The 1st Meeting of the Heads of National Statistical Offices of ECO Member Countries was held on January 28-29, 2008, in Tehran, the Islamic Republic of Iran and was attended by the ECO Deputy Secretary-General, Heads of National Statistical Offices of the ECO member countries, the representatives of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP), Islamic Development Bank (IDB), Statistical, Economic and Social Research and Training Centre for Islamic Countries (SESRIC), the Deputies, Director Generals and Senior Experts of the Statistical Centre of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Dr. Sıdıka Başçı represented SESRIC thereat.
During the discussion on the Agenda Item “Collaboration with International Organisations on Development of Statistics in the ECO Region”, Dr. Sıdıka Basçı informed the delegates about the new Data Collection and Dissemination Software System which has recently been developed by the SESRIC, Statistical Capacity Building Training Programs of the Centre and the new initiative of the Centre on press releases from NSOs. The following decisions were taken by the delegates of the ECO National Statistical Offices:The representative of SESRIC informed that they had been organizing training programmes based on the needs of OIC Member States and in this connection the representative distributed a Questionaire among the remaining participants to get information about their training needs.
1. The meeting agreed, on the proposal of Kazakhstan, to prepare an ECO Business Plan for implementation of ECO Framework of Cooperation and Plan of Action on Statistics.
2. The member states were requested to convey their respective training needs in different areas as well as existing training facilities which could be used for capacity-building of the experts of member states.
3. The meeting welcomed the proposal of Iranian delegation to organise several workshops/seminars for statisticians from member states in different fields of statistics including design of statistical surveys, Mobile Electronic Device application in censuses, and sample surveys and compilation of National and Regional accounts based on SNA.
4. The meeting took note of the proposal of the Iranian delegation to establish a separate statistical unit in the ECO Secretariat, the proposal of Pakistan to establish a regional statistical centre and Azerbaijan's proposal to establish economic research and statistics centre in Baku to coordinate regional activities in the area of statistics.
5. The meeting agreed that a network of ECO NSOs as an institutional mechanism would be established.