On 13th March, 2019, Center for Global & Strategic Studies (CGSS), Islamabad organized a Roundtable Session on “Shanghai Cooperation Organization; Future Prospects and Regional Connectivity”.
The Roundtable had the participation of the Head of the Think Tanks/Representatives of the SCO Member and Observer States including China, Kyrgyz Republic, Russia, Uzbekistan, Belarus and Iran. These foreign delegates included:
a. Professor Sun Zhuangzhi - Secretary General of Center for Shanghai Cooperation Organization Study, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Beijing, China,
b. Dr. Leonid Gusev - Expert, Moscow State Institute of International Relations, Moscow, Russia
c. Mr. Bakhtiyor Mustafayev - Head of The Institute for Strategic and Regional Studies (ISRS) under the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan, Tashkent, Uzbekistan
d. Mr. Seitzhan Apyshev, Adviser to Director, National Institute for Strategic Studies of the Kyrgyz Republic (NISS KR), Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic
e. Prof. Elena Dostanko - Head, Academic Affairs Unit, Belarusian State University, Minsk, Belarus
f. Mr. Seyed Majid Ghafelehbashi - Senior Research Fellow, Institute of Political and International Studies (IPIS), Tehran, Iran
Major General Syed Khalid Amir Jaffery HI(M), (Retd) who welcomed and thanked the worthy participants of the session. Mr. Naveed Safdar Bokhari – Director General, SCO, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Government of Pakistan stated that SCO is a pivotal organization to promote closer ties. Diverse nature of cooperation exists within SCO. Pakistan has a lot to offer to the SCO region.
The visiting foreign dignitaries provided with their valuable input to the participants of the session. The agenda points of the discussion were promotion of regional connectivity in terms of cooperation in trade, commerce and development initiatives, promotion of art and culture among the members of SCO, enhancement of tourism, people to people contact among the SCO region. The foreign dignitaries appreciated the efforts of Pakistan in the peace, stability and progress of the region and vowed to further enhance bilateral and multilateral cooperation through initiatives in various fields.
During the session, several presentations/briefings were given to the visiting foreign dignitaries. Dr. Ahsan Abbas – Senior Research Fellow, Center of Excellence, China Pakistan Economic Corridor presented his views on the trade, industry cooperation and regional connectivity. Ms. Hina Gul – Deputy Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Government of Pakistan stated that Pakistan has signed two trade agreements through the platform of SCO including trade services and trade facilitation.
Mr. Maaz Mahmoood – President All Pakistan Business Forum briefed the participants about exploring new avenues through Shanghai Cooperation Organization. Mr. Zahid Latif – Former President Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industry stated that Pakistan has improved its position by climbing up 11 places in ease of doing business.