The Xinhua News Agency published the full text of the Xi’an Declaration of the China-Central Asia Summit. Here we are producing its unofficial, slightly paraphrased translation:
May 18-19, 2023 President of the People’s Republic of China Xi Jinping, President of the Republic of Kazakhstan K.K.Tokaev, President of the Kyrgyz Republic S.N. Japarov, President of the Republic of Tajikistan E. Rahmon, President of Turkmenistan S.G. Berdimuhamedov and President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Sh.M. Mirziyoyev held the first Central Asia-China Summit in Xi’an.
The parties, in a warm atmosphere of friendship and mutual understanding, comprehensively summed up the results of friendly exchanges between the states of Central Asia and China, summarized the experience of multifaceted mutually beneficial cooperation, outlined guidelines for further interaction and stated the following:
1. The parties are unanimous that the development of fruitful multifaceted cooperation between the states of Central Asia and China meets the fundamental interests of all countries and their peoples. Against the backdrop of changes unprecedented in a century, the Parties, based on favorable prospects for the peoples of the region, reaffirm their desire to jointly create a closer community of a common destiny for Central Asia and China.
2. The Parties declare that within the framework of the current Summit, a mechanism for meetings of the heads of state of Central Asia and China is being officially created. The summit will be held every two years alternately in China on the one hand, and in one of the states of Central Asia in alphabetical order on the other hand. The parties expressed their readiness to fully implement the strategic leadership role of the diplomacy of the leaders of states, to strengthen comprehensive planning at the highest level for the development of relations between the states of Central Asia and China.
The Parties shall promote the formation of the “Central Asia-China” format, and as soon as possible create a mechanism for meetings at the ministerial level of key and priority areas of cooperation, fully engage the role of the foreign affairs agencies of each state, consider the possibility of establishing the “Central Asia-China” Secretariat in order to comprehensively promote cooperation between the Parties and the functioning of the relevant mechanisms.
3. The Parties reaffirm their support for the protection of each other’s fundamental interests in a spirit of mutual understanding. China firmly supports the development path of the Central Asian states, efforts to protect national independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity, as well as their independent foreign and domestic policies.
China supports the dynamic processes of regional cooperation in Central Asia, highly appreciates the mechanism of the Consultative Meetings of the Heads of State of Central Asia as a key factor in ensuring security, stability and sustainable development of the region, as well as the significant contribution of the Central Asian states to peace and development in the region and around the world .
The states of Central Asia highly appreciated the unique experience of the Communist Party of China in public administration, confirmed the great importance of the path of Chinese modernization for the development of the whole world. The sides reaffirmed their unwavering adherence to the One China principle.
4. The parties are unanimous that ensuring state security, political stability and constitutional order is of key importance, and resolutely oppose attempts to discredit legitimate state power and provoke “color revolutions”, as well as interference in the internal affairs of other countries in any of its forms and under any pretext.
The Parties emphasize that democracy is the common aspiration and value of humanity. The independent choice of the development path and management model concerns the sovereignty of each country and is not subject to intervention.
The parties noted the importance of contacts and relations between legislative bodies for promoting global cooperation in ensuring peace, security and stability.
5. The Parties highly appreciate the importance of the “One Belt, One Road” joint construction initiative for the development of international cooperation. Celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Initiative as a new starting point, the Parties express their readiness to strengthen its harmonization and alignment with the initiatives and national development strategies of the Central Asian states, including the New Economic Policy of the Republic of Kazakhstan “Nurly Zhol”, the National Development Program of the Kyrgyz Republic until 2026 d., the National Development Strategy of the Republic of Tajikistan for the period up to 2030, “Revival of the Great Silk Road” of Turkmenistan and the Development Strategy of New Uzbekistan for 2022-2026, to strengthen practical cooperation in various fields in order to form a new architectonics of cooperation, characterized by a high level of complementarity and mutual benefit.
6. The parties note the huge potential for trade and economic cooperation between the states of Central Asia and China, express their readiness to use the role of the Conference of Ministers of Economy and Trade “Central Asia – China”, comprehensively increase trade volumes, unlock the potential of the mechanism “Dialogue and cooperation in the field of electronic commerce,” as well as intensify interaction in new industries, including digital trade and the green economy.
The parties express their readiness to improve the quality and level of trade and economic cooperation, consistently promote mutual trade, promote the diversification of the structure of trade and constantly simplify trade procedures.
The parties emphasize the importance of developing a joint Strategy for the New Economic Dialogue “Central Asia – China”, which provides for the adoption of targeted measures to ensure unhindered trade and increase the volume of finished products from the countries of Central Asia to China, and the formation of a common space of industrial cooperation.
The parties expressed their readiness to promote the development of cooperation in the field of infrastructure construction and engineering construction, increase the interconnectedness of digital and green infrastructure, join forces for the sustainable development of cooperation in the field of infrastructure construction and engineering construction. The parties are ready to consider the possibility of creating a Data Bank of priority green investment projects.
The parties announced the establishment of the Central Asia-China Business Council and expressed their readiness to support trade promotion institutions, chambers of commerce and interested organizations in strengthening cooperation in the areas of trade and investment in order to make a greater contribution to the development of trade and economic cooperation between the states of Central Asia and China.
The parties intend to regularly hold the Forum of Industrial and Investment Cooperation “Central Asia – China”, continue to update agreements on cooperation in the field of investments between the states of Central Asia and China, encourage the expansion of industrial cooperation, increase the level of development in this area, ensure the stability and efficiency of production chains and supply chains, create shared value chains, promote greater stability, fairness, transparency and sustainability of its policy to attract foreign investment, create a more attractive and business investment climate under market conditions.
7. The parties agreed to gradually increase the number of flights and consider the possibility of developing and introducing measures to facilitate mutual business travel, including the issuance of a card for business travel “Central Asia – China”, as well as to intensify the modernization of the infrastructure of border points / checkpoints/, study the issue of opening new checkpoints, expand the practice of “express corridor” for the customs clearance of agricultural and food products at all border crossings, increase the interconnectedness of “single windows” in international trade, improve the business environment at checkpoints, promote cooperation on customs clearance facilitation, and actively develop logistics network in the region.
The parties emphasize the need to improve the status of Central Asia as one of the most important trans-Eurasian transport hubs, to intensify the development of the China-Central Asia transport corridor, the development of multimodal transit and transport in the directions China-Central Asia-South Asia, China-Central Asia-Middle East , China-Central Asia-Europe, including along the China-Kazakhstan-Turkmenistan-Iran route and trans-Caspian routes using the seaports of Aktau, Kuryk and Turkmenbashi, as well as the transit and transport capabilities of the city of Termez.
The parties will jointly develop transport infrastructure, including the construction of new and modernization of existing railways and roads from China to Central Asia.
The parties note the importance of completing the feasibility study of the China-Kyrgyzstan-Uzbekistan railway project and promoting the early launch of its construction, and also note the importance of the construction of the Kazakh-Chinese Ayaguz-Tacheng railway, ensuring the smooth operation of the China-Kyrgyzstan-Uzbekistan highway, and implementing regular work of the highway “China – Tajikistan – Uzbekistan” and the highway “Western China – Western Europe”.
The parties noted the importance of developing optimal opportunities for the transit of products from the countries of Central Asia to the markets of Southeast Asia and other Asian countries and vice versa.
The parties will take effective measures to increase cargo turnover, including measures to increase the volume of movement of goods at joint border checkpoints in order to form an all-inclusive, multimodal, multi-level, environmentally friendly and sustainable transport infrastructure system between China and the states of Central Asia.
8. The Parties express their readiness to use the potential of cooperation in the field of agriculture, including promoting the development of trade in crop and livestock products. The Chinese side is ready to expand the range of imports of agricultural products from Central Asian countries to the Chinese market.
The parties will intensify their efforts in the development of smart agriculture, the exchange of experience in the implementation of water-saving, green and other highly efficient technologies and best practices in this area.
The parties agreed to intensify the exchange of technologies and specialists in the amelioration of arid, saline and saline soils, water-saving irrigation, pest control, animal husbandry and veterinary medicine, and to strengthen the stress resistance of the agricultural sector with a view to its sustainable development.
The parties welcomed the initiative to hold the International Conference on Food Security in 2023 in Uzbekistan, and also noted the results of the International Conference “Cooperation for Food Security” in the context of climate change, held on March 9-10, 2023 in Ashgabat.
The Parties reaffirm the need for concerted efforts to ensure food security in a changing climate, and also note the importance of farming in the most environmentally friendly ways that support biodiversity, with the optimal use of water and land resources.
The parties note the importance of consolidating efforts to improve policies in the field of poverty reduction, increase employment and incomes of the population and create jobs. The parties expressed their readiness to intensify cooperation in this direction through the introduction of effective social support programs for the population, the exchange of specialists and modern methodologies.
9. The parties support the creation of partnerships “Central Asia – China” on energy development, building up cooperation along the entire production chain, further expanding cooperation in the field of traditional energy sources, including oil, natural gas and coal, strengthening cooperation in the field of hydropower, solar, wind energy and other renewable sources, deepening cooperation on the peaceful use of nuclear energy, implementing projects using green technologies and clean energy sources, implementing the concept of innovative, coordinated, green, open and joint development.
Noting the need for a stable energy supply for the development of trade and investment cooperation, the Parties welcome the acceleration of the construction of the fourth line of the Turkmenistan-China gas pipeline passing through the territory of the Central Asian states.
The parties noted cooperation in the energy sector as an important component of the sustainable development of the region.
The parties noted the initiative to develop a UN Strategy aimed at implementing measures for the development of low-carbon energy, as well as the development under the auspices of the UN of an international Roadmap for the development of hydrogen as one of the priority areas in the energy sector.
10. The parties confirm their readiness to strengthen cultural and humanitarian cooperation in such areas as education, science, culture, tourism, archaeology, archives, physical culture and sports, media and think tanks, promote interaction and establish twinning and partnerships between provinces and regions, expand the youth exchange mechanism through new forms of activities, develop cooperation in conducting joint archaeological expeditions, preserving and restoring cultural heritage, museum exchanges, searching for and returning lost and stolen cultural property.
The Chinese side invites the states of Central Asia to join the implementation of the Cultural Silk Road project in order to bring the people closer together.
The parties noted the importance of further cooperation in the field of tourism and the development of a joint tourist route “Central Asia – China”.
The parties are interested in deepening cooperation in the field of healthcare, and promoting the construction of centers of traditional Chinese medicine, including in the field of growing and processing medicinal plants to form the “Silk Road of Health”.
The Parties note the importance of expanding cooperation on biological safety issues and preventing the spread of dangerous infectious diseases. In this regard, the Parties express their support for the initiative to establish a special multilateral body under the auspices of the UN – the International Agency for Biological Safety.
Emphasizing the importance of developing cultural and humanitarian cooperation and strengthening mutual understanding between the people, the Parties welcomed the launch of the Year of Culture and Art of the Peoples of Central Asia and China and the Youth Festival of Arts “Central Asia – China”.
The Parties will support and promote academic and student exchanges, youth festivals, forums and sports competitions.
Stakeholders will actively promote the establishment of mutual cultural centers. The Chinese side is ready to continue the practice of allocating a quota for government scholarships to the Central Asian states, inviting specialized Central Asian specialists to China for training, advanced training courses and exchanges. The parties intend to promote the development of vocational education within the framework of the Lu Ban Workshops.
The parties encourage the expansion of cooperation in high-tech areas such as artificial intelligence, smart city, big data and cloud computing.
11. The parties reaffirmed their commitment to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Paris Agreement, which is the main platform and legal basis for the international community to apply joint efforts to combat climate change, stressed the need to comply with the goals, principles and institutional framework enshrined in the Convention and the Paris Agreement, in especially the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities, to promote the full and effective implementation of the Paris Agreement with an eye to the formation of an equitable, rational, joint and generally beneficial global climate management system.
The parties called for closer cooperation in the field of climate resilience and adaptation, emphasizing that the joint use of “green” solutions are designed to serve as effective measures to mitigate the negative effects of climate change.
The parties will strengthen the interaction of the relevant departments for emergency situations, deepen cooperation in the field of disaster prevention, mitigation and elimination of their consequences, industrial safety, search and rescue operations, as well as the exchange of seismic safety technologies.
The Chinese side welcomed the adoption of the Regional Green Agenda Program for Central Asia following the Consultative Meeting of the Heads of State of Central Asia, held on July 21, 2022 in Cholpon-Ata of the Kyrgyz Republic. The parties support interaction in the implementation of regional programs and projects in the field of “green” technologies.
The parties noted the importance of the adopted resolution “Expanding monitoring and research of mountain glaciers”, presented by the Kyrgyz Republic during the 41st General Conference of UNESCO in November 2021, and the resolution of the 76th session of the UN General Assembly on declaring 2022 the International Year of Sustainable Mountain Development, resolution the 77th session of the UN General Assembly “Sustainable Mountain Development”, which announced the Five Years of Action for the Development of Mountain Regions for 2023-2027, and also appreciated the contribution of the High-Level Meeting on Sustainable Mountain Development, held on September 19, 2022 in New York, in strengthening international cooperation on the mining agenda and its further implementation.
The parties noted the importance of the resolution of the UN General Assembly “2025 – International Year for the Protection of Glaciers”, presented by the Republic of Tajikistan, and also highly appreciated the holding of the UN Water Conference, which was held on March 22-24, 2023 in New York under the chairmanship of the Republic of Tajikistan and the Kingdom of the Netherlands.
The parties welcome the initiative to open a regional center for climate technologies for Central Asia under the auspices of the UN in Ashgabat, as a platform for the transfer of technologies for adaptation to climate change and mitigation of its consequences.
The parties noted the importance of a special resolution of the UN General Assembly adopted at the initiative of the Republic of Uzbekistan on declaring the Aral Sea region a zone of environmental innovations and technologies.
The parties noted the initiative to establish the UN Regional Center for Sustainable Development Goals for Central Asia and Afghanistan in Almaty.
12. The Parties believe that stability, development and prosperity in Central Asia meet the common interests of the peoples not only of the six countries, but of the whole world.
Strongly condemning terrorism, separatism and extremism in all their forms and manifestations, the Parties are ready to jointly fight the “three forces of evil”, drug trafficking, transnational organized crime and cybercrime, exchange experience in ensuring the security of key projects and mass events, as well as maintaining a safe and stable the functioning of joint projects of strategic importance, and jointly counteract security threats.
The parties took into account the holding of the High-Level International Conference on the topic “International and Regional Cooperation in the Field of Border Security and Control to Combat Terrorism and Prevent the Movement of Terrorists”, which was held on October 18-19, 2022 in Dushanbe, the Republic of Tajikistan.
The parties confirm the important role of inclusive dialogue in the development of interstate relations and emphasize the importance of Turkmenistan’s initiative to declare 2023 the “International Year of Dialogue as a Guarantee of Peace”, which is a way to mobilize the world community for activities to strengthen peace and confidence.
The parties welcomed the Samarkand Solidarity Initiative for Common Security and Prosperity, aimed at ensuring peace and stability, broad international cooperation and promoting the sustainable development of mankind.
The parties are ready, together with the international community, to continue to assist the people of Afghanistan in maintaining peace and stability, restoring social infrastructure, and integrating into the regional and world economic system.
The parties emphasize the importance of forming an inclusive government in Afghanistan with the participation of representatives of all ethnic and political groups of the Afghan society.
The parties noted the initiative to form an International Negotiating Group under the auspices of the UN.
The parties stand for and support the formation of Afghanistan as a peaceful, stable, prosperous country, free from terrorism, wars and drugs.
The parties note the need for joint efforts in the fight against illicit drug trafficking, including by considering the possibility of developing a Joint Anti-Drug Action Plan with the participation of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime.
13. The Parties believe that the issue of security and development is acute in today’s world. The states of Central Asia highly appreciate and are ready to actively cooperate within the framework of the Global Development Initiative, the Global Security Initiative, the Global Civilization Initiative put forward by China, noting their relevance for achieving the goals of the UN Agenda for Sustainable Development, ensuring peace and security in around the world and promote the progress of human civilization.
14. The Parties support the development of a peaceful, open, secure, shared and orderly cyberspace within the framework of the “Global Data Security Initiative”, emphasize the importance of jointly promoting the “Central Asia-China Digital Data Security Cooperation Initiative”, negotiations under the auspices of UN to develop a comprehensive international convention on combating the use of information and communication technologies for criminal purposes, joint efforts to address challenges and threats to international information security.
15. The parties reaffirm their commitment to strengthening the central role of the UN in ensuring international peace, security and sustainable development, spreading universal human values - peace, development, justice, equality, democracy and freedom, oppose attempts to politicize human rights issues.
The Parties reaffirm their commitment to the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, including the inviolability of the territorial integrity and sovereignty of states. The Parties express their determination to firmly defend multilateralism and universally recognized norms of international law and international relations, ensure international justice and equality, promote the world order and the system of global governance in line with fair and rational development.
The parties express their interest in intensifying dialogue and cooperation within the UN, SCO, CICA and other multilateral associations, prompt exchange of views and coordination of positions on topical regional and international issues.
The Parties recognize the important role of the IAEA in the peaceful use of atomic energy and note the right of each IAEA Member State to participate fully in all the Agency’s decision-making processes. In this regard, the Parties support the process of restoring sovereign equality in the IAEA, provided for by the Statute of the Agency, and the accession of the countries of Central Asia to the relevant regional groups of the IAEA.
The parties express their gratitude to the Chinese side for the high level of organization of the first Central Asia-China Summit.
The parties decided to hold the second Central Asia-China Summit in 2025 in the Republic of Kazakhstan. /// nCa, 20 May 2023 [Originally by Xinhua, May 19, 2023]