The 16th Meeting of SCO Member States' Ministers for Foreign Trade and Economy was held in Moscow on 15 November. The meeting, chaired by Minister of Economic Development Maxim Oreshkin, was for the first time attended by eight SCO member states.
The agenda included preparations for the second most important event on the organisation's calendar for this year, namely, the upcoming meeting of the Council of Heads of Government of the SCO member states, which will be held in Sochi from November 30 — December 1, 2017.
Secretary General of the SCO Rashid Alimov gave a welcoming address, noting the importance of further expansion of economic cooperation within the SCO space, the need to achieve the SCO's goals and objectives set out in the organisation's Development Strategy Towards 2025. "In the Astana Declaration, the leaders of the SCO member states advocated the development of broad international cooperation in order to give an impetus to global economic recovery, to ensure economic and financial stability, and to support sustainable, dynamic, balanced and inclusive growth amid advancing economic globalisation," he said.
The Secretary General also stressed that "India and Pakistan joining the SCO marked the beginning of a new phase in the organisation's institutional development and created the prerequisites for the formation of a qualitatively new platform in order to improve the dynamics of multilateral cooperation in trade, economic, banking, finance, investment and technology, based on the principles of the "Shanghai spirit".
During the meeting, the ministers summed up the implementation of a number of programmes and proposals underlying the multilateral trade and economic cooperation of the SCO member states. They reviewed ways in which India and Pakistan could participate in the organisation's practical economic activities, and also discussed other important trade and economic issues on the current SCO agenda.
The minutes and a press release on the outcome of the 16th Meeting of SCO Member States' Ministers for Foreign Trade and Economy were adopted at the end of the meeting.
A delegation of the SCO Secretariat led by Deputy Secretary General of the SCO Aziz Nosirov took part in the meeting.
The Meeting of SCO Member States' Ministers for Foreign Trade and Economy functions to promote trade, economic and investment cooperation between the organisation's member countries.