• Directorate for Trade and Investment
      Directorate for Trade and Investment (T&I) is the responsible body within the ECO Secretariat for initiation, implementation and monitoring of ECO activities in trade, investment and related areas. One of the core objectives of ECO is promotion of trade and investment among its Member States. In pursuance of this objective, the Organization has laid down necessary regulatory frameworks for investment opportunities and initiated measures towards progressive removal of trade barriers within the Region and expansion of intra and inter-regional trade and investment.

      ECO’s strategy for enhanced intra and inter-regional trade and investment rests mainly on the following pillars:

      i) Trade liberalization including removal of tariff and non-tariff barriers in the region, thus providing an enabling environment for trade and developing favourable conditions for optimal use of economic resources.

      ii) Reducing the cost of doing business and facilitating movement of goods among the Member countries.

      iii) Providing assistance and support to the Member States in trade promotion activities and support them in their accession process to WTO.

      iv) Strengthening private sector cooperation.

      v) Providing finance for regional trade through operations of ECO Trade and Development Bank and assistance from international donors.

      Decisions of various high level meetings including Ministerial Meetings on Commerce and Foreign Trade and Ministerial Meetings on Finance and Economy, the Meetings of Heads of Tax Administration, Heads of Central Banks, Heads of Customs Administrations, and Heads of Trade Promotion Organizations provide the directions for ECO cooperation in the areas of trade finance and investment.

      Various institutional mechanisms have been established to contribute to regional cooperation and integration. The establishment of ECO Trade and Development Bank was an important development towards the achievement of the ECO objectives. ECO Chamber of Commerce and Industry is well placed to represent the private sectors and strengthen cooperation among the National Chambers.

      The ECO Ministerial Meetings on Commerce and Foreign Trade have provided strong foundations for enhancing cooperation in the specialized fields. So far, four Ministerial meetings have been held which took decisions on the major frameworks and institutions.

      ECO Trade Agreement (ECOTA) is the flagship preferential trading arrangement of the Region. Its implementation would help enhancing intra regional trade, reaching economies of scale and improving competition in the ECO Region and constitute a major step towards establishing ECO Free Trade Area.

      The T&I Directorate is also responsible to ensure proper follow-up for implementation of the relevant actions envisaged under ECO Vision 2025. Besides, T&I Directorate also pursues its duties through partnerships with the relevant partners from within and outside ECO Region.

      Director and Staff

      Mr. Zahid Hussain Abbasi​ (Pakistani national)
      Director for Trade and Investment
      Tel: + 98 (21)-22831733-34
      Email: zahid@eco.int

      Ms. Sholpan Karymbayeva (Kazakh national)
      Programme Officer
      Tel: + 98 (21)-22831733-34
      Email: karimbayeva@eco.int

      ​Mr. Hossein Rahimi (Iranian national)
      Programme Officer
      Tel: (+9821) 22831733-34
      Email: rahimi@eco.int

      Mr. Zeshan Altaf Khan (Pakistani national)
      Tel: (+9821) 22831733-34
      Email: altafkhan@eco.int

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