Statement by Ambassador Tacan İldem, Permanent Representative of Turkey, 2014 Economic and Environmental Dimension Implementation Meeting

Tacan İldem 23.10.2014
Thank you, Mr. Chairperson.

At the outset, let me join the previous speakers in extending our heartfelt condolences and sympathy to our Canadian friends for the losses of life in the recent heinous terrorist attacks.

I would like to express my pleasure to take part in the 2014 Economic and Environmental Dimension Implementation Meeting. This year the meeting provides us an excellent opportunity to discuss and share best practices on a range of important issues.

I believe that the meeting will help us take better stock of the work done in these important areas on the second dimension. I therefore express our gratitude and appreciation to all who have had a share in organizing this event. I would also like to express our thanks to the keynote speakers for their insightful presentations.

The trends of globalization and technological improvements in recent decades have fundamentally altered the global security environment. The new circumstances compel us to also take non-traditional threats to security into consideration. It is in line with this understanding that economic and environmental matters have always been an integral part of the OSCE agenda, reflecting the Organization’s comprehensive approach to security. With this understanding we consider that the potential of the second dimension should be utilized in a better fashion to address the new challenges to security. We believe that the Economic and Environmental Dimension Implementation Meetings provide a significant opportunity to uncover this potential.

The OSCE can maintain its relevance only if it can continuously adapt and re-adapt itself to ever-changing contemporary challenges and problems. In this regard, we believe that the best response to threats of corruption, money-laundering and the financing of terrorism lies in strong international cooperation on the basis of common and shared responsibility with a cross-dimensional and multi-layered approach.

This is of great importance, as good governance at the international, national and local levels has a significant bearing on security, stability and prosperity in the OSCE region. Deficiency in governance such as ineffective institutions, corruption, weak civil society, lack of transparency and accountability in the public and private sectors will impede sustainable economic, social and environmental development and the relevant country’s capacity to effectively address economic and environmental challenges.

We consider the 2012 Dublin Declaration on Strengthening Good Governance and Combatting Corruption, Money-Laundering and the Financing of Terrorism as one of the milestones in OSCE’s work in this area. We commend Dr. Yiğitgüden, the Coordinator of the OSCE Economic and Environmental Activities, and his able team as well as the Field Operations for the support they have brought for the proper implementation of the 2012 Dublin Declaration. But, having said this, I will return to a point I made earlier and call for the review and re-assessment of our overall performance so far under this important document.

Globalization has impacted the security environment in ways not seen before, diminishing the traditional role of the state as the chief security actor by, among others, hastening and intensifying the interaction within and between civil society, private sector and the media again at both the national and international levels. The establishment of a robust and well-designed cooperation among these actors would bolster our efforts in combating the multifaceted problems relating to security that require long-term political commitment and resolute action at all levels, as well as coordination among different stakeholders.

Finally, I am also pleased that the water cooperation issue is part of the agenda. A vital resource for people, ecosystems and the development of countries water should be subject to much more efficient use in the 21st century. Turkey has been realizing numerous programmes in this respect. We consider water as a source of cooperation with our neighbours. The Turkish trans-boundary water policy can be outlined as Turkey is for the utilization of the trans-boundary rivers in an equitable, reasonable and optimal manner in the interest of the riparian States.

Since trans-boundary waters have their own specific characteristics and peculiarities in terms of regional, economic, social, cultural and historic aspects; trans-boundary water issues should be handled first and foremost among the riparian countries. Possible contributions by third party parties and entities may be envisaged once such a process is completed.

Let me conclude by underlining once again the importance of keeping pace with the dynamic rhythm of global change by constantly updating our areas of focus and our toolbox at the OSCE. We would draw also in this area from the distinct advantage of having someone with an energetic disposition as Ambassador Algayerova at the helm of our second dimension Committee.

I look forward to a very successful EEDIM which will prove to be beneficial to bolstering our work and cooperation in the second dimension at a variety of levels.

Thank you.