The UN Special Programme for the Economies of Central Asia (SPECA)
was launched in 1998 to strengthen sub-regional cooperation in Central Asia and its integration into the world economy.
The members of SPECA
the Republic of Azerbaijan
the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan
the Republic of Kazakhstan
4. the Kyrgyz Republic
the Republic of Tajikistan
the Republic of Turkmenistan
7. the Republic of Uzbekistan.
It is jointly supported and implemented by the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) and UN Economic Commission for Europe (ECE).
The Tashkent Declaration on the SPECA
of 26 March 1998 which launched the Programme states that the “objective of the Programme is to support the Central Asian states in developing their cooperation, creating incentives for economic development and integration into the economies of Europe and Asia”.
The SPECA Governing Council
is the supreme management body which provides overall policy guidance to the work carried out within the SPECA framework, oversees the work of the SPECA Project Working Groups, take stock of progress achieved, identifies priorities for the future and approve the SPECA work plans. It is constituted of senior policy makers at the level of Vice-Prime Ministers or Ministers from the SPECA member countries, UNESCAP and UNECE Executive Secretaries.
The SPECA Coordinating Committee
is a subsidiary body to the Governing Council, which is responsible for maintaining regular communication among the SPECA member countries as well as regular coordination of activities within the SPECA framework. It is composed of Deputy National Coordinators at the level of Deputy Foreign Minister as well as representatives of UNESCAP and UNECE.
The implementation of the SPECA programme started with identifying priority programme areas of cooperation. In each of those a leading country is defined, and respective Project Working Groups (PWGs) were formed. There is a number accomplished and on-going projects and activities under the SPECA framework. There is an impressive progress in several areas, like water, energy, transport. The PWGs carry out monitoring of the projects' implementation and make recommendations on further activities after completion of a project. They also define the parameters of the projects with the account of the needs of the interested countries, the possibilities of attracting the external and internal funds and the work performed in the respective area by other international organizations in the SPECA member countries.
According to the decision taken by the SPECA Governing Council (27 June 2006, Baku) the present status of the co-chairs of the PWGs as follows:
- PWG on Transport and Border Crossing – Kazakhstan
- PWG on Water and Energy Resources - Kyrgyzstan
- PWG on ICT for Development – Azerbaijan
- PWG on Statistics – Tajikistan
- PWG on Trade – Tajikistan
- PWG on Gender and Economy – Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan.
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