Abstract

Shanghai Cooperation Organization remains a pivot of opportunities and challenges for Pakistan. Earlier this year, SCO‟s Qingdao declaration reinforced the Shanghai Spirit of mutual respect, mutual cooperation, and peaceful settlement of disputes. Qingdao Summit reinforced SCO‟s emphasis on the reconfiguration of the geopolitical landscape and shift towards a multipolar world. Parallel with this, shared economic integration and security coordination among the SCO members enveloped the summit mood. All this encapsulates Islamabad‟s world view and strides on the diplomatic, political, economic, and strategic aspects at the bilateral, multilateral and international level. Pakistan has always stood for the „Peace within and Peace outside‟ based on principle of equality and multi-polarity at the regional and global level. In the pursuit of these goals Islamabad joined SCO initially as the observer state and later year was accorded permanent membership. SCO provides Islamabad multiple opportunities of the economic, diplomatic, political and strategic nature in line with its national, regional and global aspirations. The paper analyses the Islamabad‟s interaction pattern within the SCO in view of its stated goals and aspirations. The study explores the following fundamental queries: Why Pakistan joined SCO? What are the opportunities and challenges that Pakistan faces as an SCO permanent member?