SCO News Digest: February

Reception marking the SCO Secretariat’s 20th anniversary

SCO Secretariat

On 22 February 2024, the SCO Secretariat in Beijing hosted an official reception marking the 20th anniversary of its founding as the main permanent executive body of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation. The 200 attendees included SCO Secretary-General Zhang Ming, Member of the Politburo of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China – Foreign Minister of the People’s Republic of China Wang Yi, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Kazakhstan, the country presiding in the SCO, Shakhrat Nuryshev, senior officials of Chinese state agencies, heads of diplomatic missions of the SCO member states in Beijing, representatives of regional organisations, the media as well as the leadership of the SCO Secretariat and its officials.

Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi launches key development projects

Hindustan Times

Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the end of February visited three states Kerala, Tamil Nadu, and Maharashtra. The visit includes inaugurating and laying the foundation stone for various development projects. Starting his tour to Kerala, Narendra Modi visited the Vikram Sarabhai Space Center (VSSC) in Thiruvananthapuram. There, he inaugurated three significant space infrastructure projects amounting to approximately ₹1,800 crore.

Iran’s 10-month trade with SCO states at $37.1 billion

Islamic Republic News Agency

Iran has exchanged some 64.3 million metric tons (mt) of non-oil products valued at $37.1 billion with the member states and observer members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization in the first 10 months of the current Iranian year (from March 21, 2023, to January 21, 2024), as Ruhollah Latifi, the spokesman of the International Relations and Trade Development Committee of Iran’s House of Industry, Mining, and Trade, stated. It shows a 41% growth in terms of weight and a 5.5% rise in value compared to figures reported in last year’s corresponding period.

Transport and logistics center opened in Xi’an

Official website of the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan

President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev took part in the opening ceremony of the Transport and Logistics Center in Xi’an in the format of a teleconference. Noting the importance of creating a center for the industry and for Kazakh-Chinese relations in general, the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan launched the work of the facility. This event was preceded by an agreement between the leaders of Kazakhstan and China on the construction of a logistics center in the dry port of Xi’an, which will connect the Chinese city of Shaanxi with Kazakhstan, Central Asia and further with Europe.

China sets up a Shanghai business cooperation zone to promote international exchanges


China has published a master plan for a new business cooperation zone in Shanghai to promote international business exchanges. According to the General Administration of Customs (GAC), the Shanghai Eastern Hub International Business Cooperation Zone allows foreign visitors on invitation who enter from the airport to stay within 30 days upon arrival without the verification of their visa. The construction of the new zone’s pilot area will be completed in 2025.

External trade turnover of Kyrgyzstan in 2023 amounts to $16 billion


The volume of Kyrgyzstan’s foreign and mutual trade in goods in January-December 2023 amounted to USD 16 billion and increased by 29.9% compared to January-December 2022, First Deputy Chairwoman of the National Statistics Committee Nazira Kerimalieva said at a briefing in Bishkek. According to the statement, export supplies increased by 46.8%, and import receipts by 26%.

Pakistan’s exports to South China increases by 16% in 2023

Daily Times

Pakistan’s exports to South China have witnessed a significant surge of 16% during the year 2023. This remarkable achievement comes as a result of the strengthened trade ties between the two countries and Pakistan’s ongoing efforts to diversify its export market, said Muhammad Irfan, Trade and Investment Counsellor of Pakistan’s Consulate in Guangzhou, China. According to the latest data released by the General Administration of Customs of China (GACC), the total value of exports from Pakistan to South China reached a record high of $973.21 million from January-December of 2023, compared to $836.645 million in the previous year.

The City of Youth of the World was launched at Sirius

RIA Novosti

On February 25, in Sochi, on the federal territory of Sirius, surrounded by the main sports venues of the 2014 Olympic Games, five pavilion cities were deployed: Moscow, Kazan, Yamal, Nizhny Novgorod, and Belgorod. The Youth House, exhibition halls, a gastro-space, and a park of miniature figures are also presented here. The World Youth Festival will be held from March 1 to March 7 on the federal territory of Sirius by order of Russian President Vladimir Putin. The festival has 20 thousand participants, half of whom are foreigners.

The volume of bilateral trade between Tajikistan and Russia has reached 1 billion 800 million dollars

The volume of bilateral trade between Tajikistan and Russia increased by 2.5% in 2023 and reached 1 billion 800 million dollars. This was stated on February 21 in Kazan at a meeting between President of the Republic of Tajikistan, Emomali Rahmon and the President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin. It was noted that Russia retained its leadership in the total volume of Tajikistan’s foreign trade. They also discussed a number of topical issues in other areas of mutual interest, such as energy, agriculture, investment, migration, education and culture, on which the necessary agreements were reached.

Leaders of Uzbekistan and Russia discuss the practical implementation of summit agreements

President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev met with President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin on February 21 as part of his working visit to Kazan. They discussed topical issues on the bilateral agenda, including the practical implementation of the agreements reached at the highest level in Moscow on October 5–7 last year. Positive dynamics in trade turnover are maintained. Projects in industry, energy, transport, chemistry, pharmaceuticals, and other sectors are in the active phase of implementation.