SCO and SPIEF are pivotal to the fight against unilateralism
Buddhi Prasad Sharma
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Editor's note: Buddhi Prasad Sharma is a PhD Fellow at Communication University of China and the president of Himalaya Dialogue and Leadership Foundation (HDLF). The article reflects the author's opinion, and not necessarily the views of CGTN. 

Since its founding in 2001, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) has played a constructive role in maintaining regional peace, stability and prosperity.

SCO leaders have stated that they are in favor of achieving mutual benefits and and creating a tangible environment for cooperation. This year's SCO summit has also made more commitments to address the world's existing challenges.

According to the SCO Charter and the Declaration on the Establishment of the SCO, member states have committed to contributing to a new international political and economic order, featuring democracy, justice and rationality. Analysts said that such an initiative could reduce U.S. hegemony and ultimately press the U.S. to play a more responsible role in the world, rather than an interfering and disturbing force.

Artists perform during a gala concert marking a meeting of the SCO Council of Heads of State, June 13, 2019. /VCG Photo

Artists perform during a gala concert marking a meeting of the SCO Council of Heads of State, June 13, 2019. /VCG Photo

As the world confronts an illiberal economic order due to hurdles on the free flow of capital by some Western countries, particularly the U.S., tangible efforts are also being displayed by the other side of the world to resolve the existing impasse.

The 23rd St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) last week also gave a strong platform for world leaders to commit to cooperation against anti-globalization forces. At the forum, Chinese President Xi Jinping opined about the need to accelerate more collective projects for sustainable development and global governance. These are hugely significant issues that the world needs to accomplish.

At SPIEF, President Xi emphasized that the current global governance system is confronting unprecedented lopsidedness, while emerging market economies and developing countries are expanding at an unprecedented speed, with deep competition brought on by a new wave of technology.

Some Western countries have not met the rise of the East positively. With the economic crisis of 2008, they realized that the bases of their economic structures are becoming very loose and irrelevant.

The problem is that though the West sees the weaknesses in their economic order, they have ignored solutions by the East. So as President Xi said, forums like the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), SCO and Eurasian Economic Union are the best platforms to share thoughts and find solutions for the global community's challenges. 

Russian President Vladimir Putin invites Chinese President Xi Jinping for a cruise tour on the Neva River in St. Petersburg, Russia, June 6, 2019. /Xinhua Photo

Russian President Vladimir Putin invites Chinese President Xi Jinping for a cruise tour on the Neva River in St. Petersburg, Russia, June 6, 2019. /Xinhua Photo

Unilateralism, trade protectionism and backlash against globalization have grown in recent years. In this context, SCO leaders'commitments can send a strong message to the global community to build consensus against those forces.

In the security sphere, SCO is working to promote counter-terrorism intelligence exchanges and joint actions, strengthen legal mechanisms and capacity building measures, combat terrorism, separatism, extremism, drug trafficking, transnational organized crime and cyber crime. Experts said that regional security is crucial for the smooth implementation of the BRI and other approaches.

This year's SCO summit in Bishkek, the capital of Kyrgyzstan, helps to further develop the spirit of multilateralism and globalization.

Within the last 18 years, the SCO has grown into the world's largest regional organization for comprehensive cooperation in terms of both the area it covers and the population it represents. Cooperation among member states has largely deepened in various fields like economy, technology, culture, security, people-to-people exchanges and so on. 

Without openly sharing thoughts, experiences and issues, the world cannot resolve the challenges it faces. While the West seems to be backing away from established norms of globalization, the rest of the world needs to take initiative and stand for new era of globalization. In reality, this is the theme of BRI spirit and the SCO goals. 

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