President Xi is attending the summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan and the Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia (CICA) in Dushanbe, Tajikistan.
The intensive interactions between leaders have significant meaning to the whole region and set an example for the world of a new type of international relations.
Central Asia is the place of origin of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and the SCO. Both Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan are founding members of the SCO and were the first countries to support and join the BRI. Tajikistan was the first to sign a cooperation MOU with China on the Silk Road Economic Belt.
President Xi’s visit to the two countries will not only improve China-Kyrgyzstan relations and China-Tajikistan relations, but will also greatly promote BRI construction and development of the SCO.
People can easily see that the US has not joined the BRI or SCO. Washington even resists them. Although other Western countries also have some doubts, the BRI and SCO have still made world-renowned achievements in just a few years, reflecting their strong vitality and development potential. Their success provides historical inspiration for international politics.
First, the US and the West are not the only parts of our huge world. The non-Western world’s development has been lagging behind that of the West. Non-Western countries are dominated in the international system. Consequently, the West tends to ignore these countries’ interests, demands and even existence.
The BRI and SCO show the world that in addition to the West, there is a huge stage that is full of vitality and possibilities. As the China-US trade war attracts the world’s attention and concern, we need to be more visionary to break out of the limitations brought on by a narrow-minded US.
Second, a new model of international relations, which is full of oriental wisdom, is around the corner. Countries both big and small can relate to each other on an equal footing and share mutual respect and benefits. Countries with different values and political systems can build partnerships rather than alliances.
A community with a shared future for mankind is not just a slogan, it can also be practised in reality. Guided by such philosophy, China-Kyrgyzstan relations and China-Tajikistan relations have peaked in history. The BRI and SCO keep moving forward despite the US and other Western countries’ cold shoulder.
Third, neither the BRI nor the SCO is exclusive. They are open and friendly to the US and the West. Washington is vigilant against them, and the main reason is its geopolitical competition mindset.
If the US cannot change that mindset, the country will only regard small countries like Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan as pawns. It will assume that China has the same mindset as well. Many current conflicts in the world are rooted in different strategic thinking.
The BRI and SCO were proposed by China. This is China’s important contribution to world governance, and the contribution is shared by the world.
As trade protectionism and unilateralism are bringing unprecedented impacts to free trade and multilateralism, the BRI and the SCO show their outstanding value. One day in the future, the world will sincerely appreciate China’s efforts.