Energy is the primary sector upon which Turkey will work on during upcoming D-8 chairmanship, says Turkish foreign minister.

Turkey wants to enhance energy trade and cooperation in the fight against global challenges among the Developing-8 states, the country’s foreign minister said on Thursday.

Speaking at the 17th session of the D-8 Council in Istanbul, where Anadolu Agency is the official photographer, Mevlut Cavusoglu said: “We can develop energy trade among the [D-8] states. We can altogether realize joint energy investments.”

“In fields, such as hydrocarbon exploration and production activities, we could produce projects together,” he said.

Turkey plans to focus on “sustainable development” during its coming D-8 presidency, Cavusoglu said. “Energy is especially at the top of the fields upon which we can cooperate."

Turkey will take over from Pakistan on Friday, which will mark the 20th anniversary of the international organization.

The international summit, with the theme Expanding Opportunities through Cooperation, will be attended by Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari and Azerbaijani leader Ilham Aliyev.

Pakistani Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Iran's first vice president Eshaq Jahangiri and the vice president of Indonesia Jusuf Kalla will also participate.

Global challenges

Turning to global challenges, from poverty to racism, from mass migrations to drought across the world, Cavusoglu said: “Many crises, from Syria to Yemen, from Iraq to Afghanistan, from Palestine to Myanmar, are happening near the D-8 countries.

“Against all these threats, we, as the D-8 countries, need to cooperate more effectively."

"During our D-8 presidency, we will exert efforts to make our organization more effective and productive,” Cavusoglu said, calling for support from member countries.

Pakistani Foreign Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif said his country had held the chair beyond the normal period of two years, since 2012.

The minister said Pakistan held a successful chairmanship and had worked to make the organization more visible during its presidency.

He said the theme of the summit was very proper: "It reflects the objectives of the economic organization."

The minister said the D-8 was entering a new phrase and all member states needed to be much more resolved to reach goals in major areas of cooperation -- industry, agriculture and food security, energy, trade, transportation and tourism.

"Pakistan is fully aware of the potential [of the organization], [...] and ready to extend full support and cooperation," Asif said.

The Developing-8, better known as the D-8, was founded by the then Turkish Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan in 1997 through the Istanbul Declaration of Summit of Heads of State/Government.

Formed as an economic alliance, the body consists of Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Malaysia, Nigeria, Pakistan and Turkey.

AA