AKIPRESS.COM - “Towards Regional Economic Connectivity – National Mechanisms for Trade and Transport Facilitation” was the title of an OSCE regional expert seminar that ended in Ashgabat on 22 May 2019.
The three-day event brought together national experts representing relevant institutions from the five Central Asian countries, as well as Afghanistan and Azerbaijan.
The OSCE Centre in Ashgabat organized the seminar as a follow-up to the 2018 OSCE Regional Ministerial Conference “Good Governance and Economic Connectivity - Best Practices within the OSCE region”. The discussions focused on trade facilitation, transport and transit management through harmonization of border and customs mechanisms, digitalization and public-private partnership.
Natalya Drozd, the Head of the OSCE Centre in Ashgabat, referred to the Ministerial Decision on strengthening good governance and promoting connectivity adopted in Hamburg in 2016, which states that “connectivity through transport and trade facilitation, including through measures at different levels of government, can enhance economic co-operation that is mutually beneficial and contribute to good-neighbourly relations, confidence-building and trust in the OSCE area”.
“The seminar reaffirms the OSCE’s consistent approach to the strengthening of the regional dialogue and economic connectivity and we believe it will contribute to the development of strategic recommendations,” Drozd said.
The seminar participants shared best national practices, challenges and opportunities in the area of trade facilitation and sustainable transit and transport management as well as reforms of customs and administrative procedures. International experts elaborated on innovations and technologies for sustainable transport and connectivity. The seminar participants produced an outcome document that provides a set of recommendations to further enhance regional economic connectivity and co-operation through trade and transport facilitations and harmonization of border and customs mechanisms.
The regional event will be followed by a national seminar on international standards in effective management of logistics and supply chains, which will take place on 23 and 24 May 2019. The seminar will bring together representatives from Turkmenistan’s Ministry of Finance and Economy and its Institute of Strategic and Sustainable Development, the Ministry of Industry and Communication, the Ministry of Trade and Foreign Economic Affairs, relevant transport agencies and other institutions. The event will address specific customs, regulatory and administrative procedures, and will discuss best practices and recommendations for further development and implementation of related transport and trade policies.