ITFC oraganizes meeting to develop the Road Map for Enhancing Intra-OIC Trade

Azerbaijan, Baku, June 22 / Trend, N.Ismayilova /

The International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation (ITFC), a member of Islamic Development Bank Group (IDB Group), organized a two-day meeting to develop the Road Map for Enhancing   Intra-OIC trade as part of the 35th IDB Group Annual meeting programme held in Baku, Azerbaijan on the 21st- 22nd June, 2010.

The meeting was held under the patronage of H.E. Shahin Mustafayev Minister of Economic Development of Azerbaijan Republic, Chairman, IDB Group Board of Governors in the presence of H.E. Dr Ahmad Muhammad Ali, President of the IDB Group, H.E Sheikh Saleh Kamel, Secretary General of the Islamic Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI), the CEO of ITFC, H.E Dr. Waleed Al-Wohaib, H.E. Abdul Rahman Taha CEO, ICIEC and Deputy CEO, ITFC Eng. Hani Sonbol,

Many international and regional organizations participated in the meeting including  representatives of the General Secretariat of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC), the COMCEC Coordination Office, the Islamic Centre for Development of Trade (ICDT), the Statistical, Economic and Social Research and Training Centre for Islamic Countries (SESRIC), World Trade Organization (WTO), UNIDO, UNCTAD, UNDP, WCO and Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE).

The objective of the meeting was to discuss the ways to make the Road Map more effective to enhance intra-OIC trade through identifying new ways and mechanisms to enrich its implementation.

This meeting is based on the OIC target to increase the intra-OIC trade volumes from 15% in 2005 to 20% by 2015. In order to fulfil this objective, the IDB Group, the ITFC, in cooperation with COMCEC, SESRIC, ICDT and the Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges (TOBB) of Turkey, organized an Expert Group Meeting (EGM), held in Ankara in July 2008. The EGM prepared the Road Map on enhancing intra-OIC trade, which was adopted by 24th session of the COMCEC Ministerial Meeting.

The focus areas of the Road Map are: trade financing, trade promotion, trade facilitation, trade capacity building, promoting and developing strategic commodities originating from OIC Member States.

In his opening statement, stressing on the importance of enhancing intra OIC trade, H.E Shahin Mustafayev said "the development of cooperation between Azerbaijan and the OIC Member countries is a prioritized direction in our foreign relationship and has a strategic importance" he also added "Trade remains one of the major instruments for strengthening economic cooperation among OIC Member countries".

Highlighting IDB Group efforts in supporting and strengthening the intra-OIC trade, H.E. Dr. Ali said " It is well known that no country or region in the world has grown successfully without large expansion of its trade. For the IDB Group, trade has a very significant importance due to its critical role in economic growth and development. We strongly believe that the said Road Map will help achieve or even exceed the 20 % target by the year 2015".

It is noteworthy that IDB Group role in the Aid-for-Trade (AfT) initiative is one of global key initiatives aimed at strengthening the capacity of developing countries to participate in and benefit from international trade. The ITFC, a member of IDB Group, offered in cooperation with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), its full support to the preparation of AfT Road Map for the United Nations Special Program for the Economies of Central Asia and Afghanistan Region (SPECA Region).

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