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Economic Cooperation Organization

Member States: Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Iran, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan

The Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) is the successor of what was the Regional Cooperation for Development (RCD), founded in 1964, which ended activities with the Islamic revolution in Iran in 1979. However, in 1985 Iran, Pakistan and Turkey revived it under its new brand, the ECO. By the fall of 1992, the ECO expanded to include seven new members: Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.

The ultimate objective of the ECO is to establish a single market for goods and services, much like the European Union.

The Economic Cooperation Organisation Trade Agreement (ECOTA) was signed on 17 July 2003. ECO Trade Promotion Organization (TPO) is an organization for trade promotion among member states located in Iran (2009). According to the agreement between the members of the CEE, a common market for trade should have been established as early as 2015. This remains wishful thinking for the time being..

The outcome of the organisation remains modest. The member states are lacking appropriate infrastructure and institutions which the ECO is primarily seeking to develop, to make full use of the available resources in the region and provide sustainable development for the member nations.