President to attend 15th ECO summit in Asgabat on Nov 28

Regional economic trade, development organisation contributes more than 2pc to global trade

ISLAMABAD: President Dr Arif Alvi will pay an official visit to Turkmenistan to attend the 15th summit of the Economic Cooperation Organisation (ECO) being held in Ashgabat on November 28.

The summit will be chaired by President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov. The theme of the summit is ‘Into the Future Together’. The meeting will review activities of the organisation and adopt the ‘Ashgabat Consensus for Action’, the Foreign Office (FO) said here on Friday.

As per details, President Alvi will address the plenary session of the summit and will also hold bilateral meetings with participating leaders on the sidelines of the meeting.

The ECO is a regional economic trade and development organisation established in 1985 with Pakistan, Iran and Turkey as founding members. The three countries were earlier part of the Regional Cooperation for Development (RCD) established in 1964. In 1992, the ECO expanded to include Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan while Afghanistan also became a member later.

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The ECO region is located in neighbourhood of China, Europe, Russia and Gulf States. It comprises 6.3 per cent of world population and contributes more than 2pc to global trade with around 3pc share in global GDP. Intra-region trade is 8pc while main trading partners of the region include EU, China and the U.S.

It may be recalled that Pakistan hosted the 13th ECO summit in Islamabad in 2017, while the 14th ECO Summit was hosted by Turkey in virtual format.

Besides reviewing ECO programmes and activities, the meeting will also consider the mid-term review of the ECO Vision 2025.

The Vision 2025 was adopted in 2017 during the 13th Summit held in Pakistan. It serves as an overarching policy roadmap for the future and revival of ECO and provides guidelines for cooperation in trade, connectivity, energy, tourism, economic growth, social welfare and the environment.

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