External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj will articulate India's position in dealing with growing menace of terrorism at the summit meeting on Friday which is likely to set the ball rolling in granting India a full SCO membership.

India, one of the largest energy consumers in the world, thinks getting the SCO membership will help it participate in major gas and oil exploration projects in Central Asia. The SCO has amongst its members three largest energy producers in the world- Russia, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan.

India has been an observer at the SCO since 2005 and has generally participated at the ministerial-level at summits of the grouping which focuses mainly on security and economic cooperation in the Eurasian space.

Both Russia and China have been favoring India's permanent membership at the SCO, saying joining of the group by the largest democracy will add weight to the organization.

It is in SCO's interest to have a large democracy like India.

Top Indian officials here said India has formally applied for membership of the grouping recently which will provide it a major platform in pushing its interests in terms of trade and security related issues.

An SCO membership, India feels, will also give it more access to major gas and oil exploration projects in central Asia.

"We are looking forward to the SCO summit. It may pass documents on opening of membership of the SCO. India has recently expressed interest in joining the SCO and submitted a formal application," Ajay Bisaria, Joint Secretary (EURASIA), said.

The Indian government is of the view that SCO membership will offer India more opportunities to work closely with China in certain areas including in Afghanistan and Central Asian region.

The Chinese side, of let, has been encouraging India to join the SCO and play a larger role as it sees areas of congruence.

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