Cooperation Organization (ECO), is an intergovernmental regional
organization established in 1985 by Iran, Pakistan and Turkey for the
purpose of promoting economic, technical and cultural cooperation among
the Member States.
is the successor organization of Regional Cooperation for Development
(RCD) which remained in existence since 1964 up to 1979.
1992, the Organization was expanded to include seven new members,
namely: Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, Republic of Azerbaijan,
Republic of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Republic of Tajikistan,
Turkmenistan and Republic of Uzbekistan. The date of the Organization’s
expansion to its present strength, 28th November, is being observed as the ECO Day.
ECO region is full of bright trading prospects. Despite its young age,
ECO has developed into a thriving regional organization. Its
international stature is growing. Nevertheless, the organization faces
daunting challenges with respect to realization of its objectives and
importantly, the region is lacking in appropriate infrastructure and
institutions which the Organization is seeking to develop, on priority
basis, to make full use of the available resources in the region.
the past 12 years the member states have been collaborating to
accelerate the pace of regional development through their common
endeavors. Besides shared cultural and historic affinities, they have
been able to use the existing infrastructural and business links to
further fortify their resolve to transfer their hopes and aspirations
into a tangible reality. ECO has embarked on several projects in
priority sectors of its cooperation including energy, trade,
transportation, agriculture and drug control.
Islamic State of Afghanistan, Azerbaijan Republic, Islamic Republic of
Iran, Republic of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Islamic Republic of
Pakistan, Republic of Tajikistan, Republic of Turkey, Turkmenistan and
Republic of Uzbekistan
Finance Source: Member contributions.
Key Executive: Secretary General.
International staff of the General Secretariat of ECO includes the
Secretary General, 3 deputy secretaries general, 6 directors, 3
assistant directors and other professionals and technical,
administrative and support personnel. The total number of staff is over
Click here for a brief history of Economic Cooperation Organization.
Council of Ministers ( COM ) is the highest policy and decision-making
body and is composed of Ministers of Foreign Affairs or such other
representatives of the Ministerial rank as may be designated by the
Government. The council of Ministers meets at least once a year by
rotation among the Member States.
Council of Permanent Representatives (CPR) is consisting of the
Permanent Representatives/Ambassadors of the Member States accredited to
the Islamic Republic of Iran as well as to the ECO and the Director
General for ECO Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the
Islamic Republic of Iran.
Regional Planning Council (RPC) is composed of the Head of the Planning
Organization of the Member States or such other representatives of
General Secretariat consists of six Directorates under the supervision
of the Secretary General and his Deputies. Two Specialized Agencies and
six Regional Institutes are acting under the supervision of the General
Sustainable economic development of Member States;
removal of trade barriers and promotion of intra- regional trade;
Greater role of ECO region in the growth of world trade; Gradual
integration of the economies of the Member States with the world
of transport & communications infrastructure linking the Member
States with each other and with the outside world;
Economic liberalization and privatization;
Mobilization and utilization of ECO region's material resources;
Effective utilization of the agricultural and industrial potentials of ECO region;
cooperation for drug abuse control, ecological and environmental
protection and strengthening of historical and cultural ties among the
peoples of the ECO region; and
Mutually beneficial cooperation with regional and international organizations.
Principles of Cooperation
Sovereign equality of the Member States and mutual advantage;
Linking of national economic, development plans with ECO's immediate and long-term objectives to the extent possible;
efforts to gain freer access to markets outside the ECO region for the
raw materials and finished products of the Member States;
utilization of ECO institutions, agreements and cooperative
arrangements with other regional and international organizations
including multilateral financial institutions;
Common endeavors to develop a harmonized approach for participation in regional and global arrangements;
Realization of economic cooperation strategy; and Exchanges in educational, scientific, technical and cultural fields.