SCO has great potential for expansion on economic front: Vladimir Norov

BEIJING, May 26 (APP):Secretary General, Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), Vladimir Norov has said that although the SCO had already developed into a united and well-established organization with global influence, there was still great potential for expansion, especially on the economic front.

He made these remarks while speaking at the opening ceremony of the SCO Qingdao Forum on Local Economic and Trade Cooperation opened in Jiaozhou, a county-level city under Qingdao of East China’s Shandong province, report on Sunday.

Norov noted that SCO national leaders had called for enhanced cooperation on innovation and advanced technologies, and emphasized the importance of transport development at last year’s summit.

He said the demonstration area offered a good platform for deepening cooperation, adding: “It can collaborate with other SCO industrial parks and demonstration areas to promote the development of new overseas economic and trade cooperation zones, as well as large-scale international transport and logistics corridors.”

An effective mechanism was needed to this end, and the SCO Secretariat was ready to make due contributions, he added.

Wang Kaixuan, deputy director of the Eurasian Affairs Department at the Chinese Ministry of Commerce, said on the occasion that, after 18 years of development, the SCO provided a shining example of regional economic cooperation with mutual benefits.

Wang said cooperation at the local level had become a new direction for future SCO economic and trade cooperation, and member countries were now negotiating an outline development plan in this regard.

The two-day event, which includes thematic seminars, business talks and field visits, aims to consolidate the outcomes of the SCO 2018 Summit held last June in Qingdao, and further promote economic and trade cooperation among member countries.

With the theme of “Consultation, Cooperation and Benefit for All – Creating New Prospects for SCO Local Economic and Trade Cooperation,” the forum drew more than 390 government officials, business leaders and academics from all the 18 countries within the SCO framework.

They discussed key issues including energy cooperation, development of regional financial centers and trade and investment liberalization and facilitation.