According to Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Secretary General Zhang Ming, Pakistan is strategically located to provide landlocked SCO members with shorter sea access.
During a speech at the Institute of Strategic Studies (ISS) here on Friday as part of his four-day visit to Pakistan, he said the connectivity would facilitate trade among SCO member states and even beyond. He stated that the transportation corridors would benefit all SCO members, creating a win-win situation.
He went into great detail about the SCO’s structure, functions, and history. To shed light on the differences between the member countries, he stated that the organization was founded on the guiding principles of the Shanghai Spirit. Although it began as a regional security organization, it later expanded its operations to include the economy, politics, and people-to-people contacts. The SCO was growing. It began with the admission of Pakistan and India as permanent members. Iran applied for full membership, and if it met the membership criteria, it would be granted permanent membership status. He stated that the SCO family now had 21 members.
He stated that the SCO has been working to improve cooperation among member countries, particularly in the area of economic development, since its inception. He emphasized that the SCO operated on a consensus-based principle, with all members being equally empowered.
He stated that the SCO was established 20 years ago, when the context and needs were different. Many geopolitical and geoeconomic changes were occurring in the international arena at the time. As a result, he concluded, the SCO should adapt in accordance with its functional efficiency.