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

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

The ECO summit will be chaired by President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, the Foreign Office said Friday.

The theme of the summit is ‘Into the Future Together. The summit meeting will review the activities of the Organization and adopt ‘Ashgabat Consensus for Action’ as the outcome document.

The president will address the plenary session of the Summit. He will also hold bilateral meetings with participating leaders on the sidelines of the ECO Summit.

The ECO is a regional economic trade and development Organization established in 1985. Pakistan, Iran, and Turkey are its founding members. The three countries were earlier part of the RCD (Regional Cooperation for Development), established in 1964.

In 1992, the ECO expanded to include Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Kazakhstan. Afghanistan also became a member later.

The ECO region is located in neighborhoods of China, Europe, Russia, and the Gulf States.

It comprises 6.3 percent of the world’s population. It contributes more than 2% to global trade with around 3 percent share in global GDP.

The region is rich in fossil fuel and mineral resources. The intra-region trade is 8 percent. The main trading partners of the region are the EU, China, and the U.S.

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 programs and activities, the Summit meeting will also consider the mid-term review of ECO Vision 2025.

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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