Today, on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation (BSEC), Turkey will host the leaders of member countries as the rotating chair of the organization under the auspices of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.
According to a written statement released by the Presidency, a declaration that highlights the 25th anniversary of the organization will be drawn up by the leaders of BSEC member countries. It will then be adopted at the summit that will elaborate on the regional economic partnerships and structural reforms.
As part of the summit, a special meeting of BSEC foreign ministers was held yesterday in Istanbul.
Speaking at the event, Deputy Minister Tuğrul Türkeş underscored that sustainable development has been identified as one of the BSEC's main themes during Turkey's term chairmanship.
"The declaration will emphasize sustainable development, which has been enriched with the contribution of participants," Deputy Türkeş said.
Also delivering an address at the event, Ambassador Michael Christides, the BSEC's secretary-general, said the declaration, expected to be acknowledged at the summit, will convey a strong and loud message that the BSEC is here, it is adapting to changing circumstances, and it is reacting positively and in a timely way to new challenges.
"And that it is ready to lead the way to turn our geostrategic region into an area of cooperation, stability and prosperity," Christides added.
The BSEC secretary-general also said the Council of Foreign Ministers, the organization's highest decision-making organ, will take stock of efforts so far to improve its effectiveness and sketch a road map for the years to come.
The Black Sea Economic Cooperation came in to existence as a unique and promising model of multilateral political and economic initiative with the signing of the Istanbul Summit Declaration and the Bosporus Statement by the heads of state and government of the countries in the region, on June 25, 1992.
Aiming at fostering interaction and harmony among its members, as well as to ensure peace, stability and prosperity, encouraging friendly and good-neighborly relations in the Black Sea region, today the BSEC serves as a forum for cooperation in a wide range of areas for its 12 Member States: Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Georgia, Greece, Moldova, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Turkey and Ukraine.