20 September 2011
Statement by H.E. Dr. Ali Akbar Salehi
Minister of Foreign Affair of the Islamic Republic of Iran
at the Ministerial Meeting of the Asian Cooperation Dialogue
(New York -20 September 2011)
بسم الله الرحمن الرحیم
Ladies and Gentlemen,
At the outset, I would like to express my appreciation to H.E. Sheikh Mohammad Sabah Al-Salem Al-Sabah, Deputy Prime Minister and Minster of Foreign Affairs of the state of Kuwait for hosting this meeting.
I am very much hopeful that through active participation of the honorable ministers and representatives, this meeting and its follow-ups will produce favorable outcomes for the Member States of ACD.
Taking into account the time limit and the busy schedules of dear colleagues, I just reflect briefly on the achievements of ACD during the one-year presidency of the Islamic Republic of Iran (since our distinguished coordinator – Thailand- will present a detailed report very soon).
The 9th ACD Foreign Ministers’ Meeting was held in a cordial atmosphere in Tehran where the honorable ministers expressed their views on different issues of concern and interest. In its final Declaration emphasis was laid on the need for the member states to make further efforts to forge closer ties and cooperate more closely amongst themselves with a view to further promoting peace and prosperity of their nations.
The Ministers also agreed that in a bid to defuse the adverse impacts of the world economic and financial crises, the central banks of the member sates cooperate with each other on enhancing their financial, trade and investment activities and avoiding protectionist measures.
Unfortunately, with the influence exercised by some domineering countries over the international financial, monetary and economic institutions, the negative impacts of the financial crisis on developing countries are escalating, imposing more and more losses on them.
The Asian countries have to make decisions on their own destiny preventing interferences of others, who have intervened in every affairs of this vast continent for centuries; let’s Asia plays a deserving role in international political and economic issues according to its own capacities and principles. Asian countries deserve to play a more active role in the decision making process and in the international financial, monetary and trade structures, whose inefficacy and mismanagement are more obvious to the international community than ever before.
During Iran’s presidency, the 4th ACD High-level Study Group Meeting was also held in Tehran with important recommendations, which we expect to be taken by the upcoming Ministerial meeting in Kuwait.
It seems that since the inception of ACD, a number of projects have been proposed by the Prime Mover countries but the progress made in their implementation has been little. Therefore, it is advisable that the proposed projects be reprioritized and appropriate mechanisms be worked out for their implementation.
Another noteworthy event has been the first ACD Senior Officials’ Meeting on Cultural Cooperation that was held in Tehran on 9-10 May 2011, with the active participation of the member states. Given the fact that Asian countries as a whole enjoy a rich and diverse mosaic of cultures and traditions, coexisting throughout centuries, there are great potentials and capacities for cooperation among the member states in the cultural field. It is necessary for the present and future generations to preserve these time-honored bonds and to cooperate with each other in light of them.
Through a concerted effort and reprioritizing our plans and programs, we can give life to the idea of the emergence of a strong forum in the international and regional arena.
The Islamic Republic of Iran stands ready to make any contribution to enhance, strengthen and develop cooperation among the member states of the forum and to provide the necessary facilities for the rapid and effective implementation of its plans and programs.
In conclusion, I wish to avail myself of this opportunity to formally hand over the ACD Presidency to the State of Kuwait and assure the Kuwaiti brothers and sisters of our full support and cooperation during their chairmanship over ACD.
Thank you for your kind attention