SCO summit to forge closer ties among member states

The SCO summit, which is taking place on June 13-14 in Bishkek, is notable for the fact that India, Pakistan leaders may meet at the summit, RISS expert Vladimir Evseev said. The leaders of these two countries will meet for the first time after the major armed conflict in Kashmir. The expert also recalled that the summit was helding against the backdrop of an escalating US-China trade war.

"Now China needs Russia's support. After the introduction of U.S. trade duties, there arises an issue what to do with Chinese goods. Our country can offer goods transportation along the Northern Sea Route. Technological cooperation between Moscow and Beijing is also developing," V.Evseev explained.

He underscored that the fight against terrorism was also important for China. Beijing is concerned over the Uighur Islamist threat. China doesn't want Uighur militants that have been fighting at the side of ISIS to return to the Shinjiang Uigur Autonomous region. Beijing needs the support of the Central Asian States in this issue.

In addition to the fight against terrorism, the military and political sphere is also important for Russia. In expert's opinion, the Afghan threat is now growing again. The problem lies both in the drug trafficking that has been identified globally and the concentration of militants on the border with Central Asia. In this regard, Moscow has an interest in the coordinated policy of the SCO countries to counter this threat. The SCO member states' political support on Syria, where the Idlib de-escalation zone remains the key point of instability, is also very important for Russia. In the economic sphere, Moscow is interested in strengthening cooperation between the EAEU and China’s One Belt, One Road initiative.

For their part, Central Asian states (CA) are very interested in projects that could let them to raise the population’s standard of living. CA would also like Russia and China to pursue a coordinated policy on its territory. In addition, the USA is now provoking a confrontation between Moscow and Beijing, saying that China has allegedly deployed military bases in Central Asia.

"I believe that we should do everything to strengthen Russian-Chinese relations. The SCO will help us to further deepen our cooperation not only on a bilateral basis, but also in a broader format," RISS expert concluded.

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