China-proposed initiatives focus on global development, security
BEIJING -- From Wednesday to Friday, Chinese President Xi Jinping will attend the 22nd meeting of the Council of Heads of State of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in the Uzbek city of Samarkand, and pay state visits to Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.
The SCO summit takes place at a time when the world is witnessing the combined impact of a pandemic unseen in a century, a de-globalization trend and other complex factors, and the global economic governance system is facing challenges.
The Chinese president has proposed a number of important initiatives and proposals for global development and security, contributing Chinese wisdom and public goods to solving the pressing problems now facing humanity, which has been greeted with applause from the international community, not least the SCO countries.
DEVELOPMENT, SECURITY FOR ALL
Development and security are the common concerns of all countries and top priorities of global governance.
In a statement delivered via video at the general debate of the 76th session of the United Nations General Assembly in September, 2021, Xi proposed a Global Development Initiative (GDI) to steer global development toward a new stage of balanced, coordinated, and inclusive growth in face of the severe shocks of COVID-19.
The initiative calls for staying committed to development as a priority, to a people-centered approach, to benefits for all, to innovation-driven development, to harmony between man and nature and to results-oriented actions.
While delivering a keynote speech via video at the opening ceremony of the Boao Forum for Asia Annual Conference 2022 in April, Xi proposed a Global Security Initiative (GSI) to promote security for all in the world.
For Sudheendra Kulkarni, former chairman of Indian think-tank Observer Research Foundation, development and security are "two sides of the same coin and both are indivisible."
"No country can achieve security if other countries are insecure, and no country can achieve development if other countries' development is in danger. We must consider security and development in a global context," Kulkarni said.
The GDI will help accelerate the implementation of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, said Rosalia Varfalovskaya, a leading researcher at the Russian Academy of Sciences.
"Openness and cooperation between countries are the key to economic recovery in the post-pandemic era," said the researcher.
PROMOTING COMMON DEVELOPMENT
The world is now living through drastic changes and the COVID-19 pandemic, both unseen in a century, while the global economy is still battling against significant headwinds on its path to recovery.
Despite such major setbacks to global development, China is always a builder of world peace, a contributor to global development, a defender of the international order and a provider of public goods.
The Belt and Road Initiative, proposed by Xi nine years ago, has become the most popular public good in the world. Moreover, China has been sparing no effort to provide COVID-19 vaccines to as more as possible people in the world.
China-proposed development initiatives exemplify a correct understanding of global issues as well as a focus on collective progress, said Farhad Javanbakht Kheirabadi, a China scholar at Shahid Beheshti University in Iran.
As to greater SCO cooperation along with Belt and Road cooperation, Xi said when addressing the 21st meeting of the Council of Heads of State of the SCO in September, 2021, that "Belt and Road cooperation offers a major platform of promoting common development for us all."
"We need to strengthen complementarity between the Belt and Road Initiative and the development strategies of SCO countries and regional cooperation initiatives such as the Eurasian Economic Union. We should keep industrial and supply chains functioning smoothly, promote economic integration and interconnected development of all countries and deliver shared benefits to all," Xi said.
Human development indices around the world have fallen in recent decades, and "only by combining technological and resource opportunities between countries can they be raised," said Russian expert Varfalovskaya.
Muhammadjon Obidov, chairman of the Fergana branch of the Union of Journalists of Uzbekistan, drew attention to the fact that in its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, "China did not forget to take care of other countries."
"Uzbekistan received vaccines from China as well. Many Uzbeks received them, and as a result, they were protected against infection and serious illness," he said.
SHARED FUTURE FOR HUMANITY
Xi has long been calling for building a community with a shared future. Addressing the 21st meeting of the Council of Heads of State of the SCO via video link last year, Xi put forward five proposals on building "a closer SCO community with a shared future."
The SCO countries, he said, need to follow the journey of enhancing solidarity and cooperation, upholding common security, promoting openness and integration, boosting interactions and mutual learning and upholding equity and justice.
Over the years, Xi has fleshed out his vision on SCO cooperation, inspiring the group to grow into a model in the building of a new type of international relations and a contributor to the building of a community with a shared future for mankind.
For example, while attending the 20th SCO summit in 2020 via video link, Xi expounded on the vision of building an SCO community with a shared future, putting forward "a community of health for us all," "a community of security for us all," "a community of development for us all" and "a community of cultural exchanges for us all."
In their interviews with Xinhua, many experts spoke highly of China's commitment to seeking common development with the rest of the world.
The Chinese proposals attest to the Chinese leadership's preference for peaceful coexistence with all states, regardless of their social systems, and demonstrate China's commitment to maintaining cooperation with others for common development, said Obidov.
Championing mutual trust, mutual benefit, equality, consultation, respect for diversity of civilizations and pursuit of common development, the Shanghai Spirit has over the past years underpinned the SCO's development and represents the trend in contemporary international relations.
"All the (member) states, small or big, it doesn't matter ... It (SCO) does not have any hierarchy system, and the decision-making is consensus-based," said Gulru Gezer, a Turkish foreign policy advisor and former diplomat.
The member states have successfully managed to cooperate and build mutual respect and security within the SCO framework, she added.
The views don't necessarily reflect those of Qiushi Journal.