For Peace, Development and Enduring Friendship
Remarks by H.E. Hu Jintao
Astana, 15 June 2011
Your Excellency President Nazarbayev,
It gives me great pleasure to join you in celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). Our meeting takes place at a pivotal moment in the development of our Organization. Let me begin by thanking the host country and President Nazarbayev for the meticulous preparations and thoughtful arrangements made for our meeting.
On this day ten years ago, the SCO was founded to answer the calling of the time. This innovative development reflected the trend toward world peace and development and the common desire of the people of our countries for peace, cooperation and development.
In the past ten years, the member states have worked in close coordination and unity to develop this Organization and have scored major achievements.
We have improved the institutional framework of our Organization and established a multi-tiered mechanism of regular meetings. We have established two permanent bodies, namely the Secretariat and the Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure. With these mechanisms in place, we have had timely and full communication and coordination among the member states.
We have laid a solid legal basis for our Organization. We have signed over 100 important cooperation documents, including the Charter of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization and the Treaty of Long-Term Good-Neighborliness, Friendship and Cooperation, thus ensuring a firm legal foundation for the SCO's development and cooperation between the member states.
We have created a new model for state-to-state relations. The codification of the idea of "enduring friendship and lasting peace" marks an unprecedented level of good-neighborliness, trust, unity and coordination among the member states.
We have acted in the "Shanghai Spirit". The member states have sought common ground, shelved differences, drawn upon each other's strengths and realized harmonious co-existence under the guidance of the "Shanghai Spirit" featuring mutual trust, mutual benefit, equality, consultation, respect for diverse civilizations and pursuit of common development. This is the fundamental reason for the continuous growth of our Organization and provides the international community with invaluable experience in searching for a new kind of security thinking and state-to-state relations.
We have upheld regional peace. It was our Organization that first articulated the clear goal of countering terrorism, separatism and extremism. We have held over ten joint counter-terrorism exercises and acted as a strong deterrent to the "three forces", drug trafficking and transnational organized crime, thus playing an active role in securing regional peace and stability.
We have promoted the common development of the countries in the region. We have signed the Program of Multilateral Trade and Economic Cooperation, proposed to establish an energy club, an SCO development bank and a cooperation mechanism on food security, and made major progress toward regional economic integration. China has pledged a total of over 12 billion US dollars of concessional loans to other member states to facilitate large projects beneficial to the common development of the region.
We have carried out extensive cooperation with the outside world. Our Organization has admitted four observer states and two dialogue partners, and established ties and carried out cooperation with major international and regional organizations such as the United Nations. We have also taken an active part in the reconstruction of Afghanistan. All of this has led to sustained rise in the international standing and influence of our Organization.
These achievements amply illustrate that our Organization is an important guarantor of regional peace and stability and a strong catalyst for the common development and prosperity of all countries in the region. As such, the SCO holds greater promise in its future development.
We have entered the second decade of the 21st century. The world is undergoing major development, changes and adjustments. The trend toward peace, development and cooperation is gaining momentum, and the pursuit of security and development through cooperation has become the consensus of the international community. Meanwhile, international and regional hotspot issues still flare up now and then, and many new problems and challenges are emerging. Therefore, upholding world peace and promoting common development is an even more daunting task than ever.
The coming decade is crucial to the development of our Organization as well as the development of the member states and the stability of our region. We should have a high sense of responsibility for the peace, development and stability of the member states, our region and the entire world, keep to the right direction and make every effort to turn the SCO into a regional cooperation organization that features coherent mechanisms, smooth coordination, all-round cooperation, openness and harmony.
We should draw up a general plan for the development of our Organization in the next ten years that focuses on the following tasks:
First, we should stay committed to good-neighborly relations and build a harmonious region. We should make continued efforts to implement the Treaty on Long-Term Good-Neighborliness, Friendship and Cooperation, strengthen communication and consultation on each other's core interests, and increase mutual trust and support. Irrespective of the different sizes of member states, we should continue to treat each other as equals and with sincerity, and make decisions on issues important to our Organization by consensus.
Second, we should strengthen our Organization's capacity for countering immediate threats and ensure long-term peace and stability of the region. We should improve the mechanism of security cooperation on the basis of identifying the core issues and key factors affecting regional security. On the basis of respecting national independence, sovereignty, territorial integrity and the will of our people,we should enhance the action and rapid response capability of our Organization. We should keep up our joint efforts against the "three forces", drug trafficking and transnational organized crime, and conduct joint counter-terrorism exercises on a regular basis.
Third, we should promote economic integration and common development of countries in the region. We should expand cooperation areas and promote trade and investment facilitation. We should increase intra-regional connectivity of transportation, energy and telecommunications infrastructure, move faster to set up regional cooperation mechanisms on energy, financial and food security, intensify cooperation in non-resource sectors and sectors that concern the people's wellbeing, and fully tap our internal dynamism for crisis response and sustainable development. China will continue to provide concessional loans as we have promised. We will work to build the Euro-Asia Economic Forum and the China-Eurasia Expo into platforms for regional economic cooperation so as to better promote regional economic development and prosperity.
Fourth, we should expand people-to-people and cultural linkages to carry on our friendship. We should continue to vigorously expand people-to-people and cultural exchanges, and broaden the channels for such exchanges. We should build networks for education and medical services, and carry out tourism and sports cooperation so as to deepen mutual understanding between our people and strengthen support for the development of our Organization.
The observer states and dialogue partners of our Organization as well as Afghanistan are our good neighbors and partners. Over the years, they have devoted energy and made contribution to the development of our Organization. China supports the continued cooperation between our Organization and international and regional partners in an open and transparent fashion so as to create even better conditions for the development of all countries in the region.
China will take over the SCO presidency after this meeting. The parties have agreed to designate the year as the SCO's "year of good-neighborliness and friendship". We should carry forward the "Shanghai Spirit", deepen mutually-beneficial cooperation, ensure peace and development, and promote enduring friendship between the member states. China is convinced that with the unremitting efforts of all parties,our Organization will brave the wind and waves and sail to a brighter future!