Chinese President Hu Jintao on Thursday pledged a loan of $10 billion to support economic cooperation within the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).
The loan will also be used to aid the development of SCO members, he said while addressing the 12th SCO summit in Beijing.
Hu said China would help train 1,500 experts from other member-countries in the next three years and provide 30,000 government scholarships and invite 10,000 Confucius Institute teachers and students to come to China for research and study over the next decade. "We should build the SCO into a driving force to boost regional economic development," he was quoted by the Chinese state media as telling the summit.
Urging all SCO members to work hard in constructing infrastructure like railways, roads, aviation, telecommunications and power grids to promote regional connectivity, he called for the establishment of a development bank, food security cooperation mechanism, energy club and seed banks, and promotion of trade and investment facilitation.
All members should also increase their future economic competitiveness, Hu said, adding that they should step up their cooperation in technology, culture, education and medicine.
Calling on the SCO member-states to make the organization a "fortress of regional security and stability, Hu urged them to fully implement the 2001 Shanghai Pact on fighting the "three evil forces" of terrorism, separatism and extremism, establish and perfect the security cooperative mechanism and take consistent actions to strike on the "three evil forces."
The regional grouping founded in Shanghai on June 15, 2001 consists of China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. Mongolia, Iran, Pakistan and India are four observer states, and its dialog partners include Belarus and Sri Lanka.
The Chinese President said member-states should take the opportunity of revising the SCO regulations on political diplomatic measures and mechanisms of response to events jeopardizing regional peace, security and stability, to improve their capacity for organized action and quick responses to security risks.
Noting that internal affairs of countries in the region should be decided by their own people, Hu said the SCO was opposed to interference in the internal affairs of member-states under any excuse and firmly supported the efforts of member-states to safeguard their sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity, security and stability.
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad were among the leaders attending the two-day summit.
by RTT Staff Writer
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