The Guardian 21 February, 2007

Nepal aims to join SCO

Nepal is working towards acquiring membership of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), from which the country could benefit by getting oil and energy support, said a local newspaper The Kathmandu Post last week.

"Once we become a member of the SCO, it would help Nepal where there is an oil crisis in Nepal", said the Prime Ministerís Foreign Affairs adviser Mr Chalise.

Senior government officials said SCO membership would end "Nepalís 100 percent dependency on India" for oil.

"Nepal should acquire its membership and we should be trying to import oil from these countries", said Chalise. "The prime minister has already been convinced to acquire membership. Itís only a matter of time."

The SCO was founded in Shanghai in June 2001 and aims to promote regional security and fight against terrorism. It comprises China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan with India, Pakistan, Mongolia and Iran having observer status.

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