Source: News Bharati English24 Jun 2016 15:42:02

Tashkent, June 24: With an aim to expand India's engagement with the China in areas of security, defence and energy, PM Modi kicked off a two-day visit to attend the annual summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). "I am confident that my talks at the SCO Summit will strengthen our bilateral ties with the SCO nations," PM Modi told reporters shortly after he was received by Uzbekistan PM Shavkat Mirziyoyev in Tashkent.During his address at the SCO summit, PM Modi said that within SCO, India will be a productive partner in building strong trade, transport, energy, digital and people to people links and would contribute to region's prosperity.  PM Modi stated that India’s partnership will protect our societies from the threats of radical ideologies of hate, violence and terror and will unite with SCO countries to work towards this goal. The Prime Minister said India is glad to be a member of the SCO and it looks forward to fruitful outcomes particularly in the field of economic cooperation.

“With India as its full member, SCO boundaries would stretch from the Pacific to Europe; and from the Arctic to the Indian Ocean and would represent forty percent of humanity and over a billion youth”, he further added.  PM Modi stated that India brings principles that are in tune with the philosophies of the SCO.

“India has always enjoyed good relations with the Eurasian land mass. We also share global goals of stability, security and prosperity in the Asia-Pacific. “Our decision to join the international North South Transport Corridor, the Chabahar Agreement, and Ashgabat Agreement reflects this desire and intent.  India would no doubt benefit from SCO's strengths in energy, natural resources and industry.  In turn, India's strong economy and its vast market could drive economic growth in the SCO region”, PM Modi further added.

“India's capacities in trade, investments, information and communication technology, Space, S&T, agriculture, health care, small and medium scale industry can bring wide spread economic benefit to the SCO countries.  We can partner to develop human resources and institutional capacities in the region.  Since our priorities match, our development experiences would be relevant to your national needs”, PM Modi added.

The SCO is a regional grouping comprising China, Russia and four Central Asian Republics of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. The SCO summit will be held in Uzbekistan's capital Tashkent from June 23-24. "India attaches great importance to ties with Central Asia and always seeks to expand economic and people-to-people ties with the region," said a statement issued by the PMO.

Concluding his address, PM Modi said that next year, India looks forward to attending SCO meeting in Astana, as equal partners. “I wish all success to Kazhakstan in their Chairmanship of SCO in 2017. I once again thank the Government and the people of Uzbekistan for their hospitality and congratulate Excellency Karimov for conducting today’s successful meeting”, PM Modi added.