Food and energy security, trade, tourism and climate change are some of the areas that will get focus at the 20th session of the Council of Ministers of D-8, also known as Developing-8, to be hosted by Bangladesh on July 27.
While briefing the media on Sunday, Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen said energy and food security is a global issue that will be discussed at the meeting as there is much scope for cooperation in these areas.
“We are giving much importance on food security. Food security issue will be discussed largely. We would like to share our expertise with other friends. There is a much scope for cooperation,” he said.
On energy security, Momen said it is being discussed everywhere and it remains a hot topic globally. “We must ensure energy security. It will be discussed.”
He said though some of the D-8 countries showed maturity in the tourism sector, Bangladesh has scope to do more and gain through cooperation.
Momen said though the intra-trade is growing the D-8 countries can do more on this front.
“We will discuss on how the trade can further be expanded,” he said, adding that the intra-trade is likely to be boosted through proper implementation of the D-8 Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA).
The D-8 Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA), signed on 13th May, 2006 in Bali, Indonesia is regarded as one of the most tangible outcomes of D-8 cooperation in trade.
The agreement has been a manifestation of the mutual desire to deepen trade relations among Member States and marked the beginning of economic dialogue at a higher level.
The PTA, after many rounds of discussions and multilateral negotiations, became effective as of 25th August, 2011 onwards.
The foreign minister said the D-8 meeting to be held on July 27 will take decision about Azerbaijan’s membership.
He said some foreign ministers of the D-8 countries will be represented by their colleagues at the meeting.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is expected to inaugurate the meeting joining it virtually, Momen said.
Bangladesh will also host the 45th session of the D-8 Commission from July 25 to 26.
The D-8, also known as Developing-8, is an organization for development cooperation among Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Malaysia, Nigeria, Pakistan and Turkey.
The establishment of D-8 was announced officially through the Istanbul Declaration of Summit of Heads of State/Government on June 15, 1997.
The objectives of D-8 Organization for Economic Cooperation are to improve member states’ position in the global economy, diversify and create new opportunities in trade relations, enhance participation in decision-making at international level, and improve standards of living.