(MENAFN - Daily Outlook Afghanistan) Your Excellency PresidentSooronbay Jeenbekov,
It gives me greatpleasure to attend the 19th meeting of the SCO Council of Heads of State in thebeautiful city of Bishkek. Let me begin by thanking our host Kyrgyzstan for thegreat preparation and thoughtful arrangements for this event. China highlycommends the tremendous efforts Kyrgyzstan has made to promote the developmentof the SCO since taking over the SCO presidency last June.
The SCO hasmaintained a sound momentum of development since the Qingdao Summit. Thepropositions on development, security, cooperation, civilization and globalgovernance put forth by China at the Qingdao Summit were warmly received by allsides and added to the SCO's vision on cooperation. Guided by the ShanghaiSpirit and the consensus of the leaders, SCO members have deepened cooperationin various fields and scored new achievements in moving the organizationforward from a new starting point.
Despite immensechanges in the international situation, peace, development and win-wincooperation remain the irreversible trend of our times. As a line in theChinese classics goes, 'Those who farm observe the shift of seasons, those whogovern follow the change of the world. We need to keep a profoundunderstanding of the overriding trend toward multi-polarity and economicglobalization, draw inspiration from the wisdom of the Shanghai Spirit, andseek strength from solidarity and cooperation so as to jointly build a closerSCO community with a shared future.
First, we must makethe SCO an example of solidarity and mutual trust. The SCO has maintained a strong momentum ofdevelopment and become an important and constructive force for regionalsecurity, stability and prosperity. The ultimate reason for its success lies inthe Shanghai Spirit, which calls for continued enhancement of solidarity andmutual trust. We have on our shoulders the expectations of the people of SCOcountries and we must think and work in one mind to build the momentum we needto achieve our common goal.
The Shanghai Spiritembodies the core values and common vision of the SCO. It has to be upheld andkept up-to-date in light of the evolving circumstances and the development ofthe organization. We must abide by the purposes and principles established bythe SCO Charter and the Treaty on Long-term Good Neighborliness, Friendship andCooperation, strengthen political mutual trust, give each other greatersupport, expand convergence of interests and create more favorable conditionsto deepen bilateral and multilateral cooperation.
Second, we must makethe SCO an example of common security. Over the years,guided by the vision of common security and a shared future, SCO members havecarried out practical and highly efficient cooperation on the security frontand ensured the overall security and stability of the region. Facing gravechallenges from terrorism, extremism and other threats, we must all acttogether and with forceful measures to tackle our common challenges.
We must pursuecommon, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security. We must furtherimprove the legal foundation for security cooperation. We must step upinformation sharing, joint operations and cyber law enforcement to strengthenthe SCO's ability to respond to complex situations. We must take a multi-prongedapproach against terrorism, separatism and extremism, and fend off theresurgence of extremist and terrorist forces. As the SCO Convention onCountering Extremism enters into effect, we must further strengthen cooperationon deradicalization to curb the spread of extremist ideology. Afghanistan isneighbor to many SCO member countries and an important observer state of theorganization. We have been following the developments in Afghanistan closely.Our thoughts are with the Afghan people who are suffering from war and chaos.The SCO firmly supports the Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace andreconciliation process. We will make full use of the SCO-Afghanistan ContactGroup, step up cooperation in various fields and play a constructive role inthe early realization of peace, reconciliation, stability and development inAfghanistan. China will continue to do what it can to help with Afghanistan'speace and reconstruction.
Third, we must makethe SCO an example of mutually beneficial cooperation. SCO countries enjoy a sound momentum of development onthe whole, as evidenced by the steady increase of the region's share in theworld economy and its contribution to global growth. Our region's incomparableadvantages like rich natural endowment, a huge market, and strong scientificand technological innovation capability provide us with abundant driving forcefor development and bright prospects for cooperation. We need to seize themomentum and strive for new progress in the integrated development of the region.
We must uphold themultilateral trading system, build an open world economy, work toward moreinstitutional arrangements on trade and investment liberalization andfacilitation, and make full use of such cooperation and sharing platforms asthe China International Import Expo to pursue greater economic openness,exchange and integration in our region. It is important that we earnestlydeliver on the outcomes of the Second Belt and Road Forum for InternationalCooperation (BRF) and give full play to the unique strengths of countries inthe region to better synergize the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) with thedevelopment strategies of countries in the region as well as regionalcooperation initiatives such as the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU). We need toleverage the Joint Commission on Facilitation of International Road Transportand other relevant mechanisms to make railways, highways, and oil and gaspipelines more interconnected, so as to achieve all-round connectivity.
We need to pursueinnovation-driven development and foster new areas of cooperation such asdigital economy, e-commerce, artificial intelligence and big data. China willbe happy to set up an SCO demonstration base in Shaanxi Province for exchangeand training on agricultural technologies to strengthen cooperation on modernagriculture with other countries in the region.
Fourth, we must makethe SCO an example of inclusiveness and mutual learning. Our region is home to many ancient civilizationswhere different nations, cultures and religions have coexisted and drawnstrength from each other. We need to celebrate the diversity of civilizationsas a precious asset of our region, and say no to the idea of clash ofcivilizations. We need to uphold openness, inclusiveness and mutual learning,with a view to creating durable impetus for the lasting friendship between ourpeoples and the common development of our countries.
We need to deepen ourcooperation in culture, education, tourism, sports and media, and strengthenexchanges between women, the youth and other communities to ensure greaterinvolvement of and greater benefit for our people. Last month, an InternationalMedical Innovation and Cooperation Forum was successfully held in Fangchenggangin Guangxi Province of China, where participants from medical institutions andbusinesses of SCO countries reached extensive common ground on cooperation. Wealso support the initiative to set up an International Medical Opening-up PilotZone (China) in Fangchenggang to further promote medical innovation andcooperation within the SCO. China will be happy to host an SCO forum ontraditional medicine in due time to help improve public health and medical servicesthrough traditional medicine. Since last year, Chelyabinsk of Russia andChongqing of China have successfully held the first and second SCO Heads ofRegion Meetings. We need to earnestly implement the documents on sub-nationalcooperation to be approved by this summit and mobilize local governments andprivate actors to make sub-national cooperation a new highlight in ourpeople-to-people cooperation.
In the face ofincreasing global challenges, it is imperative that we live up to our internationalresponsibilities, stay committed to the vision of global governance based onextensive consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits, and step upcoordination and collaboration. It is imperative that we uphold theinternational system with the United Nations at its core, promotemultilateralism and free trade and make the international order more just andequitable. The SCO needs to improve its network of partnerships, encouragebroader participation in cooperation by observer states and dialogue partners,strengthen exchanges with the UN and other international and regionalorganizations, play a more active role in international and regional affairs,and jointly contribute to durable peace and common prosperity of the world.
China extendscongratulations to Kyrgyzstan for successfully hosting this summit uponwrapping up its SCO presidency, and to President Vladimir Putin for taking overthe chairmanship of the SCO Council of Heads of State. China will work with allother SCO members to provide Russia with full support in its work.
As a Kyrgyz sayinggoes, 'From solidarity comes our strength for survival. Let us act in theShanghai Spirit, stay focused and take solid actions for an even brighterfuture of the SCO.