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13th ECO summit begins in Islamabad


ISLAMABAD, MAR 01, (DNA) – The 13th Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) summit will begin in Islamabad today (Wednesday). The heads of states/governments and representatives from Azerbaijan, Iran, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Afghanistan, Uzbekistan,Tajikistan and Pakistan will attend the summit.

President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan, President of Iran Hassan Rouhani, Azerbaijan President Ilham Aliyev, President of Tajikistan Emomali Rahmon and Prime Minister of Kyrgyzstan Sooronbay Jeenbekov reached Islamabad on Tuesday to attend the summit. A very warm welcome was accorded to the heads of member states on their arrival in Islamabad.

Minister for States and Frontier Regions Abdul Qadir Baloch, Minister for Defence Khawaja Muhammad Asif, Minister for Planning and Development Ahsan Iqbal, Minister for Inter Provincial Coordination Riaz Hussain Pirzada and high officials received the dignitaries at the Noor Khan Airbase.

A smartly turned-out contingent of Pakistan Armed Forces presented guard of honour to the guests who were also presented with bouquets. National anthems were also played on the occasion.

Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif on Tuesday expressed his confidence that the Economic Cooperation Organization would soon develop into a key regional economic bloc.

“Synergizing our strengths, we can soon change our region’s destiny. The way forward for us has been laid out in ECO Vision 2025 in the form of pragmatic and tangible organisational targets,” the prime minister said in his video message released on the occasion.

President Mamnoon Hussain hosted a state banquet in honour of Heads of States/Governments participating in the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) summit at the Aiwan-e-Sadr. Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif was also present on the occasion.

Pakistan last hosted the third ECO Summit in Islamabad in May 1995.

ECO was established in 1985 by Pakistan, Iran and Turkey. Later on, Azerbaijan, Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan were also included.

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