In Article 30 of the amended İzmir Agreement, which is the Statute of the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) - whose founding members are Turkey, Iran and Pakistan, it was envisaged to establish a Chamber of Commerce and Industry among its member countries.
In this context, it was decided to establish an "ECO Chamber of Commerce and Industry" in order to carry out activities in the fields of commercial, industrial and economic cooperation among the member countries. Among TOBB, ICCIMA (Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture) and FPCCI (The Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry) - which are the top institutions of the Chambers of Commerce and Industry in their respective countries - the ECO Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ECO CCI) was established in the context of the Protocol signed in Istanbul on 4-5 April 1990 at the level of Presidents.
Although ECO CCI could not have been operating actively, it has continued its existence for many years with the rotating presidency system. The consensus could not have been reached about the establishment of the Permanent Secretariat till today.
At the 7th General Assembly of the Chamber held in Kabul / Afghanistan on April 20, 2004, and the ECO Trade and Investment Conference held in Kabul on 9-10 November, 2005 at the ECO CCI's 10th Executive Committee Meeting, the amendment of the status of the ECO Chamber and the location of the Permanent Secretariat have been negotiated. Until 2007, the Afghanistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry continued to hold the rotating presidency of the ECO CCI.
The Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey undertook the presidency of the ECO CCI between the years of 2007 and 2010.
During the Presidency period carried out by our union’s President Mr. M. Rifat Hisarciklioglu;
• ECO CCI, which has been inactive for many years, has become activated.
• On July 24, 2008, ECO CCI Statute was completed, the institutional infrastructure of the Chamber was established and the working procedures and principles were determined.
• The website of the Chamber was created and activated.
• With the aim of improving efficiency in the works of the Chamber, five technical committees that bring the related experts - together (Industry and Investments, Transportation, Trade Facilitation, Tourism and Arbitration Committees) were established. ECO CCI Women Entrepreneurs Council was also established in order to develop women entrepreneurship.
• During this period, all meetings and activities of the Chamber were successfully carried out on time.
• In addition to all these, training programs have been implemented with the participation of the representatives of the private sector and public institutions of member countries with the initiative of our Union, for the aim of the development of the Chamber’s capacity for the institutionalization of the regional private sector.
• Between 5th and 9th April 2010 in Istanbul, the public and private sector representatives of ECO CCI member countries got theoretical training on the structure and functioning of the Chamber system in Turkey, the global economic crisis, the improvement of the investment climate, the role of investment support agencies, Turkey's relations with the ECO countries, build-operate-transfer model and the modernization of border gates, and ECO Trade and Development Bank activities.
• Furthermore, visits to Organized Industrial Zones, Free Zones, Business Development Centers and Techno-parks were organized to get information on the spot.
• At the 11th General Assembly Meeting held on January 19, 2011, the term presidency was transferred to Iran.
• All of the committee meetings, together with the 16th Executive Council of the Chamber, were held in Tehran on November 19-22, 2011, after our union’s term for presidency was transferred to Iran.
• The 12th General Assembly of the Chamber, the 17th Executive Council and all the committee meetings were held in Ankara on 5-7 November 2012 with our hosting, and in the 12th General Assembly and the 17th Executive Committee meetings on November 7, the Minister of Development H. E. Cevdet Yılmaz also attended and gave a speech.
• 18th Executive Council and Committee Meetings were held in Iran on October 8-10, 2013. 19th Executive Council and 13th General Assembly Meetings were held in Karachi on 1-4 September 2014, and the presidency was transferred to Pakistan in these meetings.
• The first meetings of Pakistan's presidency term were held in Ankara on December 21-23, 2015 with our union’s hosting. H. E. Cevdet Yilmaz gave a speech at the 20th Executive Council and the 14th General Assembly.
• The 21st Executive Council and the committee meetings were held on 16-18 August 2016 in Tehran.
• 15th General Assembly, 22nd Executive Council, and the committee meetings of the ECO CCI held on March 3-5, 2017, in Iran.
• In the forthcoming period, changes in the Statute of ECO CCI will be carried out in the and it is evaluated that the proposal for shifting to the Permanent Secretariat may be in the agenda again for ECO CCI.
• Furthermore, it is observed that the participation of Chambers of the Central Asian countries is limited especially to the meeting that were carried out outside Istanbul, and it is evaluated that it will be beneficial to provide financial support by the ECO Secretariat to ensure the attendance of representatives of the Central Asian countries.
• The term of ECO CCI secretariat since 2018, June transferred from Pakistan (FPCCI) to TOBB, and Mr. Adem KULA was appointed as new Secretary General of ECO CCI for the terms 2018-2021
• In pursuance of the decision taken in the joint meeting of 24th Executive Committee and 16th General Assembly the next session of the meetings of ECO-CCI’s Specialized Committees and 25th Executive Committee have been scheduled to be held in Afghanistan. However, upon the proposal of ECO CCI President and with the correspondence carried out by the Secretary General of ECO CCI, Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Republic of Uzbekistan hosted the meetings of Specialized Committees and 25th Executive Committee Meeting in Tashkent, Republic of Uzbekistan on 12–14 December 2018.