On 2 March 2017, SCO Secretary-General Rashid Alimov met with Andrei Kirillov, President of the SCO Press Club and head of the TASS bureau in China, at the SCO Secretariat in Beijing.
The parties discussed cooperation between the SCO Secretariat and the TASS news agency in the framework of a bilateral cooperation agreement signed in March 2016. Andrei Kirillov pointed out that "the expectations at the signing of framework documents on cooperation with Xinhua and TASS last March have come true."
He said: "In 2016, TASS published 947 items that mentioned the SCO and 12 interviews with the SCO Secretary-General. A photo exhibition entitled A Chronicle of 15 Years of the SCO History was prepared in cooperation with TASS and has been displayed at many SCO events, including on the sidelines of high-level meetings at the UN Headquarters in New York and regional branches."
Mr Alimov and Mr Kirillov focused on information support for the SCO activities in 2017, in particular a series of high-level events ahead of the SCO summit that will be held in Astana in June.
The parties have agreed to hold the first meeting of the SCO Press Club this year at the SCO Secretariat in Beijing in the last week of March. The meeting will be attended by journalists from a wide range of SCO countries' information agencies and media outlets accredited in China.
SCO Secretary-General Rashid Alimov thanked Andrei Kirillov for productive cooperation between TASS and the SCO. Mr Kirillov expressed his appreciation for the efforts of the SCO Secretariat, the organisation's main permanent executive body, to promote the SCO's goals and objectives on the global information stage and reaffirmed readiness to strengthen cooperation with it.
The Treaty on Information Cooperation Between TASS and the SCO Secretariat was signed by TASS Director General Sergei Mikhailov and SCO Secretary-General Rashid Alimov at the SCO Secretariat in Beijing, China on 11 March 2016. Under the treaty, TASS and the SCO are to further develop and strengthen mutually beneficial cooperation on the information stage by providing quality information support to the SCO activities and all-round assistance to media cooperation and exchanges within the SCO framework.
The SCO Press Club was established on 24 May 2013 at the SCO Secretariat in Beijing, China. It is comprised of over 20 international information agencies of the SCO family accredited in China. Andrei Kirillov, head of the TASS bureau in China, is President of the SCO Press Club.