Algeria applies to join SCO as dialogue partner

(MENAFN) Algeria has officially applied to become a dialogue partner of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), according to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. Lavrov announced the application following a council meeting of the SCO on Tuesday, as reported by TASS. He noted that Algeria, along with Laos, is in the process of obtaining dialogue partner status, which is a prerequisite for full membership in the organization.

The SCO, established in 2001 by China, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Russia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan, represents around 20 percent of the world's GDP. In recent years, the organization has expanded, with Iran joining last year and India and Pakistan becoming members in 2017. Currently, 14 countries hold dialogue partner status within the SCO, including Egypt, the only African country with this status so far. Dialogue partners can participate in specialized SCO events upon invitation.

Algeria, known for its strong partnership with Russia, is looking to diversify its economy and strengthen ties with countries like China. This application to the SCO is part of its broader strategy. Additionally, last summer, South African Foreign Affairs Minister Naledi Pandor mentioned that Algeria was among several nations that had formally applied to join BRICS, a bloc that includes Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa, Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates.

In furthering its international partnerships, Algeria signed a cooperation agreement with Russia last month to combat transnational organized crime, terrorism, extremism, and corruption. The agreement also aims to bolster cooperation in trade, energy, investment, culture, and humanitarian aid, reflecting the deepening ties between Algiers and Moscow.



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