Xi Put Forward Five Suggestions for the Future of SCO

By Xing Guangcheng

In his speech at the SCO Qingdao Summit, President Xi Jinping laid out in a systematical way China’s understanding and role of the SCO, and put forward a new concept, new blueprint for its future development. The core idea is that the SCO should abide by the Charter of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization and the Treaty on Long-term Good-neighborly Relations, Friendship and Cooperation.

The SCO is based on the principles of non-alignment, non-confrontation and non-targeting of third parties. The summit is significant innovation in the theory and practice of international relations, as it has created a new model of regional cooperation and further promoted the “Shanghai spirit”.

Δ Chinese President Xi Jinping chairs the 18th Meeting of the Council of Heads of Member States of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in Qingdao, east China’s Shandong Province, June 10, 2018. Xi delivered a speech during the meeting.

New approaches for future development

President Xi put forward five suggestions for the future development of the SCO: gather the power of unity and mutual trust, consolidate the common ground of peace and security, promote mutual development and prosperity, increase human communication and cooperation, and jointly expand the network of international cooperation.

Among these five points, the second, third and fourth emphasize the three pillars of the SCO — cooperation on security, the economy, and people’s lives — and the fifth emphasizes the need for the SCO to further expand its membership.

President Xi regards maintaining and consolidating the strength of unity and mutual trust as an important task for the SCO and a powerful driving force for its future development.

Concrete measures for China’s contribution

The SCO Qingdao Summit has defined the concrete measures through which China will contribute: in the next three years, China will make use of the China-SCO International Judicial Exchange and Cooperation Training Base to train 2,000 law enforcement personnel for all the member states and strengthen their law enforcement capacity; the Chinese Government supports the establishment of the China-SCO Local Economic and Trade Cooperation Demonstration Zone in Qingdao and has established the China-SCO Legal Service Commission; China will set aside RMB 30 billion in equivalent funding as a special loan within the framework of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization Bank Union; in the next 3 years, China will provide 3,000 training places in human resource development for SCO member states to enhance public understanding and recognition of the SCO; and China will use the Fengyun 2 meteorological satellite to provide meteorological services to all SCO members.

These measures demonstrate the importance that China attaches to the SCO and the spread of its contribution.

Δ The 18th Meeting of the Council of Heads of Member States of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) is held in Qingdao, east China’s Shandong Province, June 10, 2018. Chinese President Xi Jinping chaired the meeting and delivered a speech.

Concept of global governance

With respect to “solving the difficult problems of the time and dealing with the risks and challenges” President Xi underlined the importance of China’s Five Development Concepts: “open, inclusive, coordinated, innovative, and green”.

Member states should establish a common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security concept, uphold open, inclusive, mutually beneficial and win-win cooperation, establish an equal, communicative, and inclusive cultural perspective characterized by mutual learning, and follow a path of global governance based on the principle of achieving shared growth through discussion and collaboration.

Today’s world is filled with various turbulences, with serious problems of security, stability and development. The new concept of development, security, cooperation, culture and global governance put forward by China provides practical ideas and solutions for addressing these complex problems.

The Qingdao Summit should be used to carry forward the “Shanghai spirit”. Only by strengthening solidarity and cooperation can the SCO member countries achieve lasting stability and development.


Xing Guangcheng, reseacher and head of China Frontier Research Institute in Chinese Academy of Social Sciences