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SCO economic cooperation enjoys bright future

Xinhua | Updated: 2013-09-10 15:48

MOSCOW -- Economic cooperation among members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization has huge potential and a bright future, a Russian business leader has said.

Born as a regional group to promote regional security, the SCO has grown into an organization whose members have actively conducted economic cooperation over the years, Georgy Petrov, vice president of the Russian Trade and Commerce Chamber, told Xinhua in a recent interview.

He said a memorandum on promoting regional economic cooperation, as well as trade and investment facilitation signed in the Kazakh city Almaty in 2001 could be seen as the starting point for the economic cooperation among the SCO countries.

In 2003, a program of multilateral economic cooperation under the SCO framework adopted in Beijing marked another milestone of the growing business ties among the SCO states, said Petrov.

"We are looking forward to the Bishkek summit, hoping that the meeting will encourage multilateral economic cooperation," he said, referring to the 13th meeting of the Council of Heads of the SCO Member States to be held in the Kyrgyz capital on September 13.

Though commercial interests of different members may not be 100 percent the same, similar positions can help them to defend national interests in the World Trade Organization and other international bodies, he explained.

Multilateral cooperation within the SCO in transportation has been positive, Petrov said, adding cooperation in information technology and energy is also notable within the bloc.

Energy cooperation among the SCO countries could be fruitful, since each member could contribute to the process, such as building pipelines and other infrastructure, as well as conducting joint geological researches, he said.

Forging closer business ties is another goal for the SCO members, Petrov said.

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