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D8 countries to harness economic, trade potentials among members

The Organisation for Economic Cooperation, D-8, on Friday said it would continue to harness economic potentials to promote trade among its member states.

The D-8 member countries comprise Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Malaysia, Nigeria, Pakistan and Turkey.

The Secretary-General of the organization, M Isiaka Imam said this in a statement on the outcome of his official maiden meeting with the Prime Minister of Bangladesh, Sheik Hasina, at the Ganabhaban, in Dhaka.

The statement quoted Imam as saying, “We hope to further introduce new ideas for innovative partnership among D-8 Member States, who have the potential of emerging as a powerful economic bloc.

“Bangladesh being a founding Member State of D-8 organization seeks cooperation in six key priority areas, namely; trade, agriculture, industry, energy, transport and tourism towards enhancing the socio-economic development of Member Countries.

“There is the need for effective implementation of the D-8 Preferential Trade Agreement, to harness the immense economic potential for promoting trade among the Member States.”

The statement further quoted Hasina, who is also the current Chairperson of D-8, to have expressed the readiness of Bangladesh to provide Member States with exclusive facilities and land in the country’s Special Economic Zones.

The Prime Minister in the statement also invited Member States to leverage such an opportunity to further enhance economic cooperation in the organisation.

“Bangladesh has achieved success in the agricultural sector; our researchers have developed the drought and saline–tolerant variants of rice, we can share our experiences with D-8 countries in the agricultural sector.

“Bangladesh has also achieved tremendous feats in digital transformation and is prepared to share her experience with the Member States to enhance cooperation in the field of ICT.

“Our government is prepared to provide its ICT Parks to the D-8 Organization, to enhance cooperation in ICT,” Hasina said.

Hasina highlighted projects undertaken by the D-8 to include; D-8 International University at Hamedan, Iran, D-8 Network of Pioneers for Research and Innovation, D-8 Health and Social Protection Programme in Abuja, Nigeria.

Others are the D-8 Research Centre for Agriculture and Food Security in Faisalabad, Pakistan, adding that the Visa Agreement and D-8 Designated Airports initiatives were aimed at easing travel across member countries.

The statement also disclosed that the organisation would hold its 25th anniversary celebration in June, 2022. (NAN)

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