SCO Prime Ministers Meet in China, Focus on Boosting Economic Ties in Times of Crisis

The 14th meeting of the Council of heads of government of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) member states took place Dec. 14 in Zhengzhou (Henan province), China, reported the organisation’s website.

Kazakh Prime Minister Karim Massimov, Chinese Premier of the State Council Li Keqiang, Kyrgyz Prime Minister Temir Sariev, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, Tajik Prime Minister Kokhir Rasulzoda and Uzbek First Deputy Prime Minister Rustam Azimov attended the meeting.

During the session, the delegation heads exchanged views in a constructive and businesslike atmosphere on a wide range of international and regional economic growth issues and discussed prospects and measures for improving economic and humanitarian cooperation to further strengthen the mutual understanding and traditional friendship between the peoples of the member states. The event concluded with the signing of a joint communiqué and a number of decisions on approval of various financial and economic documents.

Massimov stressed the necessity during times of continuing global economic crisis to boost multilateral cooperation in order to ensure sustainable socio-economic growth of the member states, according to the Kazakh prime minister’s website.

“It is important to implement joint projects in industrial production, provide conditions for a stable inflow of foreign investment and develop mutual trade,” he said.

The prime minister noted food security as another direction for cooperation, both in SCO territory and the entire world. He added the importance of collaboration in the areas of healthcare, education, innovations, tourism, sports and transportation, as well as the cultural and humanitarian spheres.

The participants addressed stronger cooperation on environment protection, exchanging experience on building an energy-efficient economy, promoting transition to low carbon footprint development and reducing or limiting emissions in the atmosphere, including greenhouse gases, as well as reducing the proportion of energy consumption.

In this connection, Massimov invited leading companies from SCO member states to participate in the upcoming EXPO 2017, the international exhibition highlighting future energy to be held in Astana.

The government heads noted the joint work of the SCO member states in close cooperation with the organisation’s observers and dialogue partners, based on the principles of transparency, mutual respect, equality and openness for all interested parties, will facilitate gradual stable economic growth in the interest of keeping and supporting peace and stability in the region. Implementing the Silk Road Economic Belt initiative was cited as an example.

The prime ministers also discussed the development and expansion of equal and mutually-beneficial cooperation in the tourism field, noting existing cultural, historical and economic ties, as well as creating beneficial conditions for peoples’ communication and strengthened exchanges. They stressed the importance of the first world conference on tourism development to be held in China in May 2016.

The participants of the meeting also included SCO Secretary-General Dmitry Mezentsev, Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure Executive Director Zhang Xinfeng, SCO Business Council President Sergey Katyrin and Interbank Consortium Council Authorised Representative Vladimir Dmitriev.

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