President Asif Ali Zardari announced that Pakistan would host the next Summit of the organisation in 2014 in Islamabad.
Attending the 12th ECO Summit in Baku, Azerbaijan, he called for unity to collectively defeat the mindset behind the assassination attempt of Pakistan’s daughter Malala Yousafzai. He also called for steps to break the nexus that exists between narco-financing and terrorism.
In his statement to the Summit, the President recalled the vision of the late Benazir Bhutto of a dynamic and prosperous region that is economically and culturally integrated and bound together by a rich common heritage.
The Summit approved Pakistani initiatives on the establishment of the Parliamentary Association of ECO and the operationalization of the ECO Trade Agreement by 1 January 2013 between the contracting parties. The Summit also welcomed the appointments of Iftikhar Hussain Arif as President of the Tehran-based ECO Cultural Institute with effect from 5 April 2013 and Manzoor Hussain Soomro as President of the Islamabad-based ECO Science Foundation.
On the sidelines of the Summit, the President held bilateral meetings with the Presidents of Azerbaijan and Iran and the Prime Minister of Turkey. The Summit was preceded by the meeting of the Council of Ministers which was attended by Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar.