What is the Cultural Coordination Center of Asia Cooperation Dialogue and How Did It Come to Be Established?
Table of Contents
The process of globalization, which previously only made sense in strategic economic alliances, has found its way to other areas, including cultural areas, these days. Regardless of the positive or negative aspects of globalization in the cultural and social areas, it should be noted that, whether we like it or not, the process of globalization tends to quickly transcend geographical boundaries as well as that of local cultures. Keeping this reality in mind, perhaps the most important strategy for preserving cultural values is to rebuild regional cooperation and revitalize regionalism.
The earlier experiences with regard to the convergence among countries show that convergence in the realms of soft politics can be a good point of departure for cultural coordination among the ancient continent of Asia, which in turn can encompass economic or cultural areas. Therefore, as the largest Asian forum formed to have a real impact on regional and international developments, the Asian Cooperation Dialogue (ACD), entered the field of global competition, and it is hoped that through the constructive role of member states, it can have a real and influential role in regional and global developments.
Keeping the above-mentioned fact in mind the Islamic Republic of Iran decided to join the ACD and it was following the third Meeting of ACD Foreign Ministers, which was held in China, that Iran’s membership was approved on 20 June 2004. Given the importance and the role of culture in the area of friendship among nations and with the view to creating solidarity among Asian nations, the Islamic Republic of Iran proposed the initiation of cultural cooperation to the ACD that happened to be the twentieth project of the ACD.
Subsequently, a concept paper was prepared and approved by the Third Senior Officials Meeting. At the same meeting, Iran was elected as the prime mover of the project, and India and Bahrain were selected as the co-prime movers.
In the Ninth Ministerial Meeting of ACD which took place in Tehran, Iran, on 7 – 8 November 2010 the Islamic Rep. of IRAN presented a proposal about facilitating cultural cooperation between the Member States, which was duly approved by the Member States and Iran was made in charge of the executing the approved programs.
The First Meeting
The first meeting of the ACD officials on cultural cooperation was held in Tehran, Iran on 9-10 May 2011. The purpose of the meeting was planning, policy-making, and promotion of cultural cooperation among member states. Based on the agenda, the participating representatives of the member states discussed the modus operandi of cultural cooperation in three working committees on a) cinema, theatre, radio & TV b) Research & Publication c) Anthropology & Cultural Interaction.
In the course of the meeting, the Islamic Republic of Iran was elected as a Rapporteur and it put forward sixteen proposals in the field of cultural cooperation which were approved by delegates. However, the final approval of the projects was postponed until the next ACD Officials Meeting on cultural cooperation to be held in New Delhi, India.
The CCCACD’s Objectives Include:
Creating a website for CCCACD (under the management of the Islamic Republic of Iran)
Publication of a Quarterly Journal on the Culture of Asia
Commemorating the services of Prominent Cultural Personalities of Asia
Promoting Asian Cultural and Art Weeks
Facilitating the exchange of Films and TV series
Establishing ACD’s Cultural Corner in the Member States
Promoting media cooperation and facilitating exchange in the area of media
Establishing ACD’s Center for Cultural Studies
Establishing ACD’s Cultural Archives in Iran
Establishing ACD’s Joint News Agency
Academic cooperation in the fields of Culture and Anthropology
Establishing a Cinematic Research Center
Publishing ACD’s Great Asian Encyclopedia
Highlighting the Outstanding Role of Women in Asian culture
Cultural Revitalization of the Silk Road
Establishing Cultural Seats in the universities of the member states
The 2nd Meeting
The Second Meeting of the ACD Cultural Senior Officials was held on 19-20 April 2012, in New Delhi. At this meeting, the proposals of the Islamic Republic of Iran on the areas of cultural coordination were presented in written form and were approved after a detailed discussion. However, in the final report, the Member States, once again, called for operation plans, as well as detailed projects and plans by the Islamic Republic of Iran. Finally, it was agreed the next meeting would be held in Tehran.
The 3rd Meeting
The Third ACD Senior Officials Meeting on Cultural Cooperation was held in Tehran, on 7-8 May 2013 at the level of Ministers of Culture. The two-day meeting concluded with a twenty articles statement, emphasizing the unique role of the Asian Cooperation Dialogue as the only Asia-wide forum for exchanging views and promoting cooperation in areas of mutual interests.
In accordance with Article No.7 of this Agreement, the Member States approved the establishment of the ACD’s Cultural Coordination Center in Tehran, in order to ensure the implementation of cultural initiatives, as well as projects initiated by the ACD Member States and the enhancement of cultural ties among the Member States.
Following the presidential elections in Iran in 2013 and the formation of the new government, his Excellency Dr. Ali Jannati, the Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance, appointed Mr. Issa Rezazadeh as the chairman of the Cultural Coordination Center of the ACD in August 2014.
To facilitate cooperation in different fields of culture among the state members if the ACD in collaboration with government and non-government organizations involved in cultural activities.
To provide effective coordination among relevant regional/international organizations for research on issues related to culture that are of interest to the ACD Member States, organizing such events as film festivals and cultural exhibitions, introducing the cultural features of the member states, introducing tourist attractions of the member states, etc.