President Hassan Rouhani, delivering the opening speech at the 13th ECO summit in Islamabad on Wednesday, underlined that ECO member states would make great steps to enact ECO programs with cooperation and exchanging views.
“Heart of economy would beat in Asia in near future as the emerging powers would alter the main economic trends in the world turning the 21st century to Asia’s booming era,” Rouhani asserted.
Rouhani, noting the speculations made on global economy, said “the developments in position of some key ECO members would turn Asia once again to the West-East cross point; this future begins today and would show the world that ECO, not only has not lost its existence philosophy, but soon would be an important entity.”
Iranian president underlined that the unique position of ECO member states in fields such as transportation, energy and trade creates an ideal position for the Organization, adding “Economic Cooperation Organization has to play leading role in building the future of the region and needs to be well organized in this path.”
Yet, Rouhnai lamented, the level of cooperation is not satisfying; “member states should benefit from the organization’s capacity to enhance production and trade particularly in energy sector.”
“Through synergy, we could accomplish more precipitous growth in our countries,” said Rouhani adding “linking of ECO economies is subject to closer ties among our people and thereby barriers to these links need to be alleviated.”
He went on to stress that cultural commonalities marked an unmatched capital for economic collaborations though obstacles to visa issuance and transportation need to be tackled to provide possibility of joint flight for private sectors and economic activists of all countries.
The President said the message of ECO summit to entrepreneurs of member stated needs to coder longer-term horizons saying “road, rail, power grid as well as communication and telecommunication links offer best opportunity to economies of our countries in order to manifest common interests.”
At another part of his remarks, Rouhani said bright prospects for development and prosperity would never emerge as long as security remain endangered; “terrorism and Takfiri ideologies remain as a common threat to the world and necessitate coordination and cooperation in the face of the ongoing scourge.”
“Hundreds have been killed and millions of people have been displaced in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and Yemen,” underlined that official adding “these sufferings and pains will result in liability of the region in the face of internal conflicts and foreign intervention.”
He maintained that overcoming existing problems required repudiation of superiority-seeking attitudes and promotion of cooperation inside the region; “I deeply believe that the difficult goal can be accomplished provided that we join hands in solving problems rather than getting engaged in destructive competition.”
Hassan Rouhani highlighted that ECO was a proper ground for creation of a safer and more secure region for all nations. He stressed that Iran appreciated common interests and cooperation with neighbors as it held joint borders with six ECO members; “no barriers exist on deepening relations with ECO states.”
The official underlined that the fruitful experience gained through the JCPOA which was a win-win agreement has paved the path for boosting collaboration asserting “the end of a fake crisis over Iran’s peaceful nuclear program and reaching an international accord confirmed by the UN Security Council marked a great achievement not only for Iran but also for ECO.”
“In the light of the newly-emerged atmosphere, my government welcomes expansion of relations in various fields like transit and transportation, especially transit from Sarakhs to Bandar Abbas and Chabahar to the Incheboron, as well as banking and financial spheres, science and technology, agriculture and food security, culture, tourism and environment in addition to fight against natural disasters.”
He said Iran possessed the world’s greatest oil and gas reserves, young and expert human resources as well as scientific capabilities; “as such, we are ready to play a constructive role in deepening ties between ECO members.”
He voiced satisfaction towards the fact that Iran has established institutions and specialized agencies in a bid to provide proper grounds for realization of these objectives.
“Today’s decisions will shape the future of the region and prosperity of tomorrow is subject to the actions being taken today,” stressed the Iranian President concluding “strengthening of ties and common interests need to be emphasized while differenced need to be turned into points of strength.”