ECO Secretariat participated in the IDB Consultative Forum with the Regional Cooperation Organizations
The “2nd Islamic Development Bank Consultative Forum with Regional Cooperation Organizations in the OIC Region” was held on 14-16 May 2017 on the sidelines of the 42nd Islamic Development Bank Group's Annual Meeting in Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
The Forum aimed to establish and institutionalize a consultative gathering for policy dialogue between the IDB and the regional cooperation organizations in the OIC region with a view to seeking their support and cooperation in the implementation of the IDB’s regional cooperation and integration related programs/projects in different sub-regions.
The Forum was attended by 15 regional and international organizations from Africa, Asia and Arab regions. At the invitation of the President of IDBG, Mr. Kanan Nazarov, ECO Deputy Secretary General attended this event.
The Meeting was inaugurated with the opening remarks of Dr. Bandar Hajjar, the President of the Islamic Development Bank Group. The Representative of the IDB made a presentation on the outcomes of the First Meeting of the Consultative Forum held on 17 May 2016 in Jakarta-Indonesia. Since last Meeting of the Forum, IDB in partnership with UNECE has launched the first phase of the Transport Geographic Information System (GIS) Database covering 11 member countries in the Eurasia region. Mr. C. MacCormac, the IDB’s Consultant for preparation of the Regional Cooperation and Integration Strategy made a presentation and highlighted the role of regional cooperation organizations/regional economic communities in implementation of the IDBG’s RCI Strategy. The Meeting agreed to initiate inter-agency coordination between IDB and the RCOs/RECs concerned for drafting sub-regional programmes for implementation of the RCI Strategy.
The ECO Deputy Secretary General, Mr. Kanan Nazarov briefed the Forum about the “ECO Vision 2025” document adopted during the 13th ECO Summit meeting held in the Islamic Republic of Pakistan in 2017 and requested the IDB for assistance in implementation of the Vision, contributing financially to the “ECO Vision Fund” and strengthening the capacity of ECO as envisaged in its Vision document. He expressed support to the IDB's idea of institutionalizing consultative gatherings and holding forums on sub-regional level and further proposed the following regional projects/activities and initiatives for cooperation and IDB’s support and contribution: Implementation of “ECO Vision 2025”; ECO-UNIDO Trade Capacity Building Project (TCBP); Operationalization of priority railway and road corridors identified in the ECO Road and Railway Network Development Plans; Supporting ECO’s Project Coordination Unit in the follow up actions on customs provisions of Transit Transport Framework Agreement and modernization of Border Crossing Points; Feasibility Study on ECO Regional Electricity Market; Establishment of "ECO Clean Energy Center"; Establishment of “Clean energy corridor in ECO region” Serving as a catalyst in promoting Renewable Energy Sources; Developing a comprehensive regional strategy for sustainable tourism development in ECO region; Converting the project proposals in the area of Food Security into the bankable projects; and Establishment of the ECO Center of Excellence for Efficient Water Utilization for Agriculture (ECO-CEEWUA).
The Forum discussed the achievements in the last one year and came up with the activities in the OIC region to be carried out in 2017-2018. It was agreed that the ECO Secretariat’s road and railway networks maps will be included in the IDB’s GIS database. The meeting noted with appreciation the IDB’s initiative for implementation of the regional study project for commercialization of the Kazakhstan-Turkmenistan-Iran (KTI) Corridor. The outcomes of the studies will be reported to the next meeting of the Forum. Separate inter-agency meetings will be held with the ECO Secretariat and UNESCAP for commercialization of the KTI corridor. The Meeting also agreed to create GIS database of energy sector for common member countries with ECO, and other regional organizations. The Forum also welcomed the offer of the ECO Secretariat for organizing the First sub-regional (Euro-Asia Region) Inter-Agency Meeting of the Regional Cooperation Organizations in one of its Member Countries.