On 22 August 2020, SCO Secretary-General Vladimir Norov visited Qingdao to attend the China Wealth Forum on the theme Wealth Management Trends under Global Huge Changes.
The welcoming remarks at the opening ceremony were made by Secretary of the Qingdao CPC Committee Wang Qingxian, Vice President of the People's Bank of China Fan Yifei, Chairman of the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission Zhu Shumin, Vice Chairman of the China Securities Regulatory Commission Fang Xinghai, Vice President of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences Cai Fang and President of the China Everbright Bank Liu Jin.
The SCO Secretary-General noted in his remarks that the SCO region embraced almost a half of the world population. This is a huge market for joint innovation projects in the field of IT and digital economy. Accordingly, the 2019 SCO Summit in Bishkek endorsed the Concept for Cooperation in Digitalisation and Information and Communications Technologies.
To expand border trade between SCO countries, Mr Norov suggested the creation of an SCO e-platform based on the Qingdao Demonstration Zone for regional trade and economic cooperation, with digital economy companies as its members.
A special plenary meeting on the theme Construction of the China-SCO Demonstration Zone for Economic and Trade Cooperation and Innovation was held as part of the forum, where the SCO Secretary-General unveiled his programmatic remarks.
Themed reports were also delivered by Senior Research Fellow of the China Centre for International Economic Exchanges Zhang Yansheng, Deputy Director of the Managing Committee of the China-SCO Demonstration Zone Hao Guoxin, former Deputy Director of the Department of Eurasian Affairs at the PRC Ministry of Commerce Zhang Di, Secretary-General at the China Centre for SCO Studies Deng Hao, Chuanhua Zhilian Vice President Xu Yan, chief economist of the Astana International Financial Centre Baurzhan Bektemirov (Kazakhstan), and Executive Secretary of the SCO Business Council Sergei Kanavsky.
SCO Secretary-General Norov noted during his remarks that it was in Qingdao that PRC President Xi Jinping's initiative to create a new collaboration venue, the China-SCO Demonstration Zone for Regional Economic and Trade Cooperation and Innovation, aimed at expanding mutual trade and investment between SCO member states, was implemented.
The Demonstration Zone includes a regional logistics centre, a modern trade centre, a centre for production capacities cooperation, a bilateral investment centre, and a centre for business, tourism and culture exchanges.
The Eight Wonders of the SCO cultural and tourist project is being implemented within the Demonstration Zone, as is Premier of the State Council Li Keqiang's idea to create the SCO Technology Transfer Centre.
"Apart from this, country collaboration at the China-SCO Demonstration Zone in Qingdao is opening broad opportunities, particularly for the SCO's Central Asian countries, the nucleus of the Organisation, in gaining a direct outlet to seaports, which is a strategic target for them, and in making the region a major crossroads for East-West and North-South transcontinental roads," Mr Norov said.
During his visit to Qingdao, the SCO Secretary-General had meetings with Secretary of the Qingdao CPC Committee Wang Qingxian, Vice Mayor Geng Tao, Director of the Management Committee of the China-SCO Demonstration Zone Liu Jianjun, Secretary of the CPC Committee of the Shibei District Zhang Xinzhu, and Shandong Port Group President Li Fengli. The sides exchanged views on the implementation of trade and economic cooperation projects, the establishment of the Technology Transfer Centre, and the construction of the China-SCO Demonstration Zone.
The China Wealth Forum has been held annually since 2015. It is positioned as an international financial dialogue venue dedicated to global economic trends and intended to facilitate the healthy development of China's capital management industry and to manage the real economy. It is also a platform for debates between the political establishment, businesses and aсademia.
The event was organised by the People's Government of the City of Qingdao and held by the Caijing and Caijing Think Tank analytical centres.