Home About GTI Documents

Ulaanbaatar Declaration (2013)

14th Meeting of the GTI Consultative Commission 
30 October 2013, Ulaanbaatar 
The 14th Meeting of the GTI Consultative Commission was concluded on 30 October 2013 in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia with the participation of high-level delegations from the GTI Member-Countries: the People’s Republic of China, Mongolia, the Republic of Korea and the Russian Federation, and the representatives of international organisations, financing institutions and Northeast Asian local governments. 
On the occasion of the 14th Meeting of the GTI Consultative Commission (CC), we representatives of the GTI Member Governments, envisaged the prospects of regional economic cooperation and development in Northeast Asia (NEA) and deliberated on strategies to further promote GTI cooperation. 
We noted the remarkable progress made by the GTI since the 13th CC Meeting with satisfaction and acknowledged the strong support provided by GTI’s partners. 
1. Strategic Review
We reaffirm the significance of GTI as a member-country driven platform with the vision to build a great partnership for common prosperity between neighbours in NEA. 
Having reached broad understanding on the strategic directions of GTI’s future development to an independent entity, we express our determination to advance GTI’s cooperation. We review the Concept Note on the New Modality of GTI drafted by the Secretariat and urge the National Coordinators (NC) and the Secretariat to accelerate the discussions on strategic elements of the new modality, aiming at finalising the concept paper before the Second NC Meeting in 2014. We welcome the Roadmap with indicative timelines to guide the transition process, with an aim to completing the process by 2016.
We expect that the GTI will transit to a strategically focused, pragmatic and development-oriented organisation to enhance mutual benefits, and accelerate economic growth as well as sustainability in the priority areas of: transport, trade and investment, tourism, energy, environment, and others, if deemed necessary. 
We encourage the engagement of all NEA countries in GTI for enhanced regional economic integration, and stress the need to strengthen the cooperation with Japan and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea on project activities, reaffirming our invitation for the GTI membership to both countries. 
2. Cooperation in the Priority Sectors 
We endorse the substantial outcomes resulting from the implementation of the GTI projects and agree to further our cooperative efforts in the priority sectors in order to continually deliver concrete results. 
We welcome the progress in transport cooperation, in particular the successful conclusion of the 3rd Meeting of the GTI Transport Board (1 August 2013 in Vladivostok) with the endorsement of the GTI Regional Transport Strategy and Action Plan, which serves as guidance for the GTI Member Countries to further develop the Trans-Greater Tumen Region (GTR) transport corridors and to enhance coordination on transport planning.
We welcome the successful completion of the GTI Transport Corridors Study Project, which was a major impulse to advance the development of regional transport corridors linking major sea-land routes, railways, roads and ports. We acknowledge the reopening of the Hunchun – Makhalino railway in August 2013 and the Khasan-Rajin railway in September 2013, which will significantly contribute to boosting regional trade by providing the shortest and most efficient transport links between neighbouring countries. We welcome the progress on the ongoing Evaluation Study of the Sea-land Routes in NEA and endorse the three new projects: Trans-GTR Transport Corridors: Financing Infrastructure Development, Study on Software Support to the Operationalisation of Transport Corridors in the Greater Tumen Region, Rajin (DPRK) – Khasan (Russia) Railway and Port Study Project, in close consultation with participating parties on a consensus basis, as well as the International Seminar on Transport Cooperation in NEA. 
Trade and Investment
We continue our commitment to support trade and investment facilitation efforts in the Greater Tumen Region (GTR). In this regard, we emphasise the importance of knowledge sharing on trade facilitation and recognise the positive outcomes of the 3rd Meeting of the GTI Trade Facilitation Committee and the 3rd International Seminar on Trade Facilitation (6 August 2013 in Ulaanbaatar). 
We welcome the outstanding success of the 1st GTI Trade and Investment Expo, held in June 2013 in Gangwon Province, with multi-million dollar worth of trade deals being made. After being approved as an annual event, we agree to make concerted efforts to encourage the participation of more businesses in the Expo, and look forward to the 2nd Expo to be held in Gangwon Province in October 2014. We acknowledge the successful organisation of the annual International Capacity Building Programme on Trade Facilitation for NEA, including the Capacity Building Workshop on Trade and Investment Facilitation in NEA held in December 2012 in Beijing, and welcome the progress on the implementation of the Trade Facilitation Study project. 
In addition, we agree to revitalise the GTI Business Advisory Council and strengthen the NEA Economic Cooperation Forum through the enhanced engagement of the Chambers of Commerce and Industries in order to promote the exchanges among businesses in the region and to hold regular dialogues on economic cooperation.
We recognise the importance of tourism cooperation for regional economic growth. We welcome the successful conclusion of the 6th Tourism Board Meeting (10 June 2013 in Pyeongchang) and the 2nd NEA Tourism Forum (8 September 2013 in Hunchun), which aims to promote NEA as a world class tourism destination region. 
We greet the progress in the development of the Multi-Destination Tourism (MDT) products in the GTR deriving from the successful completion of the MDT Project and welcome the launch of the MDT Promotion Centre in Jilin Province as well as the MDT Database hosted by the Centre to promote regional tourism cooperation and knowledge sharing, with the strong support of tourism organisations and local governments. 
Energy and Environment 
We stress the need to further strengthen practical cooperation activities in the Energy and Environment sectors and welcome the successful conclusion of the 2nd Energy Board Meeting (28 May 2013 in Vladivostok) with the approval of the GTI Energy Action Plan 2013-2014 and the progress in preparing the Terms of Reference of the GTI Energy Capacity Building Project. We expect more active engagement of relevant energy administrations from GTI member countries in the cooperation. 
Other areas of cooperation 
To create a favourable business environment in the region, we emphasise the need to coordinate on national policies in order to simplify the border-crossing procedures including the visa arrangement for more efficient and free movement of people and goods around the GTR. We agree to make joint efforts to identify existing policy impediments and find possible solutions. 
We also discuss the possibility of institutionalising agricultural cooperation within the GTI framework to address potential cooperation needs in agricultural sector, and will continue to explore ways for promoting agricultural cooperation.
3. Partnership Development  
We acknowledge the significant progress of partnership expansion and reaffirm the importance of close cooperation and coordination with international organisations, local governments and the private sector for the successful implementation of GTI activities.
We express gratitude on UNDP’s long-standing support and appreciate the technical assistance provided by other partners including the German International Cooperation (GIZ), the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) and the Asian Development Bank (ADB). We decide to continue enhancing cooperation with partners to promote synergy for regional development. We welcome the conclusion of the GTI-ESCAP cooperation Memorandum of Understanding in June 2013 to strengthen the cooperation between the two Parties. We welcome the participation of the Eurasian Economic Commission (EEC) in the 14th Meeting of the GTI Consultative Commission.
We appreciate the proactive role of NEA local governments in boosting regional cooperation. We welcome the significant progress on the GTI NEA Local Cooperation Committee (LCC) and the success of the Inaugural LCC Meeting (30 August in Changchun) with the presence of Governor/Vice Governor level officials from the key NEA local governments and private sector representatives to discuss local cooperation priorities and build common understanding on future LCC activities. We note the plan of the LCC to organise its 2nd Meeting in 2014 in Tottori Prefecture.
We welcome the progress of the NEA EXIM Banks Association with the four member banks from the GTI countries. Recognsing the Association's essential role in fostering the implementation of regional projects in the GTI priority sectors, we reaffirm our strong support to the Association. We welcome the Association’s plan to set up a close consultation channel and to hold the inaugural meeting next year to expedite the development process in the region. To facilitate and expedite the Association's operation, we urge the NC, together with the sectoral Boards and Committee to work out a list of bankable regional projects in 2014, to be examined and selected by the Association as pilot projects.
We welcome the proposal to develop a network among respective national research institutes from GTI countries that will serve as GTI's brain trust to help prioritising development projects and to support various research activities.
4. Final Provisions
The People’s Republic of China, the Republic of Korea and the Russian Federation express appreciation to Mongolia for its Chairmanship since the 13th CC Meeting and the excellent hosting of the 14th CC Meeting.
We commend the GTI Secretariat for its excellent performance and remarkable progress on implementing the decisions of the GTI member governments. 
We look forward to the 15th CC Meeting to be hosted in 2014 in China.