In recent years, the SCO managed to significantly boost its status on the international arena. "Last year, India and Pakistan started to actively work within the framework of the SCO Business Council," SCO Business Council Executive Director Sergei Kanavsky said, speaking about the 2018 results. "Cooperation of the SCO with other international organizations was successful. Much attention was paid to the development of relationships with the UN, ASEAN and others organizations," he said.
The expert said that economics is becoming increasingly important in solving problems that the SCO faces. Much attention is paid to such issues at meetings of the SCO Council of Heads of State and the SCO Council of Heads of Government. There appeared more specific and accurate economic tasks that allow the organization's members to actively interact with each other. Contacts with observers and dialogue partners, such as Turkey, Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Sri Lanka, have become more active. Exhibitions were held as part of the SCO Business Council in China, Russia and Kazakhstan. They were attended not only by representatives of the member states but also observer and dialogue partner countries.
"The 4th Forum of Small Businesses of the SCO and BRICS member states in Ufa was very successful. It was attended not only by the member states and observers and dialogue partners, but also countries that aren't members of the organization. One managed to begin the practical implementation of a project to create trade platforms in Russia, China, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan. Uzbekistan and Turkey show great interest in it," Kanavsky said.
He said that the SCO member states are developing humanitarian cooperation and cooperation in the sports sphere. A marathon held in China, bicycle marathon, football tournament, art exhibitions, and events in the theatrical, musical and cinema spheres, have become a tradition.
"Cooperation in the educational sphere has been developing successfully. Agreements between agencies in Russia, China and Kyrgyzstan have been concluded. A regional educational center whose goal is to train specialists for the implementation of SCO economic projects is being created. Noteworthy, in 2018, cooperation in the hi-tech sphere broke the stalemate with the support of the Russian national part of the SCO Business Council. Agreements between hi-tech companies from Russia and China have been concluded. The project envisages that not only Russian and Chinese companies but also companies from other SCO member states can equally participate in the project," the expert said.
Kanavsky believes that it is necessary to create a special network of information platforms of the SCO Business Council Secretariat for businessmen from observer and dialogue partners countries, as well as countries that are not a part of the organization, so that to actively engage them in the activity, to provide information on the activity of the SCO Business Council and projects under implementation, as well as to invite companies from Southeastern Asia, the Middle East, Africa and Latin America.
"Concern of the business community about the need to obtain information that corresponds with reality as much as possible was one of the peculiarities of 2018. The proliferation of fake news seriously hinders the development of cooperation within the SCO framework," Kanavsky said.