SCO Summit Adopts Astana Declaration, Reaches Strategic Agreements

ASTANA — The 24th summit of the Council of Heads of State of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) on July 4 adopted the Astana Declaration and approved 25 strategic documents covering energy, security, trade, finance, and information security.

Photo credit: Akorda

During the summit, SCO member states endorsed the Initiative On World Unity for a Just Peace, Harmony and Development, initially proposed by Kazakhstan. According to the Astana Declaration, member states underscored the SCO’s role in bolstering global peace, security, and stability and shaping a new democratic, equitable international political and economic order, inviting the global community to join the initiative. 

The Council of Heads of State – Members of the SCO also adopted the SCO Development Strategy until 2035, outlining collective contributions in light of Belarus gaining membership status. Key resolutions included the cooperation programs to combat terrorism, separatism, and extremism for 2025-2027, the Anti-Drug Strategy for the next five years, and its corresponding Action Program. Strategies for energy cooperation until 2030 and the Economic Development Strategy’s Action Plan until 2030 were also approved. Additionally, resolutions encompassed the Association of Investors, programs for developing cooperation in protected areas and eco-tourism, and mechanisms for financing SCO project activities.

Further commitments included signing a memorandum of understanding between the SCO Secretariat and the Central Asian Regional Information Coordination Center to combat illicit drug trafficking. The summit also saw the adoption of an interaction plan among member states on international information security issues.

The member states additionally signed statements affirming principles of good neighborliness, trust, and partnership, ensuring the safety of drinking water and sanitation, and promoting effective waste management. They also formalized an agreement on environmental protection cooperation among SCO governments.

With the summit’s conclusion, the People’s Republic of China will assume the SCO chairmanship for the next term, and Qingdao will be appointed the SCO’s tourism and cultural capital for 2024-2025.

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