Commerce and Industries Minister Piyush Goyal chaired 19th meeting of Foreign Trade & Economic Ministers of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, SCO on Wednesday.
In his remarks, Goyal said that SCO countries need to leverage their economic strength and explore partnerships that enhance trade and investment in the region. He urged to enhance intra-SCO trade and investment in ensuring the speed of recovery from the aftermath of COVID-19 pandemic as SCO countries collectively account for more than 1/7th of global goods trade and nearly 1/8th of world trade in commercial services.
Minister of State for Commerce Hardeep Singh Puri also joined the meeting. In his remarks, Puri said, India has ushered in bold & transformational reforms in agriculture, MSME, mining, defence, space tech, logistics etc. India’s economic strategy is based on the policy of self-reliance served through the vision of AtmaNirbhar Bharat.
In the meeting four documents were adopted which were related to India’s initiatives on Multilateral Trading System, Response to Covid, Intellectual Property Rights and MSMEs. Statement on the response to Covid-19 reinforced the need for greater cooperation for access to medicines and facilitation of trade. Statement on the Multilateral Trading System of Ministers of SCO Countries who are WTO Members, highlighted the importance of the rule-based multilateral negotiations.
Besides, statement on SCO Cooperation on Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) was also adopted which relates to cooperation of intellectual property and include sharing information and experience on legislation and enforcement, cooperation in international organisations and other areas.
In another SCO meeting on Wednesday, Secretary, Ministry of Road transport and Highways represented India at SCO Transport Ministers meeting. Connectivity with SCO countries is a priority for India. India’s sincere involvement with international community in connectivity is evident in International North South Transport Corridor, Chabahar Port, Ashgabat Agreement, India Myanmar Thailand Highway and Bangladesh, Bhutan, India Nepal Initiative.
The First-ever SCO Startup Forum was also launched on Tuesday. Startups from all the SCO countries participated with great enthusiasm in the forum which is a flagship initiative under India’s chairmanship.