I send greetings to those gathered in Baku for the 2007 Summit of the Organization for Democracy and Economic Development – GUAM.

GUAM is in the midst of a positive and exciting transformation. Just one year ago, GUAM moved from being a regional grouping to being a full-fledged international organization. This year, GUAM’S first secretary-general, Valery Chechelashvili, has been inaugurated and its Secretariat is becoming operational. This important step will allow GUAM to achieve even more in the years ahead.

Under the U.S.-GUAM Framework Program, the United States and GUAM have expanded cooperation on trade and transport facilitation and regional law enforcement. We will continue to develop this partnership through GUAM’S new Secretariat to encourage democracy, economic development, and regional cooperation.

I extend my congratulations to the Government of Ukraine for its leadership in facilitating these achievements during its presidency. We look forward to further achievements as the Government of Azerbaijan assumes GUAM’S presidency.

With warmest wishes for the success of the 2007 GUAM Summit,

Condoleezza Rice