The 2nd Meeting of ECO Technical Committee on Electronic Data Interchange (EDI), hosted by the Islamic Republic of Iran; was held virtually on 9th November 2021. The delegates from Islamic Republic of Iran (host), Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, Islamic Republic of Pakistan, Republic of Kazakhstan, Republic of Tajikistan and Republic of Uzbekistan participated in the meeting. ECO Secretariat delegation headed by Deputy Secretary General (DSG), Dr Syed Yahya Akhlaqi, also attended the Meeting.
Dr. Sayed Yahya Akhlaqi, DSG, ECO while inaugurating the meeting noted that trade is an engine of economic development and an instrument of socio-economic integration. For creation of compatibilities and drive towards economic efficiency it is necessary to reduce the cost of doing business and focus on institutional capacity building.
In this regard, Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) needs digitalization of the business documents, harmonization of formats and languages, synergies in the processes and their transmission to add to trade facilitation in the region. He emphasized that there is a need to harmonize EDI at regional level to increase the prospects of intra-regional trade.
The chair of the meeting Mr. Hossein Kakhki Director General of international Cooperation Department of the Islamic Republic of Iran Customs Administration (IRICA), in his opening remarks, emphasized the need for trade facilitation and Customs control by using intelligence-driven risk management system. For progress in this matter, he stressed the need for accurate data from various resources. He opined that the exchange of trade and customs-related information in a real time manner; is crucial.
The meeting held comprehensive discussions and deliberations on the issues surrounding EDI such as the architecture of the data system, the basic components of the EDI infrastructure, standard format for the transactions and minimum requirements of the software.
The meeting decided to establish an expert working group to “formulate recommendations on data elements’ for presenting to the next EDI Committee for endorsement. The Secretariat will schedule the meeting of the Working Group.