Structure of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation

To implement the goals and objectives of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation Charter, the following bodies shall operate within the Organisation:

The Heads of State Council

The SCO Heads of State Council shall be the supreme SCO body. It shall determine priorities and define major areas of activities of the Organisation, decide upon the fundamental issues of its internal arrangement and functioning and its interaction with other States and international organisations, as well as consider the most topical international issues.

The Council shall hold its regular meetings once a year. A meeting of the Heads of State Council shall be chaired by the head of State organising this regular meeting. The venue of a regular meeting of the Council shall generally be determined in the Russian alphabetic order of names of the SCO member states.

The Heads of Government Council

The SCO Heads of Government Council shall approve the budget of the Organisation, consider and decide upon major issues related to particular, especially economic, spheres of interaction within the Organisation.

The Council shall hold its regular meetings once a year. A meeting of the Heads of State Council shall be chaired by the head of State organising this regular meeting. The venue of a regular meeting of the Council shall generally be determined in the Russian alphabetic order of names of the SCO member states.

The venue of a regular meeting of the Council shall be determined by prior agreement among heads of Government (Prime Ministers) of the member states.

The Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs

The Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs shall consider issues related to day-today activities of the Organisation, preparation of meetings of the Heads of State Council and holding of consultations on international problems within the Organisation. The Council may, as appropriate, make statements on behalf of SCO.

The Council shall generally meet one month prior to a meeting of the Heads of State Council. Extraordinary meetings of the Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs shall be convened on the initiative of at least two member states and upon consent of ministers of foreign affairs of all other member states. The venue of a regular or extraordinary meeting of the Council shall be determined by mutual agreement.

The Council shall be chaired by the minister of foreign affairs of the member state on whose territory the regular meeting of the Heads of State Council takes place, during the period starting from the date of the last ordinary meeting of the Heads of State Council to the date of the next ordinary meeting of the Heads of State Council.

The Chairman of the Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs shall represent the Organisation in its external contacts, in accordance with the Rules of Procedure of the Council.

Meetings of Heads of Ministries and/or Agencies

According to decisions of the Heads of State Council and the Heads of Government Council heads of branch ministries and/or agencies of the member states shall hold, on a regular basis, meetings for consideration of particular issues of interaction in respective fields within SCO.

A meeting shall be chaired by the head of a respective ministry and/or agency of the state organising the meeting. The venue and date of a meeting shall be agreed upon in advance.

For the preparation and holding meetings the member states may, upon prior agreement, establish permanent or ad hoc working groups of experts which carry out their activities in accordance with the regulations adopted by the meetings of heads of ministries and/or agencies. These groups shall consist of representatives of ministries and/or agencies of the member states.

The Council of National Coordinators

The Council of National Coordinators shall be a SCO body that coordinates and directs day-to-day activities of the Organisation. It shall make the necessary preparation for the meetings of the Heads of State Council, the Heads of Government Council and the Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs. National coordinators shall be appointed by each member state in accordance with its internal rules and procedures.

The Council shall hold its meetings at least three times a year. A meeting of the Council shall be chaired by the national coordinator of the member state on whose territory the regular meeting of the Heads of State Council takes place, from the date of the last ordinary meeting of the Heads of State Council to the date of the next ordinary meeting of the Heads of State Council.

The Chairman of the Council of National Coordinators may on the instruction of the Chairman of the Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs represent the Organisation in its external contacts, in accordance with the Rules of Procedure of the Council of National Coordinators.

Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure

The SCO Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure established by the member states of the Shanghai Convention to combat terrorism, separatism and extremism of 15 June, 2001, located in Bishkek, the Kyrgyz Republic, shall be a standing SCO body.

Its main objectives and functions, principles of its constitution and financing, as well as its rules of procedure shall be governed by a separate international treaty concluded by the member states, and other necessary instruments adopted by them.

The Executive Committee of the Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure (RATS) of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) is the permanent body of the SCO RATS based in Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan.

Its main tasks and duties are as follows:

1. Maintaining working relations with competent institutions of the member states and international organisations tackling issues of fighting terrorism, separatism and extremism;

2. Assistance in interaction among the member states in preparation and staging of counter-terrorism exercises at the request of concerned member states, preparation and conduct of search operations and other activities in the field of fighting terrorism, separatism and extremism;

3. Joint drafting of international legal documents concerning the fight against terrorism, separatism and extremism;

4. Gathering and analysis of information coming to the RATS from the member states, formation and filling of RATS data bank;

5. Joint formation of a system of effective response to global challenges and threats;

6. Preparation and holding of scientific conferences and workshops, assistance in sharing experience in the field of fighting terrorism, separatism and extremism.

Director is the chief administrative officer of the RATS Executive Committee. The nominee, a citizen of an SCO member state, is appointed by the Heads of State Council upon the recommendation of the RATS Council for a period of three years.

The Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure operates in accordance with the SCO Charter, the Shanghai Convention on Combating Terrorism, Separatism and Extremism, the Agreement among the SCO member states on the Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure, as well as documents and decisions adopted in the SCO framework.

On 1 January 2016, Yevgeny Sysoyev was appointed Director of the RATS Executive Committee.

SCO Secretariat

More information about the duties and operation of the SCO Secretariat can be found in the SCO Secretariat section.

The functions and working procedures for the SCO bodies, other than the Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure, shall be governed by appropriate provisions adopted by the Heads of State Council.

The Heads of State Council may decide to establish other SCO bodies. New bodies shall be established by the adoption of additional protocols to the SCO Charter which enter into force in the procedure, set forth in Article 21 of the SCO Charter.

Decisions-Taking Procedure

The SCO bodies shall take decisions by agreement without vote and their decisions shall be considered adopted if no member state has raised objections during the vote (consensus), except for the decisions on suspension of membership or expulsion from the Organisation that shall be taken by "consensus minus one vote of the member state concerned".

Any member state may expose its opinion on particular aspects and/or concrete issues of the decisions taken which shall not be an obstacle to taking the decision as a whole. This opinion shall be placed on record.

Should one or several member states be not interested in implementing particular cooperation projects of interest to other member states, non-participation of the abovesaid member states in these projects shall not prevent the implementation of such cooperation projects by the member states concerned and, at the same time, shall not prevent the said member states from joining such projects at a later stage.

Implementation of Decisions

The decisions taken by the SCO bodies shall be implemented by the member states in accordance with the procedures set out in their national legislation.

Control of the compliance with obligations of the member states to implement this Charter, other agreements and decisions adopted within SCO shall be exercised by the SCO bodies within their competence.

Non-governmental bodies

The SCO also includes two non-governmental bodies, the SCO Business Council and the SCO Interbank Consortium.

The Business Council of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation

The Business Council of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation was founded on June 14, 2006 in Shanghai. The founding session of the Business Council was attended by representatives of the Council's national branches from the Republic of Kazakhstan, the People's Republic of China, the Kyrgyz Republic, the Russian Federation, the Republic of Tajikistan and the Republic of Uzbekistan. During the session the parties signed the documents which regulate activities of the Council and its permanent body — the SCO BC Secretariat based in Moscow.

The Council was created in accordance with the decision of the SCO Heads of State Council. It is a non-governmental body which brings together the most influential members of the business communities of the six countries with the aim of boosting economic cooperation in the framework of the Organisation, establishing direct links and dialogue among business and financial circles of the SCO member states, assisting practical promotion of multilateral projects determined by the heads of government in the Programme of Trade and Economic Cooperation.

Annual Session is the highest body of the Business Council which sets priorities, formulates main targets for its activity, and decides on important issues concerning links with business associations from other states.

The SCO Business Council is an independent institution capable of taking advisory decisions and giving expert assessments on the involvement of members of the business communities of the SCO member states in trade, economic and investment interaction in the framework of the Organisation.

Another important feature of the Business Council is that alongside the priority areas of multilateral cooperation such as energy, transportation, telecommunications, credit and banking the Council pays special attention to interaction of the SCO member states in education, science, new technology, healthcare and agriculture.

Proceeding from the dynamism and interest of the business communities the BC closely cooperates with economic ministries and departments of governments and in no way duplicates their work.

During Shanghai Summit in June 2006 the heads of state underlined the significance of founding the Business Council for further development of the SCO and were confident that it would become an effective mechanism for the promotion of business partnership in the SCO region.

In 2006 special working groups in charge of cooperation in healthcare and education as well as interaction in creating SCO Energy Club were created.

Currently the special working group on healthcare is conducting selection of projects aimed to set up a structure in the SCO framework similar to the World Health Organisation (the working title is "SCO WHO") which would work in the interest of improving medical services in the SCO member states, developing disease-prevention capabilities, and satisfying the needs of population in high-tech medical treatments.

The Business Council puts special emphasis on the following projects aimed at providing help to population through:

— compulsory and voluntary medical insurance;

— elimination of the consequences of emergency situations (envisaging creation of a Joint Centre for Catastrophe Medicine);

— prevention of the spread of infectious diseases on the territory of the SCO member states (bird flu, SARS, tuberculosis);

— launch of a special high-tech project "Telemedicine" for population of remote and outlying regions of the member states;

— creation of a system of doctor's assistant and obstetrician aid posts;;

— creation of recreational facilities and spa resorts on the territory of SCO member states, primarily in Russia, Kazakhstan, China and Kyrgyzstan.

The Special Working Group on Education is considering the formation of a coordinating centre on the basis of existing national universities which will assist the efforts of higher education institutions in every SCO member state to open training and refresher courses for specialists in various economic sectors. The development of cooperation in this field will promote mutual understanding, social and cultural interaction, and further modernisation of science and education in the SCO member states.

In order to stimulate effective business relations within the SCO and achieve economic targets, on August 16, 2007, the SCO Business Council and the SCO Interbank Consortium signed a cooperation agreement.

The SCO Business Council activities are a component of the work done by the government bodies of the SCO member states on pursuing the List of Measures of Further Development of Project Activities within the SCO for the Period of 2012-2016, which outline the priorities for economic cooperation in the coming decade.

To achieve the set targets, throughout 2013 several events were held within the SCO Business Council. Thus, the national bodies and the Secretariat of the SCO Business Council organised six conferences on the prospects of developing relations on the territory of the SCO in the financial sector of the economy and on the introduction of high technology, investment, and transport and logistics areas. Five meetings, three round tables and three conferences were also held and synchronised with the major events held by the SCO Business Council in the aforementioned period.

The major direction of the business companies' cooperation involved projects in energy and IT, as well as in infrastructure and transport development in the SCO member states.

Contacts:

Sergey Kanavsky, Executive Secretary, SCO Business Council
http://www.bcsco.org/en
E-mail: bc-sco@mail.ru
Telephone: +7 (495) 621-56-08
Fax: +7 (495) 718-84-11

SCO Interbank Consortium

On 26 October 2005, the SCO Heads of Government Council took a decision to establish the SCO Interbank Consortium. The main goal of creating the SCO Interbank Consortium was setting up a mechanism of funding and banking services for investment projects supported by the governments of the SCO member states.

 

The priority areas of cooperation in the SCO IBC are as follows:

— To provide funding for the implementation of projects with emphasis on infrastructure building, basic branches, high technology, export-oriented economic sectors, projects of social significance;

— To grant and attract loans based on the generally accepted international banking practice;

— To arrange pre-export funding with the aim of stimulating trade economic links among the SCO member states;

— To share information on potential clients and cooperation projects in accordance with the Agreement on the condition of observing the necessary confidentiality;

— To train personnel, organise delegation exchange and internship, conduct business seminars;

— Other areas of common interest.

The SCO IBC member banks constitute the Council comprised of one representative from each party (as a rule, in the capacity of chief executive officer from each party).

The Council meets ad hoc upon consensus of all parties, at least once a year.

The scope of competence of the SCO IBC Council includes:

— Coordination of the parties' current activity in accordance with the Agreement;

— Determining new potential projects;

— Considering the process of project implementation;

— Approving the Annual Report on the IBC activity to be forwarded to SCO Secretary-General for its further submission to the SCO decision-making bodies;

— Interacting with other financial and banking institutions.

Presidency of the Council is carried out on a rotational basis.