Desire for observer status

Belarus may receive observer status at Shanghai Co-operation Organisation

During a tele-conference with the Russia-China Regional Security and Co-operation Organisation (including the Shanghai Co-operation Organisation) Russian experts announced Belarus’ desire for observer status. The Deputy Director of the Institute for Far Eastern Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Sergei Luzyanin, notes that the forthcoming summit will see ‘two new participants emerge: India and Pakistan’. He noted, “The institute of observers will be renewed and I don’t rule out having Belarusian representatives.”

Mr. Luzyanin is confident that the Shanghai Co-operation Organisation needs not only expansion but modernisation. In particular, he believes that it’s necessary to settle the issue of the creation of the organisation’s Development Bank.

The Director General of the Caspian Co-operation Institute, Sergei Mikheev, notes that the Shanghai Co-operation Organisation remains a framework organisation. “Its potential is great but we lack concrete projects. The organisation should not be limited to the narrow framework of regional co-operation, rather aiming at becoming a global player,” he asserts.

Sun Zhuangzhi, the Secretary-General of the SCO Research Centre at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, stresses that security co-operation needs ‘revision’. “This should include the spheres of economics, the environment, security and social factors,” he noted. “We need concrete structures to deal with such issues.” He added that the forthcoming high-level meeting in Ufa (scheduled for July 8th-10th, 2015) may inspire action within the Shanghai Co-operation Organisation in the military and political spheres.

By Alexander Dorokhov

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