Turkey to focus on energy during D-8 presidency

Published 19.10.2017 21:44

Turkey wants to enhance energy trade and cooperation in the fight against global challenges among the Developing-8 (D-8) states, the country's foreign minister said yesterday at the 17th session of the D-8 Council in Istanbul.

"We can develop energy trade among the [D-8] states. We can altogether realize joint energy investments," Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu said. "We can produce projects together in fields such as hydrocarbon exploration and production activities."

Turkey plans to focus on "sustainable development" during its coming D-8 presidency, Çavuşoğlu said.

"Energy is especially at the top of the fields upon which we can cooperate," he added. Turkey will take over from Pakistan on Friday, which will mark the 20th anniversary of the international organization. The international summit, with the theme Expanding Opportunities through Cooperation, will be attended by Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari and Azerbaijani leader İlham Aliyev.

Pakistani Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Iran's first Vice President Eshaq Jahangiri and Indonesian Vice President Jusuf Kalla will also participate.

Turning to global challenges, from poverty to racism, from mass migrations to drought across the world, the foreign minister said, "Many crises, from Syria to Yemen, from Iraq to Afghanistan, from Palestine to Myanmar, are happening near the D-8 countries."

"Against all these threats, we, as D-8 countries, need to cooperate more effectively," he added. "During our D-8 presidency, we will exert efforts to make our organization more effective and productive," he said, calling for support from member countries. Pakistani Foreign Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif said his country had held the chair beyond the normal period of two years, since 2012.

The minister said Pakistan held a successful chairmanship and had worked to make the organization more visible during its presidency. He explained that the theme of the summit was very proper, saying, "It reflects the objectives of the economic organization."

The minister said the D-8 was entering a new phrase and all member states needed to be much more resolved to reach goals in major areas of cooperation - industry, agriculture and food security, energy, trade, transportation, and tourism.

"Pakistan is fully aware of the potential [of the organization], [...] and it is ready to extend full support and cooperation," Asif said.

The Developing-8, better known as the D-8, was founded by then Turkish Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan in 1997 through the Istanbul Declaration of Summit of Heads of State/Government.

Formed as an economic alliance, the body consists of Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Malaysia, Nigeria, Pakistan and Turkey.

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