November 19, 2013
An agreement opening road transportation between Asia and Europe is expected to be signed at the upcoming 12th prime ministers’ meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) member states, a Chinese diplomat said on Wednesday.
Vice Foreign Minister Cheng Guoping told a press conference that the agreement would create conditions for an Asia-Europe transport corridor between Lianyungang in east China and St. Petersburg in northwest Russia.
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang will attend the meeting on Nov. 28 and 29 in Tashkent, capital of Uzbekistan, at the invitation of Uzbek Prime Minister Shavkat Mirziyaev, Cheng said.
After years of negotiations, the SCO member states now intend to reach an agreement, Cheng said, adding that members may open their roads to each other in 2017.
The SCO, whose members include Kazakhstan, China, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, is an inter-governmental organization founded in the Chinese city of Shanghai on June 15, 2001.
Afghanistan, India, Iran, Mongolia and Pakistan are observer states to the SCO, and Belarus, Turkey and Sri Lanka are dialogue partners of the organization.