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Rashid Alimov: Economic cooperation is a key priority for SCO at the new development stage. The SCO Secretary-General delivers an address at the ESCAP
27.11.2017 14:46

A high-level panel meeting ofthe Second Ministerial Conference onRegional Economic Cooperation and Integration inAsia and the Pacific, co-hosted bythe UN Economic and Social Commission forAsia and the Pacific (ESCAP) and the Asian Development Bank (ADB), began inBangkok, Thailand, on23 November 2017. A delegation ofthe SCO Secretariat led bySCO Secretary-General Rashid Alimov is taking part inthe conference.

Opening remarks have been delivered byESCAP Executive Secretary Shamshad Akhtar, ADB Vice-President Bambang Susantono and Vice Minister forCommerce ofThailand Winichai Chaemchaeng.

SCO Secretary-General Rashid Alimov delivered his remarks onthe first day ofthe ministerial panel. He updated the participants onthe SCO member states' economic cooperation, which is considered a priority ofthe organisation's joint work.

Mr Alimov said that the ongoing turbulence inthe global economy is a serious challenge. "It is only throughbroad international cooperation that we can launch economic revival and ensure economic and financial stability, aswell assustainable, dynamic, balanced and inclusive growth inconditions ofthe ongoing economic globalisation," the SCO Secretary-General said.

He pointed outthat the economic connection betweenthe SCO member states is based ontheir geographical proximity, aswell ason the agreements, arrangements plus joint development programmes that are effective withinthe SCO. "The SCO member states are now focused onprojects forthe development ofinfrastructure, transport and communications. They are also looking fornew forms and ways ofregional economic cooperation. This is facilitating the gradual growth ofthe SCO member states' mutual accumulated investment, which exceeded $40 billion in2016," Rashid Alimov said. He also noted that economic cooperation withinthe SCO is based ona network ofmultilateral mechanisms ofthe concerned ministries and agencies incustoms, transport, trade, investment, banking and finance, aswell asagriculture, communications and telecommunications.

The SCO Secretary-General also spoke aboutcooperation inthe field oftransport withinthe SCO and the special importance ofthe SCO member states' Intergovernmental Agreement onInternational Road Transport Facilitation, which provided conditions forimplementing a large-scale multilateral trans-regional transport project. "This document has created a coordinated foundation forthe international road deliveries, and its routes form a common regional network offreight aswell aspassenger road transportation. The fundamentally important part is that non-SCO states can join this agreement, and some ofthem have indicated their interest indoing this," Rashid Alimov said.

The Second Ministerial Conference onRegional Economic Cooperation and Integration inAsia and the Pacific is underway atthe Bangkok Headquarters ofthe UN Economic and Social Commission forAsia and the Pacific (ESCAP) between21 and 24 November 2017. The participants are discussing topics related toeconomic cooperation inthe vast ESCAP region witha focus onsupporting the implementation ofthe 2030 Agenda forSustainable Development. Other subjects onthe agenda include removing obstacles togreater market integration and enhancing regional financial cooperation.

The conference participants are expected toadopt a ministerial declaration onregional economic cooperation and integration inAsia and the Pacific.

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