Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said the Islamic Republic is committed to continue its “unwavering support” for the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO).
“The Islamic Republic of Iran is committed to continue its unwavering support for the ECO. We believe that the Economic Cooperation Organization is by far the best option for cooperation among the countries of the Region,” Zarif, the outgoing chairman of the ECO’s Council of Ministers (COM), said on Tuesday addressing the opening session of the 11th meeting of the COM in Islamabad, Pakistan.
He added, “We firmly believe ECO-sponsored regionalism not only improves prospects for individual and collective economic development, but enhances political and security relations among the Member States”.
The Iranian minister is in the Pakistani capital to also attend the 13th meeting of the ECO heads of state, which is due to be held in Islamabad on March 1.
Following is the full text of Zarif’s speech at the event:
In the name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
Fellow Ministers; Distinguished Secretary General Excellencies; Ladies and Gentlemen
At the outset, allow me to express my profound appreciation for your participation in the 33rd Council of Ministers of our Economic Cooperation Organization. I would like to begin by paying tribute to the people and the Government of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan for hosting this meeting and for the excellent arrangements and gracious hospitality extended to us.
Since last COM Meeting, ECO’s existing frameworks and networks for regional cooperation continued to function; thanks to the ECO Member States, ECO Secretariat and our partner organizations. Distinguished Secretary General has extensively elaborated in his Report on the sectoral achievements and challenges that the Organization has experienced since the 32nd COM Meeting. I would like to express my heartfelt thanks to him and his colleagues in the Secretariat for their dedication and efforts towards implementation of the ECO overall agenda.