SCO summit to agree on new co-op

Updated: 2009-06-15 16:10

YEKATERINBURG, Russia -- The leaders of the member states of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) will reach new consensus on measures to deepen political, security, economic and other cooperation at their summit in the Ural Mountains city of Yekaterinburg this week, experts said.

Under new circumstances, it is of great significance to strengthen cooperation in jointly tackling new challenges and threats, consolidating peace and security, safeguarding regional stability and advancing cultural and other exchanges among SCO member states, Pan Guang, director of the Center of SCO Studies at the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences, told Xinhua in a recent telephone interview.

In fighting terrorism and transnational organized crime, conventional challenges remain while new ones have appeared recently, Pan said. The leaders will discuss the issue in depth in a bid to expand common grounds, he added.

Li Xin, director of the Center for Russian and Central Asian Studies at the Shanghai Institutes for International Studies, said the main task in security cooperation is to step up efforts to fight terrorism, separatism and extremist forces and jointly combat drug trafficking and illegal immigration to safeguard regional security.

Meanwhile, the situation in Afghanistan should also be a concern for the SCO, Li added.

The SCO, a regional organization founded in 2001, comprises China, Russia and the Central Asian nations of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

At a time when the global financial crisis is continuing to spread, jointly meeting the challenges brought about by the crisis and working together for economic recovery and further growth will be another major topic to be discussed at the summit, he said.

Li said regional economic cooperation has always been a major area of cooperation among SCO member states, as well as one of the two main propellers promoting the development of the organization. Political and security cooperation is viewed as the other propeller, he added.

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"Under the current circumstances, strengthening economic and financial cooperation has become all the more important, so has innovation for developing new economic cooperation models," Li said.

The SCO will put forward its countermeasures, proposals and demands on jointly tackling the financial crisis and reforming the international economic system, Li said.

Pan suggested the SCO member states promote bilateral and multilateral economic and financial cooperation to achieve a win-win result.

It is desirable to advance major economic and financial joint projects at an appropriate time and develop emergency measures to address the financial crisis, Pan said.

The SCO member states should also work together to tap the potential in energy cooperation, promote multilateral cooperation and facilitate bilateral and multilateral trade, he added.

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