The Sixth Prime Ministers' Meeting of Shanghai Cooperation Organization Opens in Tashkent Wen Jiabao Attends the Meeting and Delivers a Speech
On November 2, 2007, the sixth Prime Ministers' Meeting of Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) was held in Tashkent, capital of Uzbekistan.
Kazakh Prime Minister Karim Masimov, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao, Kyrgyz Acting Prime Minister Almaz Atambayev, Russian Prime Minister Viktor Zubkov, Tajik Prime Minister Akil Akilov and Ukzbek Prime Minister Shavkat Mirziyaev, and Iranian First Vice-President Parviz Davoudi, Mongolian Deputy Prime Minister Mendsaikhan Enkhsaikhan, Indian Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Ahmed and Pakistani Foreign Minister Khurshid Kasuri attended the meeting. Ahmad Zia Massoud, First Vice President of Afghanistan will be present at the meeting as the guest of the host country. Mirziyaev hosted the meeting.
The seventh Summit of SCO presidents which was held in Bishkek, capital of Kyrgyzstan in August this year drafted new plans on the future development of the organization and the strengthening of cooperation among member states. The heads of state of member countries signed the Treaty on Long-Term Good-Neighborliness, Friendship and Cooperation, marking a new development stage of the organization. The tasks of the sixth Prime Ministers' Meeting are to implement comprehensively the consensus reached at the Bishkek Summit and the treaty and advance the pragmatic cooperation of member states in various fields.
Addressing the meeting, Premier Wen pointed out that the international and regional situations are complicated and peace and tranquility in the region are faced with such non-traditional security threats as the "three forces" and drug smuggling. To develop the economy and improve people's welfare are the urgent need of the region and an effective way to build lasting peace in the region. It serves the fundamental interest of all countries and their people to deepen regional economic cooperation.
To enhance the pragmatic cooperation of the organization to a higher level, Wen put forward the following suggestions. First, to strengthen the coordination of laws, regulations and policies, continue to improve the trade and investment environment and facilitate the participation of businesses of member states in the cooperation on customs clearance, quality inspection, transport and investment; second, to improve the cooperation mechanism and open new cooperation areas including agriculture, science and technology in a prioritized and step-by-step way. China is willing to hold the first meeting of senior agricultural officials by the end of this year; third, to implement network projects in priority areas, ensure the early launch of demonstration projects, speed up the construction projects of road, telecom and power networks among member states and accelerate the selection of demonstration projects in such fields as energy, transport and telecom; fourth, to strengthen the research and planning on economic policies among member countries and increase information exchanges. Member countries can conduct cooperation within themselves in line with their development strategies and provide support for business cooperation.
The SCO should intensify efforts to stimulate the exchanges and cooperation of its members in the areas of education, culture, health and youth organizations.
The SCO members have reached many agreements and consensus over the years which must be fulfilled faithfully, said Wen.
All parties emphasized that it is the common aspiration and objective of all members and the key to the continuous growth of the organization to deepen and expand pragmatic cooperation, realize common development and build a harmonious region. In a pragmatic and constructive atmosphere the member countries should exchange in-depth opinions on strengthening cooperation in trade, investment, transport, energy, telecom, customs, culture and education and reach consensuses on improving trade and investment environment, implementing network projects and expanding financing channels.
Secretary-general Bolat Nurgaliyev of the SCO and Director Subanov of the Regional Anti-Terrorism Structure Executive Committee also attended the meeting as nonvoting delegates.
Following the meeting the heads of delegations of member states signed the joint communiqué and met journalists. The Agreement on Cooperation and Mutual Assistance in Customs Matters of SCO member states was also signed at the meeting.
The next SCO Prime Ministers' Meeting will be held in Kazakhstan in 2008.