Hisarciklioglu, President of the Union of the Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB) on 30 July, 2019 in Istanbul and hosted by the TOBB/ECO-CCI Secretariat.
ECO Secretary General, Dr. Hadi Soleimanpour attended the 26th Executive Committee and 17the General Assembly Meetings of the ECO-Chambers of Commerce and Industry (ECO-CCI) which were inaugurated by H.E. Mr. M. Rifat Hisarciklioglu, President of the Union of the Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB) on 30 July, 2019 in Istanbul and hosted by the TOBB/ECO-CCI Secretariat. President of the National Chamber of Islamic Republic of Afghanistan who is also the President of ECO-CCI authorized Mr. Adem Kula, Secretary General ECO-CCI to chair the Meetings. It was also attended by Mr. Daroo Khan Achakzai, President of Federation of Pakistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) and Mr. Seyed Hossein Salimi from Iran Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
The delegations of National Chambers of nine ECO Member States, namely, the Republic of Azerbaijan, the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Republic of Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, the Republic of Tajikistan, the Republic of Turkey (the host), Turkmenistan and the Republic of Uzbekistan headed by the Presidents/Vice Presidents/ high level representatives of National Chambers of Commerce and Industry delivered statements and actively participated in the Meetings which deliberated on the ways for strengthening cooperation through greater engagement of the private sector. The participating officials also appreciated the TOBB for the warm hospitality and excellent arrangements made for the meetings.
In his statement, ECO Secretary General, Dr. Hadi Soleimanpour underscored the significance of cooperation in promoting economic growth of the Member States and improving living standards of people in this region blessed with abundant natural and human resources. He hoped that implementation of the ECO Vision-2025 will take the region on a trajectory of enhanced economic growth and development in the next decade. He also referred to ECO's legal frameworks especially ECOTA, APPI, TTFA, institutional mechanisms, initiatives, projects and programmes which are a clear reflection of collaboration, nonetheless, it requires more interest and participation of the Member States to capitalize the potential benefits and generate greater opportunities. He maintained that ECO Secretariat is in an effort to speed up completion of projects in the areas of trade, transportation, energy, tourism, etc., with the collaboration of regional and international organizations and appreciated interest of the private sector therein which would help improve speed of implementation of on-going projects/programmes and develop new ones for the collective benefit of the region.
The dignitaries from the National Chambers of the Member States in their statements highlighted that the trade level among Member States is far below expectation level and that investment in regional infrastructure and human resources can play important role in fostering economic growth and development in the region. They stressed on the need for increased cooperation at government and business levels and operationalization of ECO Trade Agreement (ECOTA) and improve connectivity through KTI, KTAI rail and road corridors to make the region more integrated for the prosperity and socio-economic development of the region. They emphasized on removal of impediments for enhancement of intra-ECO trade.
In part-II of the Program, constituting Statutory Session of the 26th Executive Committee and 18 General Assembly Meeting, the Secretary General of ECO-CCI, Mr. Adem Kula, presented activity report of ECO-CCI since 25th ECO CCI Executive Committee Meeting held in Tashkent in December, 2018. Reports of sectoral Committee Meetings i.e. Trade Facilitation Committee, Industry and Investment Committee, Transportation Committee, Tourism Committee, Arbitration Committee, Women Entrepreneurs Council (WEC) Committee held on 28-29 July, 2019 were presented along with the report on the training session of National Chambers. Mr. Muhammad Safdar from the Directorate of Trade and Investment represented ECO in these meetings prior to Executive Committee and General Assembly Meetings.
The Meeting concluded with appreciative note and high spirit aiming to strengthening cooperation and collaboration in all vital areas and with resolution to take maximum advantage from the region's vast and huge resources through stepping up efforts in all major areas and strengthening cooperation under the ECO umbrella.
After ECO-CCI meetings, ECO Secretary General, Dr. Hadi Soleimanpour with his delegation, held a bilateral meeting with H.E. Mr. M. Rifat Hisarciklioglu, President of the Union of the Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB) and discussed matters of mutual interest and ways and means to accelerate cooperation in region.