Foreign Ministry stresses non-exclusivity of SCO’s Central Asia oil talks

BEIJING, June 6 — The Foreign Ministry has played down talk of rivalry between the US and the countries of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) for central Asian oil.

In response to a press conference question asking for comment on rivalry between US and China in the context of the upcoming SCO summit June 15, Foreign Ministry Spokesman Liu Jianchao said the SCO makes an important contribution to regional peace, stability, security and economic development.

“Cooperation within the framework of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization encompasses many fields,” he said. “It started with security cooperation and then expanded to the economic, trade, cultural and educational fields. The oil cooperation is an important part of the economic and trade cooperation, is conducted on the basis of equality and mutual benefit, and in a non-exclusive way,” said Liu.

“We’re willing to have connection in various forms with other countries and international organizations, and to strengthen mutual trust,” he said.

The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation is a permanent intergovernmental international organisation proclaimed in Shanghai on June 15, 2001 by six countries – China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

On June 15, 2006, Shanghai will host a jubilee meeting of the Council of Heads of SCO Member States, dedicated to the Organisation’s fifth anniversary.

“This is set to become the most important event in this year’s activity of the SCO and requires special attention of the member states,” says the organisation.

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