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Modi Sees SCO as Driver of Growth

Modi Sees SCO as Driver of Growth Modi Sees SCO as Driver of Growth

As the final process for India’s accession as a full member of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization began, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the partnership would help protect the region from threats of radicalization, violence and terror and drive its economic growth.

In his address at the SCO summit in Tashkent on Friday, Modi said India would significantly benefit from the grouping’s strengths in energy and natural resources and in turn India’s strong economy and vast market could drive economic growth in the SCO region, PTI reported.

“India’s membership of SCO would contribute to region’s prosperity. It would also strengthen its security. Our partnership will protect our societies from the threats of radical ideologies of hate, violence and terror.

“India will unite with SCO countries to work towards this goal. And, we will adopt zero tolerance and a comprehensive approach in fighting terrorism at all levels,” said Modi.

At the summit, India signed the SCO’s Memorandum of Obligations, kick-starting the process of its accession into the group as a full member.

India will have to sign around 30 other documents in the course of the year to complete the process for membership.

Pakistan is also being inducted into SCO as a full member.

The prime minister said India would be a productive partner in the SCO in promoting trade, energy cooperation and developing transport links in the region besides people-to-people contacts.

“Our decision to join the international North South Transport Corridor, the Chabahar Agreement, and the Ashgabat Agreement reflects this desire and intent,” Modi said.

 Declaration

The member states of the SCO have confirmed common ground on a number of international issues, including the situation in Syria, Ukraine and Afghanistan, according to the Tashkent Declaration of the 15th Anniversary of the SCO, which was signed by all the member states on Friday.

“They confirm the need to preserve the unity, sovereignty, territorial integrity and stability in Syria, as well as the fact that there is no alternative to political settlement of the crisis, which will allow the Syrian people to independently determine their own future,” read the declaration.

The document also reaffirmed the importance of political settlement of the crisis in Ukraine based on scrupulous implementation of the Minsk agreements.

The SCO countries reaffirmed their commitment to the maintenance of legal order at sea based on the principles of international law.

“All the relevant disputes should be resolved peacefully based on friendly negotiations and agreements between the parties concerned without their internationalization and outside interference,” the declaration read.

Founded in 2001, the SCO now has China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan as its full members, with Afghanistan, Belarus, Iran and Mongolia as observers. Turkey, Azerbaijan, Sri Lanka, Armenia, Cambodia and Nepal are dialogue partners.

Financialtribune.com