Thu, 15 Sep 2022 11:39 AM IST
THE 22nd edition of the Shanghai Cooperation summit began on Thursday in Samarkand, Uzbekistan. This would be the first in-person summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation Member States(SCO-CoHS) after the 2019 that took place in Bishkek. The summit was held virtually after 2019.
The meeting will be attended by the leaders of SCO Member States and Observer States; the Secretary General of the SCO; the Executive Director of the SCO Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure (RATS); the President of Turkmenistan; and other invited guests.
The leaders of the SCO member countries will hold bilateral meetings on the sidelines of the summit, as they have not met in two years due to the COVID pandemic. The leaders are expected to review the organization's activities over the last two decades and discuss the state and prospects of multilateral cooperation. The meeting is also expected to cover regional and global issues.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will attend the summit for two days, Thursday and Friday. On the sidelines of the SCO summit in Samarkand, he is expected to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin and Uzbekistan President Shavkat Mirziyoyev. Along with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Chinese President Xi Jinping and Pakistan Minister Shehbaz Sharif will be attending one of the most important summits on Thursday.
Besides the bilateral meetings, PM Modi and the Russian President will discuss Indian-Russian cooperation within the UN and G20 during the SCO summit.
India and SCO Summit 2022:
India, from its time of association with SCO, has made sincere efforts to encourage peace, prosperity, and stability in the whole Eurasian region and in SCO member countries in particular.
The SCO gives India the opportunity to launch multilateral and regional counter-terrorism and drug-trafficking initiatives, which are now being used by its neighbours to inflict social wounds and target India's youth.
Economic cooperation is also an important issue which will be discussed in the SCO meetings.
Indian Ambassador Manish Prabhat told news agency ANI that, "When we are meeting with central Asian countries, we discuss connectivity, which will promote trade, investment and other exchanges between Indian and central Asian countries."
SCO also has enough potential in various sectors wherein all member states could find converging interests. India is an emerging startup destination and the SCO can become a major platform for India to lure innovations in science and technology from member-states to pull up a business idea in the country.
The Shanghai Five, formed in 1996, became the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in 2001 with the addition of Uzbekistan. With the inclusion of India and Pakistan in 2017 and the decision to admit Tehran as a full member in 2021, the SCO has grown to become one of the world's largest multilateral organisations, accounting for nearly 30% of global GDP and 40% of the global population.
Uzbekistan is the current chair of SCO 2022. India will be the next chair of the SCO.