Tehran (IP)- Isiaka Abdulqadir Imam, Secretary-General of the Organization for Economic Cooperation, D-8, who is visiting Tehran, said he will do his best to activate a common visa program among member states.

Iran PressIran News: Isiaka Abdulqadir Imam, Secretary-General of the Organization for Economic Cooperation, D-8, who is visiting Tehran, said he would do his best to activate a common visa program among member states.

D-8, also known as Developing-8, is an organization for development cooperation among the following countries: Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Malaysia, Nigeria, Pakistan, and Turkiye.

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 living standards.

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 multilateral commitments of the member countries emanating from their membership in 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-Turkiye.

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Abdulqadir made the remarks during a visit to the Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines, and Agriculture (ICCIMA), where he met with ICCIMA President Gholam Hossein Shafei.

The visit to Iran is being made a week after a D-8 meeting in Istanbul, Turkey.   

Speaking during the meeting, the Iran Chamber of Commerce president complained that the D-8 member countries have failed to use the significant potential for cooperation.

Shafei said that the Iran Chamber of Commerce is ready to cooperate with the private sectors of other D-8 member states.

Hossein Salimi, the chairman of the Iran-Afghanistan Joint Chamber of Commerce who represented Iran in the last week's D-8 meeting in Istanbul, also spoke in the meeting and regretted the exchanges of commodities among D-8 member countries are much less than those of other countries.

Noting that he also has been cooperating with the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) for long years, Salimi referred to further exchanges among ECO member countries and said that the obstacles in the way of more interaction within D-8 have to be investigated.   

He said that except for Turkey, no other D-8 member country had made a significant investment in Iran, Iran's gas resources are the biggest in the world, and the government holds the second-largest oil resources globally.

Salimi believed that activating the member countries' private sectors could boost the volume of exchanges by 50%.

The D-8 secretary-general, for his part, regretted the insignificant trade exchanges among member countries and said that a $109 billion of exchanges for a 25-year-old organization with a 1.1 billion population is disgraceful.  

Abdulqadir Imam said that he aims to create further connections and cooperation among the chambers of commerce of D-8 member states.

He also proposed his plan for holding an annual joint trade exhibition of the member countries, which he believed could become operational next year.

The D-8 secretary-general also said that his other strategy is establishing a preferential trade scheme within the organization.

He also expressed hope for activating a common visa agreement among the D-8 member countries.

Abdulqadir Imam said that such an agreement already exists, but it needs to become operational.  

He said it is not acceptable that the economic activists be held in a long process for receiving visas.


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