As part of technical preparations for IORA Summit in March 2017, Senior Officials of IORA Member States gathered at Royal Ambarrukmo Hotel, Yogyakarta, Indonesia, on 22-23 May 2016 for the Sixth Bi-annual meeting of the Committee of Senior Officials (CSO). The meeting was also attended by Secretary-General of IORA, Ambassador K.V Bhagirath, Special Agency (RCSTT), and Chair in Indian Ocean Studies (CIOS). The meeting was organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia with the support of the IORA Secretariat.
The meeting was officially opened by Ambassador Desra Percaya, Director General of Asia, Pacific & African Affairs, MOFA Indonesia, as the Chair of CSO. In his remarks, Ambassador Percaya welcomed all delegates to Yogyakarta and highlighted several issues that need guidance from CSO, among others: preparation for the 20th Anniversary of IORA; strengthening engagement of Dialogue Partners in IORA cooperation; IORA relations with international / regional organizations; extending IORA Sustainable Development Programme (ISDP) for 2017; and endorsement of IORA reports.
While the Secretary General of IORA, Ambassador KV Bhagirath reported progress on various projects and major recent developments in IORA cooperation to be considered by the CSO.
In two-day deliberation, the CSO endorsed the Terms of Reference (TOR) for the Establishment of an Ad Hoc Committee of the IORA Concord to give the mandate to officials to further discuss the first draft text of IORA Concord prepared by Indonesia. The 20th Anniversary of IORA in 2017 received special attention and tentative timelines were provided for the Leader’s Summit which would be held in Indonesia on 2-7 March 2017. The CSO meeting was held back-to-back with the 2nd Adhoc Committee of IORA Concord.
The Senior Officials also updated IORA calendar of events to be held along the year 2016, and considered new proposals by Member States on how to move forward on these proposals.
In his closing remarks, Ambassador Desra Percaya thanked the IORA Member States for their participation for making the meeting productive, and the IORA Secretariat for its support.
IORA Secretariat 23 May 2016