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SCO enjoys bright future in promoting regional co-op

2013-09-12 08:57 Xinhua Web Editor: Mo Hong'e

The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) is a young mechanism with a promising prospect in pooling regional resources to boost common security and development, says a Kazakh expert.

The SCO is one of only a few Eurasian organizations dedicated to promoting regional security, Elnara Baynazarova noted in a recent interview with Xinhua.

Since it was established 12 years ago, the SCO has made great achievements, she said, adding that countries in the region can use the platform to communicate with each other, seek compromises and coordinate their stances.

Noting that the SCO further increased its influence last year by accepting Afghanistan as an observer and Turkey as a dialogue partner, she said the SCO has a bright future in safeguarding regional security.

The organization has crafted a number of promising cooperation plans covering information security, banking, free trade, transportation and other areas, noted the expert.

With some of the proposed plans yet to be implemented, she said, SCO members should make political decisions and take concrete measures to carry them out.

With an eye to the future, Baynazarova said the SCO needs to strengthen multilateral cooperation, improve its organizational structure and secure the finances of its secretariat.

When the SCO mulls a multilateral cooperation plan, members which think conditions are not ripe for them to participate should be allowed to temporarily stay out of it, she proposed, saying that such a pragmatic approach would prevent some promising plans from withering on the vine.

Commenting on the role the SCO can play in ensuring regional stability and security after the withdrawal of NATO forces from Afghanistan in 2014, Baynazarova said it should focus on soft power.

As a peace-oriented organization, the SCO can use its soft power to help Afghanistan solve its social problems and improve people's livelihood, said the expert.

SCO members can help the war-torn country promote education and health care, increase employment, reduce child mortality, produce clean water and generate electricity, she added.

The SCO, she said, can also help Afghanistan participate in regional economic integration, including letting it take part in the construction of a regional transport corridor.

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