05 July 2023

The President of Uzbekistan called for the further development and strengthening of multilateral cooperation within the framework of the SCO

On July 4, President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev, at the invitation of the Prime Minister of the Republic of India Narendra Modi, took part in a regular meeting of the Council of Heads of State of the SCO Member States, held in the format of a videoconference, the press service of the head of our state reports.

The event chaired by the Indian side was also attended by President of the Republic of Kazakhstan Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, President of the People’s Republic of China Xi Jinping, President of the Kyrgyz Republic Sadyr Japarov, Prime Minister of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan Shahbaz Sharif, President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin, President of the Republic of Tajikistan Emomali Rahmon, as well as Secretary General of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization Zhang Ming and Director of the Executive Committee of the Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure of the SCO Ruslan Mirzaev.

President of the Islamic Republic of Iran Ibrahim Raisi, President of the Republic of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko, President of Mongolia Khurelsukh Ukhnaagiin and President of Turkmenistan Serdar Berdimuhamedov, as well as UN Secretary General António Guterres and heads of international organizations attended the summit as observer countries and guests of honor.

In accordance with the agenda, an exchange of views took place on topical issues of regional and international themes, and prospects for further expansion of multifaceted and mutually beneficial cooperation were discussed.

The head of Uzbekistan, in his speech, assessed the ongoing fundamental changes in the system of international relations – the increase in geopolitical tension and escalation of conflicts, the emergence of new risks and threats to global stability and sustainable development, the growing challenges in the field of ecology, food and energy security.

“In this regard, there is an obvious urgent need to establish a constructive and trusting dialogue,” the leader of our country noted.

It was emphasized that Uzbekistan takes a principled position regarding the central role of the United Nations in the settlement of disputes and conflicts, in the search and adoption of compromise solutions in order to ensure peace and stability.

Referring to the activities of the SCO, the President of Uzbekistan drew attention to the fact that the success of this organization is ensured by strict observance of its basic principles. These are non-bloc status, a strong commitment to openness, equality and decision-making based on consensus.

– And most importantly, our cooperation is based on mutual respect and constructive perception of different interests, positions, views, cultural differences of the member states, – said the head of our state.

In order to further maintain and strengthen the leading role of the SCO as an effective international structure in addressing the most pressing issues on the regional agenda, it was proposed to conduct an inventory of the adopted agreements and decisions, audit the activities of institutions and mechanisms of cooperation, as well as accelerate the implementation of agreements on the modernization of the SCO. The need to implement a joint research project on the prospects for the development of the organization within the framework of the SCO expert forum was indicated.

Taking into account the agenda of the summit, the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan put forward specific proposals for the further development of cooperation within the framework of the organization.

In particular, the leader of our country put forward an initiative to develop a multilateral political document – the Code of Good Neighborliness, Trust and Cross-Border Partnership of the SCO.

“Its adoption will allow defining priority tasks, developing common approaches and comprehensive measures to further deepen cooperation in the new conditions,” said Shavkat Mirziyoyev.

The head of Uzbekistan stressed that the SCO states are leading in terms of industrial and innovative development, have a huge intellectual potential, rich energy and agricultural resources.

“Today, more than ever, the initiative to form a common space for increasing intra-regional trade and industrial and technological cooperation is relevant,” the leader of Uzbekistan noted.

In this context, the President of our country proposed to adopt the SCO New Economic Dialogue Program covering such areas as innovative development, digitalization and robotics, artificial intelligence, biotechnology, pharmaceuticals and other industries of the future.

In order to promote projects in these areas, the head of state proposed to hold in Uzbekistan the Week of Innovative Partnership of the regions of the SCO member states with the organization of a joint exhibition of high technologies.

Touching upon transport and communication issues, the President of Uzbekistan initiated the development of the Unified Map of Transport Interconnection of the SCO States.

“This will allow identifying bottlenecks and gaps, identifying priority measures and projects for the formation of a common, integrated transport and transit system,” he noted.

Supporting the announcement of the next year as the Year of Ecology in the SCO space, the leader of our country proposed, as part of the implementation of the Green Belt Program, to prepare a Joint Action Plan to promote regional environmental projects and introduce green technologies.

“We need closer coordination and practical interaction on the SCO platform on issues of adaptation to climate change, decarbonization through alternative, solar and wind energy, the development of smart agriculture and water conservation,” the head of our state said.

The President of Uzbekistan expressed his readiness to hold a scientific and practical conference on the development of the SCO tourism industry at the International University of Tourism and Cultural Heritage “Silk Road” in Samarkand as part of the anniversary session of the General Assembly of the World Tourism Organization in October 2023.

The Head of State dwelled separately on the relevance of conducting a coordinated policy in order to fully unlock the richest cultural and humanitarian potential of the SCO. In this regard, it is proposed to introduce the practice of forming an annual calendar of intensive cultural exchange
and to prepare the Action Program for the expansion of youth exchange – “The SCO – a space for creative ideas and initiatives of the future.”

Highlighting the efforts to intensify the activities of the SCO Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure, the leader of our country spoke in favor of continuing the practice of visiting meetings of the RATS Council, allowing this structure to increase its competence in matters of rapid response
to modern security threats.

Another important issue highlighted the difficult situation in Afghanistan.

The President stressed that the Shanghai Cooperation Organization states, which are Afghanistan’s immediate neighbors, are most interested in finding a long-term political solution.

In this regard, it was proposed to resume joint work and consultations in the format of the SCO-Afghanistan Contact Group.

As a result of the event, the heads of the SCO member states signed the following documents:

– New Delhi Declaration of the Council of Heads of State of the SCO Member States;

– Decision to approve the Strategy for Economic Development in the SCO Region until 2030;

– The decision to complete the procedure for admitting the Islamic Republic of Iran to the SCO membership and granting it the status of a SCO member state;

– The decision to sign the Memorandum of Obligations of the Republic of Belarus in order to obtain the status of a member state of the SCO.

In addition, 10 documents were adopted aimed at further enhancing economic cooperation and digital transformation, ensuring regional security and expanding cultural and humanitarian ties.

The chairmanship in the SCO was transferred to the Republic of Kazakhstan.