On 18 March 2021, SCO Secretary-General Vladimir Norov had a meeting at the SCO Secretariat with Mr Shi Gaoling, Deputy Secretary of the CPC Working Committee and Deputy Executive Secretary of the Board of the Yangling Agricultural Hi-Tech Industrial Demonstration Zone in northwest China's Shaanxi Province.
Vladimir Norov spoke highly of the Yangling zone's efforts to launch training courses for SCO experts. He also pointed out the importance of a regular exchange of information between the Yangling zone and the SCO countries to study their requirements and needs.
The SCO Secretary-General believes that interaction between the Yangling zone and the SCO countries could prioritise smart agriculture and quality agricultural products; technology for rational water use in agriculture; effective use of fertilisers to increase output; the organisation of joint agriculture research; the development of cooperation between SCO centres training agricultural professionals, including phytosanitary experts; the establishment of a network of food products quality control inspections and their compliance with international standards; the development of certification system for products and producers; as well as marketing and promotion of agricultural products.
Vladimir Norov thanked the management of the Yangling zone's board for their participation in the Nowruz celebrations held on 19 March 2021 and their assistance in preparing them.
Shi Gaoling updated the SCO Secretary-General on the SCO agricultural technology exchange and training demonstration base. He added that its construction was one of the strategic goals of the Shaanxi Province's five-year economic development plan. The majority of the buildings are to be completed in September 2021.
The parties emphasised their successful interaction during roundtable discussions and webinars on the development of modern agriculture technologies, trade in agricultural products and cross-border e-commerce. They expressed mutual satisfaction with the outcome of the webinars on the development of agricultural clusters, notably the webinar titled SCO Food Security: Smart Agriculture Development, held in Yangling on 10 March under a joint action plan of the SCO Secretariat and the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) for 2001-2023.
The parties agreed to hold a presentation of the SCO agricultural technology exchange and training demonstration base for a large group of representatives and relevant experts of the diplomatic missions of the SCO member states, observer countries and dialogue partners accredited in Beijing.
The Yangling Agricultural Hi-Tech Industrial Demonstration Zone was established at the initiative of President of China Xi Jinping in June 2019 in Bishkek to stimulate the development of agriculture in arid and semi-arid regions.
The goal of the Yangling Demonstration Zone is to mobilise technology, innovations and best practices to ensure food security in the SCO space.
On 22 October 2019, Shaanxi hosted a roundtable discussion, Improving Cooperation in Modern Day Agriculture for the Sake of Developing the Shanghai Spirit. The delegations were represented by the heads of agricultural ministries and agencies of China, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Afghanistan, Iran, Belarus, Mongolia, Azerbaijan, Cambodia and Sri Lanka.
A roundtable discussion on SCO Member States Cooperation — Agricultural Produce Trade and Transborder E-Trade, held on 22 October 2020, involved SCO member states, observers and dialogue partners.
A webinar on cooperation in establishing agricultural clusters in the SCO countries was held on 23 October 2020.