Foreign Secretary Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry Sunday highlighted the need to create a world-class logistics infrastructure within the Economic Coordination Organization region for speedy movement of goods and people at a reduced cost that would stimulate investment and growth.
Addressing the Senior Officials Meetings, commenced Sunday morning, he said that Pakistan has always attached immense importance to the organization and its objective as demonstrated by our active role in the ECO.
China-Pak Economic Corridor is a major initiative that would help achieve the core objectives of ECO, he said. This is a mega project which would benefit the entire region. The CPEC is anticipated as a game-changer not only in Pakistan-China context but it would also complement the economies of the entire neighbourhood, especially the ECO region, he added.
He said the 13th ECO Summit has adopted the topical theme of “Connectivity for Regional Prosperity” as its key focus. The economic integration and connectivity are the main pillars to galvanize economic growth, create job opportunities, expand trade, improve competitiveness and usher prosperity in the region.
He said the importance of trade figures show that ECO countries cannot be over-emphasized. Pakistan attaches great importance to its trade relations with the ECO countries and desires to significantly raise the volume of its trade with the member states, he added.
The ECO Vision 2025, he said, is an important document which would steer the Organization and serve as a roadmap for the success of the Organization in the coming years.
Its emphasis on infrastructure development, facilitation of transit among member states and free trade would offer potential and practical remedies for the region’s socio-economic development. “We see the adoption of Vision 2025 as a step in the right direction,” he said.
Peace in Afghanistan is very dear to us, he said. Pakistan is major affectee of the instability in Afghanistan and considers Afghanistan as its twin brother and fully supports the peace process in Afghanistan, he added.
“We welcome the upcoming ECO Special Meeting on Afghanistan under the ambit of ECO in Kabul this year and let me assure our Afghan brothers that we would continue to contribute to ECO’s efforts to provide assistance to Afghanistan.”
Chairing the session, he welcomed the members to Pakistan and said,”We are happy to host the 13th ECO Summit and look forward to advancing our mutual goals in the coming days, leading up to the Summit.”
Pakistan has always attached great importance to ECO and will remain in the forefront for the actualization of its agenda, he added.—APP