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SCO should accelerate trade, investment facilitation: expert

By Fang Yang (Xinhua)

15:11, April 19, 2013

BEIJING, April 18 (Xinhuanet) -- The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) should accelerate the trade and investment facilitation in the near future, a Chinese expert said during the 8th session of the SCO forum held here on Thursday.

The SCO member states should further economic cooperation and promote the trade and investment facilitation, Pan Guang, an expert at the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences said in an interview with Xinhuanet on the sidelines of the forum.

Economic integration may be the long-term goal for the SCO, but in the meantime, the SCO should focus more on realistic objectives, he said on the issue of the SCO economic integration.

A free trade agreement among the SCO member states might be a little too soon for the organization right now, Pan added.

"The most impressive progress of economic cooperation of the SCO is the decision to establish SCO banks and SCO Development Fund made last year," he said, noting although there will be a series of concerns about financing and other issues in the process, the project should be carried out timely.

Experts from the SCO bodies, members, observers and dialogue partners gathered at the forum to exchange views on the achievements and obstacles of economic cooperation among the SCO member states.

The two-day forum covers topics including building new type of national relations and harmonious region, economic cooperation, regional security cooperation and further development of SCO.

The SCO is a regional organization founded in 2001 by the leaders of China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan.

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