ECO Secretary General participated in the 31st Session of the Islamic Conference of Foreign Ministers held in Istanbul
The Secretary General of ECO, H.E. Mr. Askhat Orazbay participated in the 31st Session of the Islamic Conference of Foreign Ministers held in Istanbul, 14-16 June 2004 as an Observer on the invitation of H.E. Dr. Abdelouahed Belkeziz, Secretary General of OIC.
The Conference stressed the need for greater cooperation, coordination, consultation and for a common stance in international fora. The Conference asked the international community to ensure that the benefits of globalization are fairly shared among all countries so as to strike a balance between the advantages and obligations of developing countries including OIC member states. It also called on developed countries to ensure greater trade liberalization and opportunities for the products and services of the developing countries. The Conference urged member states to increase their share of world trade through greater competitiveness at the international level and for speedy accession of all the developing countries to the WTO. The Conference requested the OIC Secretary General to contact with international and regional organizations in order to establish, maintain and strengthen cooperation with them. He was further requested to conduct a study on how to identify the appropriate areas of cooperation that are of common concern and to submit in the next session for appropriate decision.
The aims and objectives of the OIC and ECO coincide a great deal towards their common membership. To realize their objectives, ECO gives high priority to its contacts with OIC and its subsidiary institutions. The visit of the Secretary General to attend the 31st Session of the Islamic Conference of Foreign Ministers has provided opportunity for close relations with regional and international agencies to strengthen economic and commercial cooperation in the areas of mutual interest.
Availing the opportunity, the Secretary General called on H.E. Ambassador Ayhan Kamel, Executive Director of the Group of Developing-eight Countries (D8) and H.E. Ambassador Valeri Chechelashvili, Secretary General of Organization of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation (BSEC). Both the organizations showed great interest in mutual cooperation with ECO in various fields of common interest. They stressed the need to share their experiences with ECO through the countries of common membership.