PM Modi lands in Qingdao for SCO summit, set to meet President Xi

RSTV Bureau
The Prime Minister landed in China to join the SCO Summit. This will be India's first SCO Summit as a full member. On the sidelines of the Summit, he will meet leaders of other member nations and discuss ways to boost bilateral cooperation. ( Photo: Twitter/@PMOIndia)

The Prime Minister landed in China to join the SCO Summit. This will be India’s first SCO Summit as a full member. On the sidelines of the Summit, he will meet leaders of other member nations and discuss ways to boost bilateral cooperation. ( Photo: Twitter/@PMOIndia)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi landed in Qingdao in China on Saturday afternoon to participate in the 18th Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Summit, which begins today.

The Prime Minister is scheduled to address the two-day summit on Sunday.

Later today, PM Modi will meet Chinese President Xi Jinping and hold bilateral talks, taking forward India-China ties on the sidelines of the SCO Summit.

During this meeting the two leaders are expected to explore ways to deepen ties in areas of trade and investment besides reviewing the overall bilateral cooperation. PM Modi will also hold nearly half a dozen bilateral meetings with leaders of other SCO countries.

The meeting with President Xi, comes a month after the two leaders met informally in Wuhan in April, 2018. At the informal summit, the two leaders exchanged views on solidifying the relations between the two Asian powers.

Discussions in the summit will take place on diverse issues ranging from combating terrorism, separatism and extremism to promoting cooperation in connectivity, commerce, customs, law, health and agriculture, protecting the environment and mitigating disaster risk and fostering people-to-people relations.

This is the first time India is taking part in the summit as full member.  “I am excited to lead the Indian delegation for our first-ever meeting of the Council as a full member,” Modi said in a Facebook post.

“In the last one year since India became a full member of the SCO, our interaction with the organisation and its member states has grown considerably in these areas. I believe that the Qingdao Summit will further enrich the SCO agenda, while heralding a new beginning for India’s engagement with the SCO,” he said.

The SCO summit is likely to focus on opportunities for regional cooperation among members. India is likely to push for regional cooperation and counter terrorism measures.

The prime minister’s programme includes participation in the welcome banquet hosted by the Chinese president on the evening of June 9. On June 10, the leaders of SCO nations will address the summit.

Founded in 2001, the SCO currently comprises eight member states, India, Kazakhstan, China, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan. India and Pakistan were admitted to the SCO last year.

(With Inputs from Agency)