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Asia plans Energy Forum

Source ::: The Peninsula

DOHA • Two new members, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, were welcomed as the 29th and 30th members of the Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD) at the Doha conference. Twelve core areas were identified for cooperation among ACD states during the two days of deliberations, according to the Declaration issued at the end of the conference yesterday.

The areas include energy where the ACD endorsed the formation of the ACD Energy Forum as the sole platform for cooperation in the field between member countries.

At the meeting, ministers welcomed the offer by Indonesia and the Philippines to coordinate work on drawing an ACD Energy Action plan which is expected to focus on promoting energy security, research and assessment on energy, energy infrastructure development and encouraging member countries to explore avenues of re-investing revenues accrued from energy trade in ACD countries to ensure overall growth of the Asian region. Kazakhstan will hold the 3rd ACD Energy Forum in 2007.

In the finance sector, Asian countries will mull the establishment of the Asian Bond Market to provide energy exporting firms an option to invest their surpluses in. Another sector mentioned in the Doha Declaration is agriculture where ministers endorsed a paper presented by China on the review and future proposals on agricultural cooperation under the ACD framework. The declaration endorsed a road-map proposed by Thailand as the basis for advanced cooperation between ACD countries on promoting tourism.

The establishment of an e-university to bridge digital divide in the continent and facilitate access to higher education for the benefit of all ACD members was supported by the ministers, through the Doha Declaration.

The declaration calls on ACD countries to join efforts to realise the goals of establishing an early warning and disaster relief system and endorse a paper on the subject presented by Russia. All ACD countries have been called on to enhance cooperation for alleviation of poverty and human resource development, among other things. The 6th ACD Ministerial Meeting will be held in South Korea next year while Kazakhstan will host it in 2008.

The Deputy Emir and Heir Apparent H H Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani with Chinese Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing at the Emiri Diwan yesterday. Zhaoxing was in Doha for the ACD meet.

[ Posted 05/25/2006 ]
Asia plans Energy Forum [ Posted 05/25/2006 ]
ACD meet to spur economy [ Posted 05/24/2006 ]
ACD forum opens today [ Posted 05/23/2006 ]
Towards a truly pan-Asian community [ Posted 05/23/2006 ]
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