Entry of India and Pakistan into SCO to bolster grouping's strength: Xi Jinping

Source: PTI | By Sajjad Qazi | Published on 10th June 2018, 9:23 PM | Global News |

Qingdao: The entry of India and Pakistan into the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation would bolster its strength, Chinese President Xi Jinping said today as he welcomed Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Pakistan President Mamnoon Hussain to the eight-member grouping.

Prime Minister Modi and Pakistan President Hussain are attending the summit for the first time after both countries were admitted as members of the Beijing-based Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) last year.

Xi, also the host of the 18th SCO summit, in his opening remarks said that the presence of Prime Minister Modi and Pakistan President Hussain at the meeting here in the east Chinese port city was "of great historic significance."

“The SCO enjoys strong vitality and momentum of cooperation,” Xi said, attributing the organisation’s standing to the Shanghai Spirit. He called for the pursuit of common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security.

"We should reject the Cold War mentality and confrontation between blocs and oppose the practices of seeking the absolute security of oneself at the expense of the security of other countries, so as to achieve security of all," he said.

He said countries should work for promoting open and inclusive cooperation for win-win outcomes.

"We should reject self-centred, short-sighted and closed-door policies. We should uphold WTO rules and support the multilateral trading system so as to build an open world economy," Xi said amidst a looming trade war between China and the United States over tariffs.

Equality, mutual learning, dialogue and inclusiveness between cultures should be championed, so that "we overcome cultural misunderstanding, clash and supremacy through exchanges, mutual learning and coexistence," said Xi.

He called for adhering to extensive consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits in global governance, steadily reforming and improving the global governance system, and pushing all countries to jointly build a community with a shared future for humanity.

He called for further carrying forward the 'Shanghai Spirit' to surmount difficulties, defuse risks and meet challenges.

"We should uphold innovative, coordinated, green, open and inclusive development, achieve coordinated social and economic progress of various countries and resolve issues caused by unbalanced development," he said. "We should bridge the gap in development and promote shared prosperity," he said.

The SCO member states need to actively implement the 2019-2021 programme of cooperation for combating terrorism, separatism and extremism, he said. Member nations should enhance cooperation on defence security, law enforcement security and information security, Xi said.

He also called for efforts to give full play to the role of the SCO-Afghanistan Contact Group to facilitate peace and reconstruction in war-torn Afghanistan.

Xi said that the SCO members need to build a powerful engine to achieve common development. "China will set up a 30-billion-yuan (USD 4.7 billion) equivalent special lending facility within the framework of the SCO Inter-bank Consortium," Xi said. He said in the next three years, China will provide 3,000 training opportunities of human resources development for SCO member states to enhance public understanding of and support for the SCO family.

The SCO has eight member countries which represents around 42 percent of the world's population and 20 percent of the global GDP.

Besides Prime Minister Modi and President Xi, other leaders attending the summit include Russian President Vladimir Putin and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.

The SCO was founded at a summit in Shanghai in 2001 by the presidents of Russia, China, Kyrgyz Republic, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. India and Pakistan became its members last year.

Read These Next

California searches for 1,000 missing in deadliest fire

Recovery teams with cadaver dogs pressed on with their search for more victims in a flame-ravaged northern California town on Friday as authorities sought clues to the fate of more than 1,000 people reported missing in ...

Saudi Crown Prince ordered Khashoggi’s killing: CIA

The CIA has concluded that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman personally ordered the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, despite the Saudi government’s denials that the de facto ruler was involved, according to ...

China lauds Pakistan efforts to make peace with India

In a statement that is unlikely to go down well in New Delhi, China on Sunday endorsed Pakistan’s “efforts for improvement of Pakistan-India relations and for settlement of outstanding disputes between the two ...