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Growing Trend of Negative Coverage of CPEC in Media       By Sajjad Shaukat

Growing Trend of Negative Coverage of CPEC in Media

By Sajjad Shaukat

 

In the cyber-age, online information and interaction of peoples by the developed and the less developed countries have further increased the importance of media. Media tools which include TV channels, newspapers and websites have the power to mold peoples’ views in a positive or negative sense.

 

In this respect, terror-attacks in Pakistan’s various regions, especially in the Balochistan province and other anti-Pakistan developments cannot be seen in isolation, as these are part of the conspiracy to damage the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

 

While, Pakistan’s Armed Forces have successfully broken the backbone of the foreign-backed terrorists by the military operations Zarb-e-Azb and Radd-ul-Fasaad which have also been extended to other parts of the country, including Balochistan. Country’s primary intelligence agency ISI has broken the network of these terrorist groups by capturing several militants while thwarting a number of terror attempts. Peace has been restored in various regions of Pakistan, including Balochistan and Karachi.

 

But, recent blasts in Balochistan and other areas of the country show that the US-led India, Afghanistan, and Israel have again started subversive acts to weaken Pakistan and to harm the CPEC. Well-entrenched in Afghanistan, intelligence agencies such as American CIA, Indian RAW and Israeli Mossad which are in collaboration with the Afghan intelligence agency, National Directorate of Security (NDS) are using various terrorist outfits like Daesh and Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), including their affiliated terrorist groups in order to conduct terrorist acts in Pakistan. As part of the double game, these secret agencies also support Baloch separatist elements to promote the covert agenda of the US-led entities against China and Pakistan.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It is noteworthy that on March 24, 2016, Pakistan’s security forces disclosed that they arrested the serving agent of RAW in Balochistan. During investigation and in a video, shown on Pakistan’s TV channels, RAW agent Kulbushan Yadav confessed that “he was the agent of RAW” and “during his stay, he contacted various Baloch separatist leaders and insurgents, including Dr Allah Nazar Baloch, to execute the task to damage the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor” project.

 

It is notable that India was openly opposing the CPEC and China’s One Belt, One Road (OBOR) initiative, the US also joined New Delhi. In this context, on October 3, 2017, US Defence Secretary James Mattis told the Lawmakers, “The United States has reiterated its support for India’s opposition to China’s One Belt, One Road initiative…the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) a part of which traverses Pakistan-Kashmir.”

 

Islamabad strongly dismissed the statement from the American defence chief that the multibillion-dollar road and rail network CPEC which is part of China’s ‘One Belt, One Road’ initiative, passes through a disputed territory of Kashmir, urging the international community to focus on blatant human rights violations and ‘heinous crimes’ committed by Indian occupation forces in the Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK), and reminded the US that Washington had also participated in an OBOR summit.

 

Earlier, a statement from the Chinese foreign ministry also dismissed Mattis’ statement, saying that the OBOR plan was backed by the United Nations and that CPEC was an economic cooperation initiative.

 

In this regard, repeated threats of the US President Donald Trump and top American officials to Islamabad and other moves like suspension of latter’s aid are part of the same scheme to thwart the CPEC.

 

However, terror-attacks to destabilize Pakistan coincide with a continued propaganda campaign, launched by the foreign media against Pakistan, while, giving negative coverage to the CPEC.

 

In fact, Indian lobbies which are well-penetrated in the US administration and Europe, research centers, think tanks and so-called human rights groups utilize the media tools in defaming Pakistan internationally. Especially, RAW is availing the opportunity of the US-led organized propaganda campaign against Pakistan.

 

In this connection, much coverage was given by the external media to a report, released on April 13, 2017, by Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization (UNPO) which is in partnership with Mahatma Gandhi International AISBL. The subject report portrayed complete Indian negative propaganda themes about the provinces of Gilgit-Baltistan (GB), Balochistan and Sindh. Based on falsehood, the report also said that the CPEC is a breach of international law and is being implemented without consultation or compensation to the people of the area.

 

Undoubtedly, GB is the gateway of CPEC into Pakistan, whereby GB’s strategic and socio-economic importance has increased manifold. Like Balochistan, the region has huge potential in the trade with China, tourism, minerals, gems, precious stones, agriculture-farming and hydropower production. Therefore, GB’s people who are strengthening their association with Pakistan pays no attention to the false propaganda.

 

In this context, a blog under the caption, “Why Pakistan and China must pay heed to the growing local resistance to CPEC—Communities that are being displaced by the project are anxious–and angry” appeared on a website on July 18, 2017, written by Dr. Amiera and Dr. Nausheen H. Anwar. The blog was also republished by the Asia Times (Online) on August 8, 2017. As part of the negative coverage of the CPEC, it was reproduced several times under various titles like “CPEC: The growing resentment and resistance among poor Pakistanis can cost China dearly”, “For Pakistan, China’s huge energy investments may have serious political costs” etc.

 

Nevertheless, the blog left no stone unturned in making the CPEC controversial. It wrote: “In Pakistan, there’s no topic hotter than the China Pakistan Economic Corridor, a multi-billion dollar bilateral development project…its focus on energy development is also desperately needed in a country…At least, that’s the theory. Not everyone sees the changes wrought by the CPEC so positively…with those being impacted by CPEC-funded energy projects, growing citizen mobilization in Sindh and Punjab may be turning into a political problem for Pakistan…while CPEC projects are already benefiting the national economy, the boon is less assured for those living in the project regions…Many of the residents in CPEC target areas are homesteaders, pastoralists, and small business owners…the farmer told us about ongoing resistance to a planned CPEC project that the government had thus far failed to heed. At this point, he said, they should expect violent opposition…Many Pakistanis…both in Punjab and Sindh perceive CPEC development as just another form of oppression.”

 

Anyhow, this blog indicates to how propaganda techniques are being employed by the foreign media to target the CPEC.

 

While, these external media-propagandists who also give undue coverage to the meetings and protests against the integrity of Pakistan, are particularly exaggerating the statements of those Baloch leaders who have taken shelter abroad and are fulfilling the agenda of their foreign masters against the CPEC.

 

In this respect, RAW and CIA arranged a meeting of Baloch Sub-Nationalists, SSNs (Sindhi-Sub- Nationalists) and the USNs (Uyghur Sub-Nationalists of China) on the termination of 35th Session of Human Rights Council in Geneva from 12-14 June 2017. The agenda was; planning against the CPEC/Pak-China’s interests in the region. Mehran Marri attended the conference and delivered a speech (reportedly prepared by RAW) alleging CPEC as exploitation projects and Baloch cultural genocide by Pakistan and China. Representatives of World Sindh Congress (WSC), Uyghur human rights activists, Rebiya Kadeer and Dolikun Aeysa were also present in the said conference.

 

As a matter of fact, since April 20, 2015, when the Chinese President Xi Jinping and Pakistan’s former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif signed 51 agreements for cooperation in various fields, related to the CPEC, gloomy coverage of the project had already started in the external media.

 

But, it is regrettable that by following the pessimistic approach of the external media, in the recent past, some media anchors and the so-called analysts of Pakistan have also given negative coverage to the CPEC by manipulating the differences of the provincial and regional politicians. Thus, intentional or intentionally, they have encouraged the designs of the foreign entities.

 

Notably, Pakistan’s former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had led a high-level delegation to China and met Chinese President Xi Jinping and his counterpart Li Keqiang on May 13, 2017. On the same day, Beijing and Islamabad signed three agreements pertaining to the economic and technical cooperation of worth 3.4 billion Yuan for Gwadar port and East Bay expressway. In the meeting with the Chinese president, P.M. Sharif stated that the presence of all the chief ministers [of Pakistan’s provinces] shows the importance our nation gives to Pak-China ties. He added, “China is our strategic partner…The benefits of the Chinese investment of $56 billion with regards to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) will soon reach the common man in Pakistan.” Chinese rulers also expressed similar feelings.

 

The reality is that the establishment of CPEC between deep Gwadar seaport of Balochistan and the historic Silk Road city in western regions-Xinjiang of China will connect Gilgit-Baltistan through Khunjerab Pass. Beijing would also build an international airport at Gwadar, while the roads infrastructure in Gwadar would link the communication network of rest of the country to facilitate transportation of goods.

 

When Gwadar seaport becomes fully operational, it would connect the landlocked Central Asian states with rest of the world. Being the commercial hub, the port is likely to increase the volume of trade, bringing multiple economic and financial benefits to Pakistan like the Suez Canal which changed the destiny of Egypt when Israel returned it to the former. It will enable high-volume cargo vessels to move in the major oceans. Gwadar project which is the backbone of the CPEC will uplift the impoverished people of Balochistan and Gilgit-Baltistan, including developments in other provinces by providing thousands of employment opportunities, especially to the less developed areas by redressing their grievances. The resulting prosperity in Balochistan and Gilgit-Baltistan would damp the separatist sentiments of the people, which the hostile elements, supported by the US, India and Israeli do not want. Therefore, their media describe the CPEC in negative terms.

 

Nonetheless, instead of following the growing trend of negative coverage of the CPEC in foreign media, Pakistan’s media should give a matching response to the malicious propaganda of the US-led India, Israel and some western countries against this Pak-China project.

Sajjad Shaukat writes on international affairs and is author of the book: US vs Islamic Militants, Invisible Balance of Power: Dangerous Shift in International Relations

Email: sajjad_logic_pak@hotmail.com

 

 

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Strategic Dimensions:  Indian Wheat is Harmful to Afghans’ Health By Sajjad Shaukat

Strategic Dimensions: 

Indian Wheat is Harmful to Afghans’ Health

 

By Sajjad Shaukat

 

After hosting the US Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, India on October 29, 2017, began shipment of 15000 tons wheat to landlocked Afghanistan through Iran’s Chabahar port, which was received in the Afghan city of Zaranj with jubilation. The consignment was the first out of the 1.1 million tons wheat committed by India for the people of Afghanistan on a grant basis and was projected in the media mainly to celebrate the launching of the newly constructed Chabahar port. India, Afghanistan and Iran agreed to operationalize the Chabahar port only a year-and-a-half ago when they signed agreements in relation to the US-backed Chabahar project to develop a trade route from Chabahar to Central Asia. The project has been portrayed by Indian media commentators as having changed the historical Great Game for control of the connections between South and Central Asia through Afghanistan.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Afghan officials said that the rest of the consignments were expected to arrive in different stages, and were set to be completed by the end of January 2017.

It is notable that a huge quantity of wheat being supplied to Afghanistan in the name of a grant was from the old stock and is infected. Hence, it is harmful to the health of the Afghans. Due to administrative mismanagement and red-tapism in India, a large number of wheat stocks got unnoticed for years and ultimately expired.

The Indian government’s recent move of demonetization of currency notes in the country also added to further infect these already expired stocks of wheat, as the Indian farmers did not have new currency notes to purchase seeds which were earlier being provided to them from these old stocks and they ultimately used the fresh yields as seeds.

 

In this respect, Pakistan’s leading businessmen and Director Zia-ul- Haq Sarhadi in a statement issued by the Pak-Afghan Joint Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PAJCCI) said in December, last year that they have once again appealed to the Pakistan and Afghan authorities to review the bilateral trade policies including transit trade to promote bilateral trade between two countries—the new Afghan Transit Trade Agreement (APTTA) has become the victim of sabotage since last six years. The result was that 70% Afghan trade has been shifted to Iranian ports of Bandar Abbas and Chabahar—due to lack of clear export policy, India has started shifting her wheat to Afghanistan and Central Asian Republics (CARs) through Chabahar port of Iran—Pakistan had exported 1 to 1.5 million ton of wheat, flour and self-rising flour (Maida) annually to Afghanistan.

 

However, rather than being purely a commercial activity, Indian supply of wheat to Afghanistan cannot be seen in isolation, it has strategic dimensions.

 

In this regard, the hastily-launching of the project of Chabahar port came to a head in wake of Pakistan’s Gwadar port of the Balochistan province, becoming a focus of global attention owing to the junction of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor project (CPEC). Therefore, in order to fulfil its so-called strategic agenda with maximum projection, New Delhi provided the wheat from its expired stocks. But, with a softer Indian image, New Delhi ignored the health of millions of Afghanis who would be using this wheat as their basic food. The issue can have serious implications for the lives of Afghanis who have already been suffering from food and health crisis since long due to continuous crisis and displacements. Notably, the issue has already been discussed in various talk shows in the Kabul News TV by Anchor Wahidullah and Ghazikhel and on Shamshad TV.

 

It is mentionable that as part of the animosity against Pakistan, the Indian government was exerting pressure on the businessmen and industrialists to hasten the move and subsidized Indian wheat which would drive Islamabad out of the Afghan markets. Besides, New Delhi gave general subsidy on farm inputs, which makes the Indian wheat cheaper as compared to Pakistan, while, India also offered a specific $50 per ton additional subsidy to exporters, thus driving the price further down.

 

It is noteworthy that Afghanistan which is in the phase of transition, moving from crisis to stability, has expressed a strong desire to join the multi-billion economic opportunity of the CEPEC, when in October 2016, Afghan Ambassador to Pakistan, Dr Omar Zakhilwal, emphasized upon his country’s interest in joining the CPEC. However, a year later, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani’s disappointing statement regarding Kabul’s joining of the Indian venture Chabahar Port, gave a setback to the earlier progressive and pragmatic approach of the Afghan nation.

 

While, as a landlocked, terrorism and militancy prone nation, Afghanistan is in desperate need of infrastructural development and uplifting its economy. Thus, if Kabul joins the CPEC, an ideal environment of trilateral cooperation can be developed in the region which can benefit all parties involved.

 

Besides, Afghanistan can, particularly, gain enormously by not only benefiting from this Chinese investment but also can have an active role of both Beijing and its strategic partner Islamabad in bringing stability and peace in Afghanistan.

 

When Gwadar seaport becomes fully operational, it would connect the landlocked Central Asian states with rest of the world. Being the commercial hub, the port is likely to increase the volume of trade, bringing multiple economic and financial benefits to Pakistan and China. It will enable high-volume cargo vessels to move in the major oceans by giving easy access to the Persian Gulf and the Indian Ocean.

 

In this context, CPEC is predicted to bring industrialization and investment to Pakistan, the carry-over effects of which will obviously benefit neighbouring Afghanistan also. Unlike the Chabahar project, the CPEC is the wider project, between deep Gwadar seaport of Balochistan and the historic Silk Road city in western regions-Xinjiang of China. Beijing would also build an international airport at Gwadar, while the roads infrastructure in Gwadar would link the communication network of rest of the country to facilitate transportation of goods. The connected roads will enable Afghan businessmen and investors to access the enormous consumer markets in South Asia, thereby increasing Afghanistan’s exports and reducing the costs of imports. CPEC can bring the three nations under a common economic, commercial and industrial umbrella which, in turn, can ensure joint efforts for peace, security and stability in Afghanistan.

 

The Afghan nation must also take cognizance of the fact that Kabul is 1237 km. away from Gwadar, whereas the distance between Kabul and Chabahar is 1840 km. It means Gwadar is more suitable for Kabul, because, it is more than 600 km. nearer to it as compared to Chabahar. Gwadar is much more a beneficial route for the Afghanis with suitable logistic expenses.

American CIA, Indian RAW and Israeli Mossad

Undoubtedly, CPEC is likely to prove as the game-changers in the region, therefore, based in Afghanistan, intelligence agencies such as American CIA, Indian RAW and Israeli Mossad are assisting terror-outfits so as to destabilize various regions of Pakistan, especially Pakistan’s Balochistan and Iranian Sistan-Baluchistan.

 

Notably, on June 13, 2016, a Chinese newspaper, Global Times also wrote that India is “damaging the prospects of Gwadar by investing in Chabahar to isolate Pakistan; however, it will not succeed in its designs.” The paper explained, “Pakistan’s Sindh Province saw a bomb attack against Chinese engineers…Meanwhile, the Pakistani government claimed that anti-CPEC activities by foreign forces have been busted in Baluch Province. At the Beijing Forum held in Islamabad in late May, countries including the US and Japan have shown concerns over CPEC construction and even bluntly criticized the China-Pakistan friendship. CPEC is a significant part of the Belt and Road initiative, which is not only a domestic strategy of China to open up its central and western regions, but also Pakistan’s domestic development plan as well as regional integration.”

Another strategic dimension is that India was openly opposing the CPEC and China’s One Belt, One Road (OBOR) initiative, the US also joined India in this respect.

 

As part of the double game, on October 3, 2017, US Defence Secretary James Mattis told the Lawmakers, “The United States has reiterated its support for India’s opposition to China’s One Belt, One Road initiative” the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.” And the recent threat of American President Donald Trump to Islamabad, suspension of aid and encouragement of Indian role in Afghanistan are part of the covert strategic game to damage the CEPEC project. Hence, Pakistan which has already established its strategic partnership with Beijing is also cultivating a strong relationship with Russia and Iran. Thus, an alliance of Russia, China, Pakistan and Iran is likely to emerge in the near future in response to the US-Indian partnership.

 

Afghan rulers must also note that pro-Israeli President Trump is against Tehran. In this connection, addressing a regional summit in Riyadh, Suadi Arabia on May 22, 2017, President Trump accused Iran of supporting terrorism from Lebanon to Iraq and to Yemen—contributing to instability in the region. Moreover, in pursuance of Israeli hidden agenda, President Trump has also refused to certify the US-Iran nuclear deal. In these circumstances, Iran could abandon the Chabahar project and could also join the CPEC.

 

Sajjad Shaukat writes on international affairs and is author of the book: US vs Islamic Militants, Invisible Balance of Power: Dangerous Shift in International Relations

 

Email: sajjad_logic_pak@hotmail.com

 

 

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Jeopardize OBOR by Asad Khan Betini

Jeopardize OBOR

Asad Khan Betini

 

China’s one belt one road (OBOR) is changing the world order since it is leading China to influence the western European market. Chinese liberal policy in terms of trade is being viewed as a windfall while CPEC being part of it is the foundation milestone of the project. China is Pakistan’s time-tested friend and has always backed Pakistan economically and logistically despite Islamabad’s cuddling with Washington. Sino-Pak friendship is a firm knot which can’t be unlocked but yet it seems that conspiracies have amplified to imbalance Sino-Pak relations and may endanger the grant. India has recently put proposals before China to reconsider Bangladesh, China, India, and Myanmar (BCIM) as an alternate corridor. India has also resorted to developing Chabahar and Abbass ports to improve trade with Iran and Afghanistan. India’s participation in developing Iran’s Chabahar port with an investment of $85.21 million is being viewed as dominant role in South Asia. Dehli’s investment in Chabahar port will definitely permit India to access & control the Strait of Hormuz that will even provide Israel an access to the Strait of Hormuz for the reason that India is Israel’s time-test friend.  

 

 

 

 

 

On the other hand, India has raised concerns over growing militant hideouts in Pakistan, India is also proposing China to unleash Pakistan’s secret support to militants that are threatening the regional security and stability, even BRICS summit was predisposed by India to speak on Islamabad’s role on terrorism that brought China to play part for Indian bogey.

Accordingly, India has made reservations that East Turkistan Islamic Party (ECIP) is becoming threat to Chinese projects in deep state with sanctuaries in Tribal areas of Pakistan, but all these claims are yet unacceptable to China since Indo-US and Israel’s nexus is getting stronger and India has been identified as the largest recipient of U.S economic assistance.US may endanger the track of China’s One Belt One Road (OBOR) once India gains its access and control Chabahar port.

India aspired to play a more dominant role in South Asia and it is openly believed that India intensified its attacks through proxy militants in Pakistani resource-rich province “Balochistan” and yet engaged in destruction activities, target killings, bomb blasts in Balochistan but security apparatus in Baluchistan has failed to counter terrorism. 

 

 

 

 

 

This is not a portent anymore rather a fact, Kulbhoshan Jadhav has claimed all responsibilities for the operations carried out in Pakistani mineral-rich province yet Indo-US plans are to reinvigorate Free Balochistan Movement through fundraising campaigns abroad which are deeply seen as a threat to the existence of Pakistan. It may knock Pakistan’s nuclear doctrine to save its self from foreign aggression, China strongly backs Pakistan in a bid to protect its OBOR’s objectives.

Indo-Us fulcrum is seen as a threat by China since the US is concerned with Chinese liberal influence in the Western Europe. China is softly influencing the international market, particularly developing countries are now getting loans from Chinese International Investment bank (CIIB) rather than World Bank or IMF.

The world order is slowly spinning and CPEC is becoming game changer project in the region. Pakistan needs to promote its education sector, enhance security apparatus and ensure development, friendship, and peace with the neighboring countries for the long term to make it more successful. Pakistan needs to promote Islamic coalition bloc and must arbitrate between Saudi and Iran for détente, even Chinese foreign direct investments can fulfill the needs of Iran, Afghanistan, and Pakistan, so Pakistan must step forward to integrate Muslim brotherhood.

The Writer is Balochistan Based Freelance Journalist – He can be reached at asdprg@gmail.com

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CPEC and Gwadar by By Zahra Niazi THE EXPRESS TRIBUNE

THE EXPRESS TRIBUNE

 OPINION

CPEC and Gwadar

By Zahra Niazi

Published: August 11, 2017

The writer is a freelance columnist

The writer is a freelance columnist

The city of Gwadar that we proudly own today did not belong to us. Our government bought it from the Sultanate of Oman in 1958. Only if Oman had known the fate of this land earlier, it probably would have never sold it to Pakistan. Now, Pakistan gladly reaps the reward while Oman silently observes.

It wouldn’t be unfair to credit Worth Condrick, the man who carried out a survey of the area and realised the worth of the land of Gwadar when Oman had known little about its value and was ready to get rid of it since Oman and Gwadar were geographically detached. Neither was it profitable to them. Additionally, the inhabitants of Gwadar were willing to join Pakistan.

A somewhat riveting fact is that Pakistan wasn’t the only country to which this land was offered. It was originally offered to India. It was India’s hard luck that it refused and Pakistan’s fortune that Gwadar was geographically contiguous to it. Today, the consequences are much harsher for India. Their angst is quite clear from the recent terrorist activities being carried out in Balochistan in order to undermine the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor. It was a few months ago that an Indian submarine was found lurking in the waters around the port. RAW networks are also active in Karachi and along the western border. The deep sea port of Gwadar can prove to be a major security threat for India that may scale down its influence in the Indian Ocean.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Alfred Thayer Mahan was a geo-political strategist. Today, Chinese maritime strategy is based upon Mahan’s theory of sea dominance. He foresaw the superiority of the Indian Ocean. He was of the view that the one who controls the Indian Ocean could become dominant in the whole of Asia. According to him, securing the sea lines of communication can prove beneficial for countries in order to impose a blockade against others.

India is fearful that China’s People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLA) and the Pakistan Navy (PN) together could diminish its dominance in the Indian Ocean. The PLA Navy would become permanent in the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman. In case of a war, both the allies can easily impose a naval blockade against India and thereby hinder its trade. Competing against allies wouldn’t be plain sailing for India. They would keep an eye on India’s activities in the Indian Ocean particularly the Arabian Sea. China would also be able to secure its sea lines of communication. The capability of the PLA Navy as well as the PN would grow. China sees this as an opportunity to turn the port into its naval base.

China would have never invested this laboriously in Pakistan if Gwadar wasn’t bought. Giving and receiving is a fundamental law. According to this, you need to give something in order to receive something. China’s string of pearls strategy, initially coined by US analysts, includes setting up a number of military and naval areas of influence across a widespread region. Each of the area would be a pearl and one of those pearls is the deep sea port of Gwadar. China wants to diversify the trade routes and find an alternative to the Strait of Malacca and the South China Sea. The Strait of Malacca is under the watchful eyes of the US and Indian naval forces. In case of any major conflict, this strait could be halted and this would affect the Chinese economy. Additionally, the strait is also surrounded by the Andaman and Nicobar Islands owned by India. Hence, the trade route through Gwadar port is fairly economical for China.

Balochistan, a resource rich region, hasn’t been able to contribute enough to the economy of Pakistan since the beginning of the creation of the country. Now, Gwadar is going to materialise our dream of sustainable prosperity for Pakistan by turning from a fishing village into a port city. Gwadar is expected to generate massive revenue. Along with this, different industrial estates could be established in the adjacent areas. Not only people from other provinces but foreigners would also be tempted to invest here if the security situation is duly maintained. Gwadar is expected to generate almost two million jobs for the people of Balochistan. The trade capacity of Gwadar port is more than that of Port Qasim and Karachi port combined.

In order to reap maximum benefits, skilled labour is a major need otherwise the job opportunities could easily be exploited by the Chinese and all the money Beijing is investing will benefit them with interest. After all, the port has been leased to a Chinese company for a period of 40 years. Along with this, the dependence on the Chinese expertise for maintenance should be reduced. Pakistan should increase its economic activities and exports. Hambantota port is the finest example where Sri Lanka was trapped in a debt and the port had to be leased to China for a period of 99 years. All the essential steps should be taken before it’s too late.

Furthermore, maritime crimes should be controlled. Crimes like illegal entry and carrying of weapons, smuggling, drug and human trafficking are frequent, and therefore need special attention. Another noteworthy issue is that of marine pollution. In order to tackle these issues, there should be strict rules and regulations for all the moving ships and efficient monitoring with the use of a system to track shipments.

Internal instability combined with external factors is another stumbling block to the success of CPEC. The Baloch people have been living with a sense of deprivation for years now. Another rather disturbing fact is RAW’s involvement with the ‘Baloch liberation movement’ and Baloch student federations. The sense of deprivation of the Baloch could be reduced by giving them due rights and bring their province at a par with others.

Balochistan Chief Minister Sanaullah Zehri and an Iranian delegation led by the governor of the Iranian province of Sistan-Baluchestan, Aaqa Ali Hosth Hashmi, decided to set up a railway track between Chabahar and Gwadar. If this becomes a reality, Iran and Pakistan would be able to have a mutually beneficial relation, putting an end to RAW’s involvement along the western border.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 11th, 2017

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Sabotaging the Gwadar and CPEC Project by Nasurullah Brohi

 

The external infiltration has always been a major reason for the instability in Pakistan and despite huge diplomatic efforts and raising voices at various international forums; the issue has never been resolved. Particularly, right from the proclamation of the China’s investment plans for the development of Gawadar port and CPEC projects with an announcement of $46 billion development projects for Pakistan, the regional rogue powers never sat with ease. Since, with its immense trade potential, the Gwadar Port provides the shortest trade route and serves as a corridor between the Persian Gulf and Western China.

Notably, China provides over 80 percent of the $248 million for the development of the Gwadar Port. The decision to invest on Gwadar Port, allows the regional states and the trade partners to benefit through a short, safe and convenient trade route that effectively passes through the South China Sea, Pacific Rim, Malacca Strait and Sri Lanka and effectively connects the entire region with the European markets.

Pakistan has always shown serious concerns over the Indian efforts to sabotage the China-Pakistan-Economic-Corridor (CPC) by possible terror attacks aimed at making the CPEC a failure. The issue of sabotaging the projects through the clandestine nexuses against the Pakistan as revealed after the recent apprehension of Indian spy Kulbhushan Yadav with a series of his confessions about the tasks and operations yet were in the pipeline to carry out in Pakistan.

Such motives do not seem merely confined with the objectives to put a single target in chaos but in fact, reflect the eager pursuits of creating muddle the situations that ultimately delay the completion of the development projects particularly those underway with the friendly states and predominantly that aim at boosting Pakistani economy.

At the diplomatic fronts, ambitious efforts also try to isolate Pakistan by creating a typical sense of bitterness amidst the relations of Pakistan with its friendly states like China but fortunately, the time-tested friendship

a typical sense of bitterness amidst the relations of Pakistan with its friendly states like China but fortunately, the time-tested friendship between the two countries, and the wisdom of their leaderships never let such immoral tactics to become successful. Many analysts believe, since, India considers China as a regional competitor, therefore; it frequently tries overcoming the China rise that greatly diminishes the chances of Indian ambitions of becoming a regional and later on a global power.

With over 46 billion dollars investment, the project would greatly increase the political and economic influence of China in the region, therefore; the Indian side always attempted through the despicable means to creating law and order situation in the region. Such tactics often used as a tool to compel the Chinese to vacate the Gawadar port and eventually lose interest in the completion of the CPEC and Gwadar projects. Though India poured an initial investment of $150 million for the development of Iranian Port of Chah Bahar but such strives could not undermine the significance of the Gwadar Port.

Comparatively, the Gwadar port enables the regional countries to carry out the trade activities much easier access than Chah Bahar. In addition, the Port also provides landlocked Afghanistan and the Central Asian states with much cheaper opportunity than the Chah Bahar. The Gwadar Port also reduces the trade distances of regional partners from 10,000 km to 2,500 km. moreover; the regional trade partners will effectively save the cost and time as well.

However, the firmness Chinese and Pakistani government is always obvious for making the long cherished dream a resounding success. For the reasons of security and the timely completion of the CPEC project additionally with the successful functioning of the Gwadar Free Trade Zone, Pakistan has allocated a special security division of over 8, 000 military personnel. In addition, an estimated number of 90,000 security personnel comprising the paramilitary and other security services of Pakistan also vigilantly monitor and ready to curb all the Indian secret activities for sabotaging the Chinese investment plans in Pakistan.

Reference

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