Government leaders of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization will lay out “important plans” to tackle regional challenges including terrorism and the economic downturn, a senior diplomat said on Dec 8.
Vice-Foreign Minister Cheng Guoping made the remarks at a news conference about the 14th SCO prime ministers’ meeting, to be held in Zhengzhou, capital of Henan province, on Dec 14 and 15.
“Affected by the international and regional situation, countries in this region are facing challenges including growing pressure on the economy and rising terrorism risks,” he said.
Cheng said the SCO meeting will lay out a series of plans on the “top priority fields and the most urgent tasks” in regional cooperation, including merging China’s Belt and Road Initiative with the development strategies of countries in the region.
The meeting will discuss trade, investment, financing, transportation and cultural cooperation, he said.
Asked about anti-terrorism cooperation, Cheng said China had already joined in anti-terrorism cooperation with the US and Russia.
“At present, relevant countries have proactively coordinated and consulted on their anti-Islamic State actions in Syria and they have had definite progress in fighting terrorism,” Cheng added.
Government leaders from the six member states of the SCO, including prime ministers of China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and the first deputy prime minister of Uzbekistan, will attend the Zhengzhou meeting.
Aside from the six member states, government leaders from Afghanistan, Belarus, India, Iran, Mongolia and Pakistan will take part in the meeting as observers.
President Xi Jinping will meet government leaders of SCO member states on the sidelines of the meeting.
Premier Li Keqiang will meet his Russian counterpart Dmitry Medvedev for the 20th China-Russia Prime Ministers’ Regular Meeting. China and Russia will sign cooperation documents on energy, aviation and space during the visit, Cheng said.
Sun Zhuangzhi, secretary-general of the SCO research center at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said the economies of China and other SCO countries are highly complementary.
“With a good basis of transportation linking the region, they have great potential in joining the national development plans,” he said.