The 24th Meeting of ECO Council of Ministers (COM) held at Antalya, the Resort City of Turkey on 9 November 2019

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The 24th Meeting of the Economic Cooperation Orgnization Council of [Foreign] Ministers (ECO COM) was held at Antalya, the Resort City of Republic of Turkey. The meeting was opened by H.E. the First Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Tajikistan (Chairman of the 23rd COM) and was participated by the Ministers/Deputy Ministers for Foreign Affairs of all the ECO member states as well as representatives of Observers and Heads of ECO Specialized Agencies including ECO Science Foundation (ECOSF).

At the beginning of the meeting, a documentary film was shown on the activities of ECO. First Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Tajikistan H.E. Mr. Khusrav Noziri spoke about the recent projects with the member states. Then, the ECO Secretary General Hadi Soleimanpour presented his report and statement. After the reports, the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Republic of Turkey was elected to chair the meeting. Then the national anthem of Turkey was played and the Chair of the organization moved from Tajikistan to Turkey. From then on the meeting was presided over by Turkish Foreign Minister H.E. Mr. Mevlüt Çavusoglu. Mr. Çavusoglu welcomed all the ministers, deputy minister, observers, head of specialliazed agencies and other dignitaries for attending the important meeting of COM at Antalya. Later, he commenced the proceedings of the meeting item-wise and decisions were made.

The Head of Delegates of ECO member countries, Observers and Specialised Agencies made their statements and committed to support the organization for achieving its goals and objectives. Azerbaijan, Iran and Turkey were represented by the Ministers of Foreign Affairs; whereas, rest of the member countries were represented by the Deputy Ministers or Ambassadors. On behalf of Pakistan the Parliamentary Secretary for Foreign Affairs H.E. Ms. Andleeb Abbas participated in the meeting.

Preceding the ECO COM meeting, a Senior Officials Meeting (SOM) was held on 8 November 2019. The task of SOM was to prepare and finalize the agenda for the COM meeting.

On behalf of ECOSF, the Foundation’s President Prof. Manzoor Hussain Soomro participated in the COM and SOM meetings. Prof. Soomro highlighted the role of science, technology and Innovation as well as science education in economic development of the region and pointed out some of the impediments in pursuing the Organization’s goals. He also shared with the meeting, the stronger international collaboration of the Foundation. President ECOSF requested the member states that have not yet ratified the Charter and its Additional Protocol of the Foundation, to complete the process of ratification to make the foundation more vibrant and strong. The Council while reviewing the progress of ECOSF lauded the activities of the Foundation and endorsed its progress with appreciation.

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