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Energy Charter Secretariat contributes to Eurasian Foreign Ministers’ dialogue

On 17 April 2018, the Energy Charter Secretariat participated in the 23rd Council of Ministers (COM) Meeting of the Economic Cooperation Organisation (ECO) which was hosted by the government of Tajikistan, in Dushanbe. The ECO is an international organisation comprised of ten countries in the Eurasian region, namely Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. Eight of these ten countries are also full members of the Energy Charter Treaty (ECT), while the remaining two – Iran and Pakistan – are both ECT observers. ECO encourages the development of a diversity of interstate economic projects and, like the International Energy Charter, is a major proponent of regional cooperation. 

The Dushanbe ECO Council of Ministers brought together the foreign ministers of ECO member states in a dialogue on the enhancement of regional economic links, including efforts to bolster trade and investment. This high-level roundtable dialogue of ECO foreign ministers addressed regional issues such as energy, water, transport, communications, as well as people to people contact. The 23rd COM followed on from the ECO Heads of State Summit which was held in Islamabad, Pakistan, a little over a year earlier. The International Energy Charter became an observer of ECO in 2017, while ECO is also an observer of the Charter. Dr Marat Terterov, Head of the Energy Charter Knowledge Centre, contributed to the ECO Dushanbe Council of Ministers by outlining areas of cooperation that has evolved between the Energy Charter and ECO secretariats. He also reminded the audience of gathered ministers of the role that the Energy Charter plays in Eurasian regional energy security, particularly in the area of investment, trade, transit and energy efficiency