Pakistan is active in D-8 Countries

Developing-8 ((D-8), is an organization for development cooperation among the following countries: 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 the 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 the international level, and improve standards of living.

D-8 is a global arrangement rather than a regional one, as the composition of its members reflects. Organization for Economic Cooperation (D-8) is a forum with no adverse impact on bilateral and multi-lateral commitments of the member countries, emanating from their membership to other international or regional organizations.

Ambassador Isiaka Abdulqadir Imam from Nigeria is currently the Secretary General of the D-8 Organization with its Secretariat based in Istanbul-Turkey.

Idea Behind D-8 Establishment:-

The idea of cooperation among major Muslim developing countries was mooted by Prof. Dr. Necmettin Erbakan, the then Prime Minister of the Republic of Turkey, during a Seminar on “Cooperation in Development” which was held in Istanbul in October 1996. The group envisioned cooperation among countries stretching from South East Asia to Africa. Representatives from Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Malaysia, Nigeria, and Pakistan attended the Seminar. This conference was the first step towards the establishment of D-8 and it was only after a series of preparatory meetings that D-8 was set up officially and began its activities with the Istanbul Declaration issued at the end of the summit of Heads of State and Government held in Istanbul on June 15, 1997.

Pakistan is active in D-8:-

Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Ms. HinaRabbani Khar, called for creating a Private Sector Coordination Facility to boost economic cooperation amongst the Developing-Eight (D-8) countries. The Minister of State spoke virtually to the 20th Session of the D-8 Council of Foreign Ministers, hosted by Bangladesh today in a hybrid format.

The Minister of State called for creating a conducive environment for trade through facilitative legal frameworks, and equal opportunities for investment and business. She underscored that Pakistan’s vision of geo-economics had socio-economic growth, connectivity, and development at its core. Through cooperation and partnerships, the D-8 countries can realize their true economic potential. The Minister of State highlighted that Pakistan’s location afforded critical overland and maritime connectivity to key regions of Asia – Central Asia, South Asia, the Middle East, and China – that made Pakistan geo-politically among the most pivotal states in the world. We were confident that through the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), this geo-political asset will rapidly turn into a geo-economic dividend, she underlined.

The Foreign Minister of Bangladesh, in his capacity as the Chair of the Council of Ministers, presided over the meeting. Foreign Ministers of Türkiye and Iran, and Minister of State of Nigeria, alongside senior officials from Egypt, Indonesia, and Malaysia, also participated in the meeting.

The Council meeting was preceded by the 45th Session of the D-8 Commission which adopted a series of major decisions building on the progress achieved. One of the key decisions taken by the Council was to fully operationalize the Preferential Trade Agreement by 31 October 2022 with a view to achieving the intra-D-8 trade target of US $500 billion agreed under the Decennial Road Map 2020-30.

In recognition of the role of trade in enhancing meaningful economic cooperation, and promoting financial and payment systems, the meeting also agreed to operationalize within the next two years, the D-8 Payment Card system, D-8 Clearing House, D-8 Qualified Industrial, and Economic Zones, D-8 Creative Economy and Financial Center, D-8 Halal Food Sector Cooperation, and D-8 Barter Trading System.

The Ministers agreed on the need to enhance financial and human resources for the D-8 Secretariat. The meeting also tasked the Secretariat to further review project proposals for financial support by the D-8Member States.

The Meeting acknowledged with appreciation the desire of the Republic of Azerbaijan to become a member of the D-8. The Ministers agreed to hold a Special Session of the D-8 Commission in October this year to make final recommendations with regards to the criteria for the accession of new Member States to the D-8. A report to this effect will be considered for adoption by the next Council of Ministers Session.

The D-8 Group, established in Istanbul on 15 June 1997, includes Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Malaysia, Nigeria, Pakistan, and Turkey. The Year 2022 marks the Twenty-Fifth Anniversary of the establishment of D-8.

Prof. Engr. Zamir Ahmed Awan
Prof. Engr. Zamir Ahmed Awan
Prof. Engr. Zamir Ahmed Awan, Sinologist (ex-Diplomat), Non-Resident Fellow of CCG (Center for China and Globalization), National University of Sciences and Technology (NUST), Islamabad, Pakistan.