President Vladimir Putin: Ladies and Gentlemen,
The Russian side is satisfied with the results of the meeting. We made serious progress in the formation of mechanisms within the SCO, and we note that the work on organisational registration of the SCO is going according to plan. In 2004, it will be quite possible to set the mechanisms going.
Today, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation is already an important factor of stability in the region. We also plan to widen the sphere of interaction, mainly in trade and economic cooperation. Practical steps in this direction will be discussed by government heads of our countries in autumn this year. Later on, we also plan to draw attention to such spheres of interaction as science, education, and protection of the environment. And of course, we intend to increase our efforts in fighting such threats as terrorism, extremism and drug trafficking.
Following tradition, today we discussed a wide range of international problems. I will only mention one important aspect – we have a common position on the system of international relations.
We have no alternative to the UN. And we are in favour of increasing the effectiveness of its mechanisms and instruments. We think that providing reliable global stability and regulating local conflicts is only possible on the basis of norms of international law.
I also want to note the general interest of SCO member countries in strengthening the organisation.
In conclusion, I would also like to congratulate Zhang Deguang on his appointment as first executive secretary of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation. I am certain that his professionalism and wide experience as a diplomat will help to solve the tasks faced by the organisation, and I wish him every success.
Thank you for your attention.