Last updated on April 19, 2014 at 1:20 EDT

Ukraine Chairs Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organization

December 18, 2012

KYIV, Ukraine, December 18, 2012 /PRNewswire/ –

Ukraine takes over the six month chairmanship of the Organization of Black Sea
Economic Cooperation (BSEC), starting January 1st, 2013. The previous head – Turkey -
handed over its duties to the Eastern European country on Sunday, December 15th. During
its chairmanship, Ukraine plans to promote economic cooperation between members and
strengthen the regional impact of the organization, focusing on infrastructure issues.

According to the minister of foreign affairs of Ukraine Kostyantyn Hryshchenko,
Ukraine will focus on the projects of the Black Sea Ring Highway and marine highways (the
Motorways of the Sea). “These projects are expected to bring the countries of the region
closer together and to have a positive impact on their economies through contributing to
the increase of trade and investments,” reads the official press release for the December
15th BSEC Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs, taking place in Istanbul, Turkey.

Other projects Ukraine plans to facilitate while at the helm of the BSEC include the
signing of the plurilateral agreement regarding multimodal shipments and introduction of
the direct ferry-railway transportation for cargo. Additionally, Ukraine will deal with
issues of trade, transport, energy, science, technology, tourism, environmental
protection, and combating organized crime, said Hryshchenko. He stressed the importance of
environmental problems evaluation, setting regional goals for sustainable development, as
well as solving problems of the nearshore regions and settlements.

The BSEC countries encompass an area of approximately 20 million square kilometers and
population of 330 million. The organization includes twelve member countries – Albania,
Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Georgia, Greece, Moldova, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Turkey,
and Ukraine. The latter was one of the eleven founding members of the BSEC, who signed the
respective declaration in June of 1992. The BSEC aims to “ensure peace, stability and
prosperity encouraging friendly and good-neighbourly relations in the Black Sea region,”
states official website for the organization.

In 2011, Ukraine chaired Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly (PACE). Throughout
the six months of its chairmanship Ukraine followed the objectives of the protection of
children’s rights, human rights and the rule of law. Moreover, the country contributed to
the strengthening of the European Court of Human Rights and development of local
democracy, which would provide citizens with broader opportunities to participate in local

SOURCE Worldwide News Ukraine

Source: PR Newswire