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EAM Jaishankar to Represent India at SCO Summit in Astana

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar will represent India at the annual summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) in Astana next week. The summit, to be held on July 3 and 4, is expected to focus on the regional security situation and ways to boost connectivity and trade.

Indian Prime Minister to skip this summit

Kazakhstan is hosting the summit in its capacity as the current chair of the grouping. The situation in Afghanistan, the Ukraine conflict and boosting overall security cooperation among the SCO member countries are expected to figure in the summit. Generally, the Indian prime minister participates in the SCO summit.

Where is Astana located?

Astana is located in central Kazakhstan on the Ishim River in a very flat, semi-arid steppe region which covers most of the country’s territory.

India’s performance

India’s association with the SCO began in 2005 as an observer country. It became a full member state of SCO at the Astana summit in 2017. India was the chair of the SCO last year. It hosted the SCO summit in the virtual format in July last year. India has shown a keen interest in deepening its security-related cooperation with the SCO and its Regional Anti-Terrorism Structure (RATS), which specifically deals with issues relating to security and defence.

About SCO Summit

The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) is a Eurasian political, economic, international security and defence organization established by China and Russia in 2001. It is the world’s largest regional organization in terms of geographic scope and population, covering approximately 80% of the area of Eurasia and 40% of the world population. As of 2021, its combined GDP was around 20% of global GDP.

Establishment of SCO

The SCO is the successor to the Shanghai Five, formed in 1996 between the People’s Republic of China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, and Tajikistan. In June 2001, the leaders of these nations and Uzbekistan met in Shanghai to announce a new organization with deeper political and economic cooperation. Pakistan became its permanent member along with India in 2017.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Capital of Kazakhstan: Astana
  • Kazakhstan Prime Minister: Oljas Bektenov,
  • Kazakhstan President: Kassym-Jomart Tokayev
  • Currency of Kazakhstan: Kazakhstani Tenge
  • Official language of Kazakhstan: Kazakh
  • Kazakhstan Continent: Europe, Asia
  • Government in Kazakhstan: Republic, Unitary state, Presidential system


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