Chinese premier’s speech at SCO meeting raises prospect for cooperation, confidence

BEIJING, Nov. 3 (Xinhua) — Experts said the speech delivered by Chinese Premier Li Keqiang at the latest meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) raised the prospect for a closer, broadened cooperation among the member states.

Addressing the 18th meeting of the Council of Heads of Government of Member States of the SCO held Saturday in Tashkent, capital of Uzbekistan, Li called for joint efforts to intensify cooperation in areas of security, openness and trade, connectivity, innovation and the sharing of development achievements.

Kubanychbek Taabaldiev, director of Kyrgyzstan’s official Kabar News Agency, said Li’s substantive and constructive speech paid special attention to implementing the tasks set by SCO’s heads of state at the Bishkek Summit, highlighted important issues facing the SCO countries, and expressed the willingness to promote cooperation within the SCO framework.

Ravshan Nazarov, a senior researcher at the Institute of History of the Academy of Sciences of the Republic of Uzbekistan, said Li’s remarks covered the major areas for multilateral cooperation within the regional group, and the topics discussed at the meeting help push forward the bilateral cooperation between his country and China as well.

The SCO is a tested cooperative mechanism, he added.

Swaran Singh, an Indian professor at the School of International Studies at Jawaharlal Nehru University, said Li’s speech reflected that China will continue to take the lead in boosting regional economies and to comprehensively push forward the development of SCO’s partnership.

Zamir Ahmed Awan, deputy dean of Chinese Studies Center at the National University of Sciences and Technology of Pakistan, said the SCO has grown into a platform to address issues more than security, such as promoting economic development and deepening win-win cooperation in the region.

The free trade within the group and between its members is an important aspect of promoting free global trade liberalization, he said, adding that the SCO security cooperation could help ensure peace and stability for member states and the region.

The SCO, which was founded in 2001, comprises eight members — China, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

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