Discussion of key issues of trade, economic and investment cooperation within the SCO

On October 28 this year, there was the 19th Meeting of the Ministers of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) member states responsible for foreign economic and trade activities via video-conferencing chaired by the Republic of India.

Minister of Trade and Industry of the Republic of India Piyush Goyal, First Vice Minister of National Economy of the Republic of Kazakhstan A. Irgaliev, Deputy Minister of Commerce of the People's Republic of China and Deputy Representative of the People's Republic of China in international trade negotiations Yu Jianhua, Deputy Minister of Economy of the Kyrgyz Republic A. Alybaev, Deputy Minister of Commerce of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan Muhammad Humair Karim, Deputy Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation V. Ilyichev, Deputy Minister of Economic Development and Trade of the Republic of Tajikistan A. Safarali, First Deputy Minister of Investment and Foreign Trade of the Republic of Uzbekistan A. Voitov attended the meeting. The SCO Secretary General V. Norov and Executive Secretary of the SCO Business Council S. Kanavsky also attended.

The attendees of the meeting considered a wide range of issues of further development of regional economic interaction and exchanged views on the state and prospects of trade, economic and investment cooperation in the SCO space.

The heads of the delegations approved the draft Action Plan for 2021-2025 on the implementation of the Program of Multilateral Trade and Economic Cooperation of the SCO Member States and recommended the Secretariat to submit the draft Plan for approval at the upcoming meeting of the Council of Heads of Government of the SCO Member States. Besides, the attendees approved the draft Concept of Cooperation of the SCO Member States on the Development of Remote and Rural Areas in the Digital Age and recommended the Secretariat to submit a document for approval at the next meeting of the Council of Heads of the SCO Member States scheduled for November 10, 2020.

The agenda of the meeting also included the approval of statements of ministers of the SCO member states responsible for foreign economic and trade activities on measures to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and support the multilateral trading system, as well as an action plan for the Memorandum of Understanding to stimulate cooperation within the SCO in micro-, small and medium-sized enterprises between the relevant ministries of the Organization's member states.

They separately considered the practical aspects for the implementation of initiatives to create special working groups on poverty reduction and start-up development.

After the meeting, the attendees noted the significance to further strengthen cooperation between the SOC member states in such areas as commerce investment, transport, and logistics, tourism, agriculture, industry, energy, information, and communication technologies, science, ecology, and environmental protection, as well as intellectual property protection.

The following meeting is expected for 2021.

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