Vitaly Vorobyov, the president's special envoy for SCO affairs, said in an interview with the Vremya Novostei daily that the Council dealt with SCO economic issues. He said that the SCO had approved a long-term economic cooperation program.
"Most likely, the heads of governments will discuss some specific projects this year," he said.
According to Vorobyov, the SCO does not aim to create a free-trade zone.
"The organization's long-term program says that economic cooperation is aimed at creating favorable conditions for the free movement of resources, capital and people," he said. "This is a complex matter because the SCO member states are parties to different economic associations."
Vorobyov said China and Kyrgyzstan have already joined the World Trade Organization (WTO), and that other regional economic organizations include the Eurasian Economic Community (EurAsEC), the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) and the recently established Central Asian Cooperation Organization. The SCO is looking for solutions for all of its members, he said
According to Vorobyov, the SCO is setting up a non-governmental structure, the SCO Business Council.
"Intensive negotiations are underway to establish an SCO Development Fund to finance the organization's projects. The Fund should use money from entrepreneurs, private and banking structures," the envoy said.