On 26 September 2019, a regular meeting of SCO ministers responsible for foreign economic activities and foreign trade was held in Tashkent. The event marked an important stage in coordinating the essence of the upcoming meeting of the SCO Heads of Government Council to be held in the capital of Uzbekistan in early November.
While working on their heavily packed agenda, the heads of the delegations discussed the current state and development prospects of multilateral trade, economic and investment cooperation within the framework of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation. They noted that the rapid growth of the SCO economies compared to the global rate was proof of the increasing economic influence of the organisation and that this is conducive to the sustainable advancement of the member states.
The strengthening of cooperation within the SCO will proceed on the basis of the new wording of the Programme of Multilateral Trade and Economic Cooperation of the SCO Member States, which was adopted at the event and will be approved at the meeting of the SCO heads of government in Tashkent. The draft of the Programme sets out priority goals in the field of trade and investment, banking and financial cooperation, transport and logistics, industry, agriculture, energy, customs, innovations, ICT, spatial development, interregional collaboration, tourism, ecology and education.
The participants supported the Russian initiative regarding the development of remote and rural regions within the SCO. Efforts are to be focused on the search for common solutions intended to enhance the services and infrastructure accessibility for the people residing in these regions, including through the application of digital technology and innovations. A draft of this concept following the discussions was approved.
The draft Regulations of the SCO Consortium of Analytical Centres, which will conduct expert examinations of the socioeconomic situation in the SCO countries and prepare recommendations for enhancing sustainable growth in the region, was also coordinated.
Those present listened to reports concerning the activities of the SCO Business Council and the Special Working Groups of the Meeting.
The heads of the delegations unanimously confirmed their intention to continue working to create favourable conditions for economic operators in the SCO member states.