PM Narendra Modi addresses plenary session, joins SCO leaders for group photo

Membership to the Shanghai Cooperation Organization will strengthen India’s relations with Central Asia

India, along with Pakistan, became the full-time member during Astana summit in June 2017.

Xi conveyed to the Indian side that China's defence minister and minister of public security, who is equivalent to India's home minister, will visit New Delhi this year.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Friday that he is "excited to lead the Indian delegation for our first-ever meeting of the Council as a full member", and looks forward to "discussing a wide range of subjects" with other member states.

President Mamnoon congratulated President Xi Jinping on his re-election as President of People's Republic of China and General Secretary of Communist Party of China (CPC).

PM Modi arrived at Qingdao in China on Saturday afternoon to attend the two-day long SCO summit, leading the first-ever delegation of India after the country became a full member of the grouping previous year.

Addressing a press briefing here, Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale said that President Xi suggested to Prime Minister Modi that India and China should set up a new bilateral trade target of $100 billion by 2020.

"Met this year's SCO host, President Xi Jinping this evening. We will organize a SCO food festival and a Buddhist festival in India".

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India agreed to allow Bank of China to open a branch in Mumbai, while the Chinese president accepted Modi's invitation to attend an informal bilateral meeting in India next year, The Indian Express reported.

The summit will focus on enhancing cooperation to address the challenges of terrorism, drug trafficking, cross-border crimes, information security threats, Liao Jinrong, head of the worldwide cooperation department with the Ministry of Public Security, said at a media briefing ahead of the summit, state-run Xinhua news agency reported. "Their first meeting will be held this year", Gokhale said.

President Mamnoon Hussain on Saturday held a bilateral meeting with his Iranian counterpart President Hassan Rouhani and discussed relations between the two countries and the prevailing situation in the region, said a statement.

The two leaders also spoke about ensuring greater people-to-people contact, with Xi talking about the popularity of Indian films like Dangal, Bahubaali and Hindi Medium in China. The two leaders also agreed to continue close coordination and cooperation on all issues of mutual interest.

India had said past year that China did not stick to an agreement to share hydrological data, or scientific information on the movement and quality of water, for the Brahmaputra. "One of the outcomes of today's meeting is that we have agreed we will move forward in identifying a specific project initially in the area of capacity building", Gokhale said.

He said next round of Special Representative-level talks on boundary question will be held during second half of this year.

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