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Adviser on Foreign Affairs Mr. Sartaj Aziz has highlighted Pakistan’s success in counterterrorism operations, which have led to improved security situation, higher economic growth rate and better investment climate in the country. Pakistan stands ready to share its counterterrorism experience with the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). He made these comments at the 15th Heads of Government’s Council of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), held today at Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.

The decision to grants full membership to Pakistan was taken in Ufa, Russia, in July 2015. The Adviser informed the Summit that Pakistan is ahead of schedule in completing with the procedural steps required for its membership and hopes to attend the next Summit in Astana, Kazakhstan in June 2017 as a full member. The Adviser underscored the importance Pakistan attaches to its formal accession as full member of the SCO and pledged its full support to SCO’s policies and programmes.

Underlining the importance of regional connectivity for peace, stability and economic progress, Mr. Aziz stated that Pakistan offers critical overland and maritime routes for trade and energy connectivity within the SCO region and beyond. He underlined the potential of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), implementation of which is now in full swing, to serve as a vital regional link that would bring the SCO a step closer to achieving its vision of peace, security and economic integration in the region and beyond.

The 15th Heads of Government’s Council of the SCO was attended, among others, by Prime Minister Li Keqiang of China and Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev of Russia. The Joint Communique issued at the meeting underscored the importance of connectivity within the SCO region. In this regard, SCO states agreed on early implementation of SCO’s road transport agreements and conclusion of its Road Transport Programme. In order to deepen cooperation in macroeconomics and finance, they agreed to make full use of the potential of inter-banks cooperation, creation of the SCO Development Fund and the SCO Development Bank.

On the sidelines of the Summit, Adviser Sartaj Aziz held bilateral meetings with Foreign Minister Wang Yi of China, Foreign Minister Abdyldaev Erlan Bekeshovich of Kyrgyz Republic and Deputy Foreign Minister Ebrahim Rahimpour of Iran.

3 November 2016

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