SCO youths urged to play a bigger role in innovation

Youth representatives from 12 member and observer countries of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization visit the Qingdao International Convention Center in Qingdao, Shandong province, on July 16, 2018. The youths were participating in the ongoing SCO Youth Campus. (LI ZIHENG / XINHUA)

Greater effort should be made to further promote youth exchanges among Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) members to prepare them to play a bigger role in technological innovation and regional development, officials said on Thursday.

The officials made the remarks at the opening ceremony of SCO Youth Technology and Innovation Forum held in Shenzhen from Tuesday to Thursday this week.

The officials made the remarks at the opening ceremony of SCO Youth Technology and Innovation Forum held in Shenzhen from Tuesday to Thursday this week

Youth exchanges and technological innovation have always been priorities of cooperation for the SCO, Shen Yueyue, vice chairperson of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress and chairperson of the Good-Neighborliness, Friendship and Cooperation Commission of the SCO, said.

SCO members attach great importance to technological innovation and are actively formulating strategies and implementing measures to promote its development, she added.

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The world is entering a new era of technological and industrial transformation, with a number of advanced technologies being developed, including those in the information, manufacturing and energy sectors, Shen noted.

“Youths across SCO members need to have the aspiration, courage and spirit to become pioneers”, she said, calling on them to grasp the opportunities and make concerted efforts to achieve more breakthroughs in science and technology.

It is also important for youths to adhere to openness and inclusiveness to create a sound environment for technological innovation, she added.

Zhang Ming, secretary general of SCO, said there are over 700 million youths in SCO members. Comprehensively promoting their physical and mental development, enhancing their personal qualities, and enabling them to participate in a variety of SCO activities will be important for the further development of SCO members, he said.

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He added that SCO needs to nurture youths who have an innovative mindset, and who possess the strong knowledge and spirit of hard work to be able to shoulder the responsibility of continuing the success of SCO and maintaining peaceful and stable development and prosperity of the region.

Wang Hongyan, president of All-China Youth Federation, said a growing number of young people among SCO members are becoming a driving force behind the latest technological and industrial developments.

The federation has organized a number of activities to promote youth exchanges and entrepreneurship among SCO members. More than 1,200 youths within the organization have come to China on exchanges over the past 10 years, Wang said.

 The forum, themed “Youth Building Dreams of Technology, Innovation Leading the Future”, aims to promote youth exchanges across the world in the areas of innovation cooperation, innovation education, talent training, agricultural development, rural poverty reduction, international health cooperation, information infrastructure construction and sustainable development.

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The event also included several parallel forums as well as a bike riding activity. Around 30 youths from different countries joined the bike ride, during which they visited landmarks of the country’s reform and opening up and headquarters of internet giant Tencent.