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Geostrategic Importance Of Pakistan Essay In Urdu

This article is about the country. For other uses, see Pakistan (disambiguation).

Coordinates: 30°N70°E / 30°N 70°E / 30; 70

Islamic Republic of Pakistan

اِسلامی جمہوریہ پاكِستان‬ (Urdu)
Islāmī Jumhūriyah Pākistān[1]

Motto: Īmān, Ittihād, Nazam
ایمان، اتحاد، نظم‬ (Urdu)
"Faith, Unity, Discipline" [2]

Area controlled by Pakistan shown in dark green; claimed but uncontrolled region shown in light green

CapitalIslamabad
33°40′N73°10′E / 33.667°N 73.167°E / 33.667; 73.167
Largest cityKarachi
24°51′36″N67°00′36″E / 24.86000°N 67.01000°E / 24.86000; 67.01000
Official languages
Recognised regional languages
National languageUrdu[11][12]
Ethnic groups(2016)44.68% Punjabis
15.42% Pashtuns
14.1% Sindhis
8.38% Saraikis
7.57% Muhajirs
3.57% Balochs
6.28% Others[13]
Religion96.4% Islam(Official)[14]
3.6% others[13]
DemonymPakistani
GovernmentFederal parliamentary constitutional republic

• President

Mamnoon Hussain

• Prime Minister

Shahid Khaqan Abbasi

• Chairman of the Senate

Sadiq Sanjrani

• Speaker of the Assembly

Sardar Ayaz Sadiq

• Chief Justice

Mian Saqib Nisar
LegislatureParliament

• Upper house

Senate

• Lower house

National Assembly
Independence from the United Kingdom

• Dominion

14 August 1947

• Islamic Republic

23 March 1956

• Current constitution

14 August 1973
Area

• Total

881,913 km2 (340,509 sq mi)[a][16] (33rd)

• Water (%)

2.86
Population

• 2017 census

209,970,000[17] (5th)

• Density

244.4/km2 (633.0/sq mi) (56th)
GDP (PPP)2017 estimate

• Total

$1.060 trillion[18] (25th)

• Per capita

$5,374[18] (137th)
GDP (nominal)2017 estimate

• Total

$304.4 billion[19] (42nd)

• Per capita

$1,629 [20] (145th)
Gini (2013)30.7[21]
medium
HDI (2015) 0.550[22]
medium · 147th
CurrencyPakistani rupee (₨) (PKR)
Time zonePST(UTC+5b)
Drives on theleft[23]
Calling code+92
ISO 3166 codePK
Internet TLD.pk

Website
www.pakistan.gov.pk

Pakistan[b] (Urdu: پاکِستان‬‎), officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan (Urdu: اِسلامی جمہوریہ پاکِستان‬‎), is a country in South Asia and crossroads of Middle East and Central Asia. It is the fifth-most populous country with a population exceeding 209,970,000 people.[17] In area, it is the 33rd-largest country, spanning 881,913 square kilometres (340,509 square miles). Pakistan has a 1,046-kilometre (650-mile) coastline along the Arabian Sea and Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by India to the east, Afghanistan to the west, Iran to the southwest, and China in the far northeast. It is separated narrowly from Tajikistan by Afghanistan's Wakhan Corridor in the northwest, and also shares a maritime border with Oman.

The territory that now constitutes Pakistan was the site of several ancient cultures, including the Mehrgarh of the Neolithic and the Bronze AgeIndus Valley Civilisation, and was later home to kingdoms ruled by people of different faiths and cultures, including Hindus, Indo-Greeks, Muslims, Turco-Mongols, Afghans, and Sikhs. The area has been ruled by numerous empires and dynasties, including the Persian Achaemenid Empire, Alexander III of Macedon, the Indian Mauryan Empire, the Arab Umayyad Caliphate, the Gupta Empire,[24] the Delhi Sultanate, the Mongol Empire, the Mughal Empire, the Afghan Durrani Empire, the Sikh Empire (partially), and, most recently, the British Empire.

Pakistan is the only country to have been created in the name of Islam.[25][26] As a result of the Pakistan Movement led by Muhammad Ali Jinnah and the subcontinent's struggle for independence, Pakistan was created in 1947 as an independent homeland for Indian Muslims.[27] It is an ethnically and linguistically diverse country, with a similarly diverse geography and wildlife. Initially a dominion, Pakistan adopted a constitution in 1956, becoming an Islamic republic. An ethnic civil war in 1971 resulted in the secession of East Pakistan as the new country of Bangladesh.[28] In 1973 Pakistan adopted a new constitution establishing, alongside its pre-existing parliamentary republic status, a federal government based in Islamabad consisting of four provinces and four federal territories. The new constitution also stipulated that all laws are to conform to the injunctions of Islam as laid down in the Quran and Sunnah.[29]

A regional[30][31][32] and middle power,[33][34][35] Pakistan has the sixth-largest standing armed forces in the world and is also a nuclear power as well as a declared nuclear-weapons state, the second in South Asia and the only nation in the Muslim world to have that status. Pakistan has a semi-industrialised economy with a well-integrated agriculture sector and a growing services sector.[36][37] The Pakistani economy is the 24th-largest in the world in terms of purchasing power and the 41st-largest in terms of nominal GDP (World Bank). It is ranked among the emerging and growth-leading economies of the world,[38][39] and is backed by one of the world's largest and fastest-growing middle class.[40][41]

Pakistan's political history since independence has been characterized by periods of military rule, political instability and conflicts with India. The country continues to face challenging problems, including overpopulation, terrorism, poverty, illiteracy, and corruption.[42][43][44][45] Pakistan is a member of the United Nations, the Non-Aligned Movement, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, the Commonwealth of Nations, the Economic Cooperation Organisation, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation, the Developing Eight, and the G20 developing nations, Group of 24, Group of 77, and ECOSOC. It is also an associate member of CERN. Pakistan is a signatory to the Kyoto Protocol, the Paris Agreement, and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

Etymology

The name Pakistan literally means "land of the pure" in Urdu and Persian. It alludes to the word pāk meaning pure in Persian and Pashto.[46] The suffix ـستان (-stān) is a Persian word meaning the place of, and also recalls the synonymous (and cognate) Sanskrit word sthānaस्थान.[47]

The name of the country was coined in 1933 as Pakstan by Choudhry Rahmat Ali, a Pakistan Movement activist, who published it in his pamphlet Now or Never,[48] using it as an acronym ("thirty million Muslim brethren who live in PAKSTAN") referring to the names of the five northern regions of the British Raj: Punjab, Afghania, Kashmir, Sindh, and Baluchistan.[49][50][51] The letter i was incorporated to ease pronunciation.[52]

History

Main article: History of Pakistan

See also: Outline of South Asian history

Early and medieval age

Main articles: Indus Valley Civilization, Vedic Civilization, Mauryan Empire, Indo-Greek Kingdom, Gupta Empire, Pala Empire, Sikh Empire, and Mughal Empire

Some of the earliest ancient human civilisations in South Asia originated from areas encompassing present-day Pakistan.[53] The earliest known inhabitants in the region were Soanian during the Lower Paleolithic, of whom stone tools have been found in the Soan Valley of Punjab.[54] The Indus region, which covers most of present day Pakistan, was the site of several successive ancient cultures including the Neolithic Mehrgarh[55] and the Bronze Age Indus Valley Civilisation[57][58][59][60] (2,800–1,800 BCE) at Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro.[61][62]

The Vedic Civilisation (1500–500 BCE), characterised by Indo-Aryan culture, during this period the Vedas, the oldest scriptures associated with Hinduism, were composed and this culture later became well established in the region.[63][64]Multan was an important Hindu pilgrimage centre.[65] The Vedic civilisation flourished in the ancient Gandhāran city of Takṣaśilā, now Taxila in the Punjab, which was founded around 1000 BCE.[55] Successive ancient empires and kingdoms ruled the region: the Persian Achaemenid Empire (around 519 BCE), Alexander the Great's empire in 326 BCE[67] and the Maurya Empire, founded by Chandragupta Maurya and extended by Ashoka the Great, until 185 BCE.[55] The Indo-Greek Kingdom founded by Demetrius of Bactria (180–165 BCE) included Gandhara and Punjab and reached its greatest extent under Menander (165–150 BCE), prospering the Greco-Buddhist culture in the region.[55][68] Taxila had one of the earliest universities and centres of higher education in the world, which was established during the late Vedic period in 6th century BCE.[69][70] The school consisted of several monasteries without large dormitories or lecture halls where the religious instruction was provided on an individualistic basis.[70] The ancient university was documented by the invading forces of Alexander the Great, "the like of which had not been seen in Greece," and was also recorded by Chinese pilgrims in the 4th or 5th century CE.[71][72][73][74]

At its zenith, the Rai Dynasty (489–632 CE) of Sindh ruled this region and the surrounding territories.[75] The Pala Dynasty was the last Buddhist empire, which, under Dharmapala and Devapala, stretched across South Asia from what is now Bangladesh through Northern India to Pakistan.

The Arab conqueror Muhammad bin Qasim conquered Sindh in 711 CE.[76][77][78][79][80] The Pakistan government's official chronology claims this as the time when the foundation of Pakistan was laid[76][81][82] but the concept of Pakistan came in 19th century.The Early Medieval period (642–1219 CE) witnessed the spread of Islam in the region. During this period, Sufimissionaries played a pivotal role in converting a majority of the regional Buddhist and Hindu population to Islam.[83] These developments set the stage for the rule of several successive Muslim empires in the region, including the Ghaznavid Empire (975–1187 CE), the Ghorid Kingdom, and the Delhi Sultanate (1206–1526 CE). The Lodi dynasty, the last of the Delhi Sultanate, was replaced by the Mughal Empire (1526–1857 CE).

The Mughals introduced Persian literature and high culture, establishing the roots of Indo-Persian culture in the region.[84] From the region of modern-day Pakistan, key cities during the Mughal rule were Lahore and Thatta,[85] both of which were chosen as the site of impressive Mughal buildings.[86] In the early 16th century, the region remained under the Mughal Empire ruled by Muslim emperors.[87] By the early 18th century, increasing European influence contributed to the slow disintegration of the empire as the lines between commercial and political dominance became increasingly blurred.[87]

During this time, the English East India Company had established coastal outposts.[87] Control over the seas, greater resources, technology, and British military protection led the Company to increasingly flex its military muscle, allowing the Company to gain control over the subcontinent by 1765 and sideline European competitors.[88] Expanding access beyond Bengal and the subsequent increased strength and size of its army enabled it to annex or subdue most of region by the 1820s.[87] Many historians see this as the start of the region's colonial period.[87] By this time, with its economic power severely curtailed by the British parliament and itself effectively made an arm of British administration, the Company began more deliberately to enter non-economic arenas such as education, social reform, and culture.[87] Such reforms included the enforcement of the English Education Act in 1835 and the introduction of the Indian Civil Service (ICS).[89] Traditional madrasahs—primary institutions of higher learning for Muslims in the subcontinent—were no longer supported by the English Crown, and nearly all of the madrasahs lost their financial endowment.[90]

Colonial period

Main articles: Aligarh Movement and British Raj

The gradual decline of the Mughal Empire in the early 18th century enabled the Sikh Empire to control larger areas until the British East India Company gained ascendancy over the Indian subcontinent.[91] A rebellion in 1857 called the Sepoy mutiny was the region's major armed struggle against the British Empire and Queen Victoria.[92] Divergence in the relationship between Hinduism and Islam created a major rift in British India that led to racially motivated religious violence in India.[93] The language controversy further escalated the tensions between Hindus and Muslims.[94] The Hindu renaissance witnessed an awakening of intellectualism in traditional Hinduism and saw the emergence of more assertive influence in the social and political spheres in British India.[95][96] An intellectual movement to counter the Hindu renaissance was led by Sir Syed Ahmad Khan, who helped found the All-India Muslim League in 1901 and envisioned, as well as advocated for, the two-nation theory.[91] In contrast to the Indian Congress's anti-British efforts, the Muslim League was a pro-British movement whose political program inherited the British values that would shape Pakistan's future civil society.[97] In events during World War I, British Intelligence foiled an anti-Englishconspiracy involving the nexus of Congress and the German Empire.[citation needed] The largely non-violent independence struggle led by the Indian Congress engaged millions of protesters in mass campaigns of civil disobedience in the 1920s and 1930s against the British Empire.[98][99][100]

The Muslim League slowly rose to mass popularity in the 1930s amid fears of under-representation and neglect of Muslims in politics. In his presidential address of 29 December 1930, Allama Iqbal called for "the amalgamation of North-West Muslim-majority Indian states" consisting of Punjab, North-West Frontier Province, Sindh, and Balochistan.[102] The perceived neglect of muslim interests by Congress led provincial governments during the period of 1937–39 convinced Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan to espouse the two-nation theory and led the Muslim League to adopt the Lahore Resolution of 1940, popularly known as the Pakistan Resolution.[91] In World War II, Jinnah and British-educatedfounding fathers in the Muslim League supported the United Kingdom's war efforts, countering opposition against it whilst working towards Sir Syed's vision.[103]

Pakistan Movement

Main articles: History of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, Pakistan Movement, and Partition of India

The 1946 elections resulted in the Muslim League winning 90 percent of the seats reserved for Muslims. Thus, the 1946 election was effectively a plebiscite in which the Indian Muslims were to vote on the creation of Pakistan, a plebiscite won by the Muslim League.[104] This victory was assisted by the support given to the Muslim League by the support of the landowners of Sindh and Punjab. The Congress, which initially denied the Muslim League's claim of being the sole representative of Indian Muslims, was now forced to recognise the fact.[104] The British had no alternative except to take Jinnah's views into account as he had emerged as the sole spokesperson of India's Muslims. However, the British did not want India to be partitioned, and in one last effort to prevent it they devised the Cabinet Mission plan.[105]

As the cabinet mission failed, the British government announced its intention to end the British Raj in India in 1946–47.[106]Nationalists in British India—including Jawaharlal Nehru and Abul Kalam Azad of Congress, Jinnah of the All-India Muslim League, and Master Tara Singh representing the Sikhs—agreed to the proposed terms of transfer of power and independence in June 1947 with the Viceroy of India, Lord Mountbatten of Burma.[107] As the United Kingdom agreed to the partitioning of India in 1947, the modern state of Pakistan was established on 14 August 1947(27th of Ramadan in 1366 of the Islamic Calendar), amalgamating the Muslim-majority eastern and northwestern regions of British India.[100] It comprised the provinces of Balochistan, East Bengal, the North-West Frontier Province, West Punjab, and Sindh.[91][107]

In the riots that accompanied the partition in Punjab Province, it is believed that between 200,000 and 2,000,000[108][109][110][111][112][113] people were killed in what some have described as a retributive genocide between the religions[114][115] while 50,000 Muslim women were abducted and raped by Hindu and Sikh men and 33,000 Hindu and Sikh women also experienced the same fate at the hands of Muslims.[116][117][118][119] Around 6.5 million Muslims moved from India to West Pakistan and 4.7 million Hindus and Sikhs moved from West Pakistan to India.[120] It was the largest mass migration in human history.[121][122][123] Dispute over Jammu and Kashmir led to the First Kashmir War in 1948.[124][125]

Independence and modern Pakistan

Main articles: Dominion of Pakistan and History of Pakistan

"You are free; you are free to go to your temples, you are free to go to your mosques or to any other place or worship in this State of Pakistan. You may belong to any religion or caste or creed – that has nothing to do with the business of the State."

—Muhammad Ali Jinnah's first speech to the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan[126]

After independence in 1947, Jinnah, the President of the Muslim League, became the nation's first Governor-General as well as the first President-Speaker of the Parliament,[127] but he died of tuberculosis on 11 September 1948.[128] Meanwhile, Pakistan's founding fathers agreed to appoint Liaquat Ali Khan, the secretary-general of the party, the nation's firstPrime Minister. With dominion status in the Commonwealth of Nations, independent Pakistan had two British monarchs before it became a republic.[127]

The creation of Pakistan was never fully accepted by many British leaders, among them Lord Mountbatten.[129] Mountbatten clearly expressed his lack of support and faith in the Muslim League's idea of Pakistan.[130] Jinnah refused Mountbatten's offer to serve as Governor-General of Pakistan.[131] When Mountbatten was asked by Collins and Lapierre if he would have sabotaged Pakistan had he known that Jinnah was dying of tuberculosis, he replied 'most probably'.[132]

Maulana Shabbir Ahmad Usmani, a respected Deobandi alim (scholar) who occupied the position of Shaykh al-Islam in Pakistan in 1949, and Maulana Mawdudi of Jamaat-i-Islami played a pivotal role in the demand for an Islamic constitution. Mawdudi demanded that the Constituent Assembly make an explicit declaration affirming the "supreme sovereignty of God" and the supremacy of the shariah in Pakistan.[133]

A significant result of the efforts of the Jamaat-i-Islami and the ulama was the passage of the Objectives Resolution in March 1949. The Objectives Resolution, which Liaquat Ali Khan called the second most important step in Pakistan's history, declared that "sovereignty over the entire universe belongs to God Almighty alone and the authority which He has delegated to the State of Pakistan through its people for being exercised within the limits prescribed by Him is a sacred trust". The Objectives Resolution has been incorporated as a preamble to the constitutions of 1956, 1962, and 1973.[134]

Democracy was stalled by the martial law that had been enforced by President Iskander Mirza, who was replaced by army chief, General Ayub Khan. After adopting a presidential system in 1962, the country experienced exceptional growth until a second war with India in 1965 that led to an economic downturn and wide-scale public disapproval in 1967.[135][136]Consolidating control from Ayub Khan in 1969, President Yahya Khan had to deal with a devastating cyclone that caused 500,000 deaths in East Pakistan.[137]

In 1970 Pakistan held its first democratic elections since independence, meant to mark a transition from military rule to democracy, but after the East Pakistani Awami League won against the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), Yahya Khan and the military establishment refused to hand over power.[138][139]Operation Searchlight, a military crackdown on the Bengali nationalist movement, led to a declaration of independence and the waging of a war of liberation by the Bengali Mukti Bahini forces in East Pakistan.[139][140] However, in West Pakistan the conflict was described as a civil war as opposed to a war of liberation.[141]

Independent researchers estimate that between 300,000 and 500,000 civilians died during this period while the Bangladesh government puts the number of dead at three million,[142] a figure that is now nearly universally regarded as excessively inflated.[143] Some academics such as Rudolph Rummel and Rounaq Jahan say both sides[144] committed genocide; others such as Richard Sisson and Leo E. Rose believe there was no genocide.[145] In response to India's support for the insurgency in East Pakistan, preemptive strikes on India by Pakistan's air force, navy

Over 10 million people were uprooted from their homeland and travelled on foot, bullock carts, and trains to their promised new home during the Partition of India. During the partition, between 200,000 to 2,000,000 people were killed in the retributive genocide.[101]
The American CIA film on Pakistan made in 1950 examines the history and geography of Pakistan.

Introduction:

Gwadar Port is the third deep sea port in Pakistan after Karachi and Port Qasim. Located on the western end of Baluchistan coast, Gwadar has 600km long coastal belt with beaches and bays. It lies just 624 nautical km to the east of Strait of Hormuz, which is an important rout of oil tankers bound for Japan and western countries out of Persian Gulf. Once a small fishing town along the Makran Coast is now set to be become a mega seaport which will fulfill the requirement of three strategically important regions the oil rich Middle East, heavily populated South Asia and Western China and the economically emerging resource-laden region of Central Asia. The Gwadar port is expected to generate billions of dollars in revenues and create at least two million jobs. Gwadar port is the living symbol of Pak-China relationship. ECO highway, Coastal Highway and other mega projects in road sectors will connect Gwadar free port with Central Asian States, Gulf States, China and rest of the country. In 2007 government of Pakistan handed over port operations to PSA Singapore for 25 years.

The construction of a deep sea port at Gwadar is just one component of the Greater Gwadar Plan. Under this plan, which will be carried out by Gwadar Development Authority, in addition to Gwadar port, a network of roads, connecting Gwadar with Karachi, Pasni, Ormara and Turbat will be constructed in four phases.

Location:

The project was sited in an obscure fishing village Gwadar Pakistan’s western province of Baluchistan, bordering Afghanistan to the northwest and Iran to the southwest. Gwadar bounded by the Persian Gulf in the west and Gulf of Oman in the southwest located at the western end of Baluchistan coast, Gwadar has 600km long coastal belt with beaches and bays. It lies 624 nautical km to the east of Strait of Hormuz, 460km away from Karachi 120km Iranian border in the west.

History:

Until 1958 Gwadar was part of Oman but was transferred to Pakistan on 8 September 1958. The Gwadar enclave sold to Pakistan (effective 8 December 1958). First time in 1964 it was thought to build a port at Gwadar and but being ignored for four decades. It was integrated within the Baluchistan on 1 July 1977. In 1992, Gwadar fish harbor reached its completion. The Gwadar deep sea port project started in June 2002 with the help of China. By the end of 2004 first phase of port had been completed.

Geopolitical Importance:

Gwadar port has great strategic value, enhancing Pakistan’s importance in the whole region. It extended Pakistan’s importance from Persian Gulf through the Indian Ocean to Southeast Asia and the Fareast. It is close to the Strait of Hormuz, through which more than 13 million barrel oil per day passes.

Gwadar Port: A Gateway to Southwest and Central Asia:

The April 2002 inauguration of the Gwadar seaport project on the Arabian Sea coast in southern Baluchistan with the Chinese collection was a landmark event. When completed, the port is likely to open up new vistas of cooperation and development in the region. However, despite its inability to secure needed aid, Pakistan always sustained hope that some day the port facilities would serve as gateway to the Central Asian Republics. But the continued instability in Afghanistan put damper on these plans. It is expected that nearly 20 countries of the Middle East, Central Asian, South Asia and China will benefited from this mega-project. The port will provide facilities of warehousing, transshipment, transit, coastal trade, provision of commercial and industrial facilities for international export-import trade, especially that of Afghanistan, Central Asian States, Oman, UAE, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Iraq, Iran, China and other countries.

World’s natural energy is mostly concentrated in the Central Asian Republics Middle East. Countries like China and India, due to there ever growing population and increased industrial activity need additional energy. All these countries are looking for safe, cost effective and uninterrupted supply of natural energy to sustain their industrial growth and development. Pakistan, due to its geo-strategic location at the crossroads of three sub-regional systems i.e. South Asia, West Asia and Central Asia is in a position to bridge this gap by providing the shortest possible route for the transportation of this energy. The geo-strategic location of Pakistan at the interface of Central and South Asia provides these states the shortest possible route to the warm waters of the Arabian Sea. Pakistani ports of Karachi and Gwadar are barely 1600km away. Pakistan can provide these CARs with the transit trade and pipeline routs for the export of their oil and gas to the outside world, which the CARs desperately need for their economic development.

The Central Asia region has an area of 1.6 million square miles. Total oil reserves of the Caspian Sea region are estimated at above 200billion barrels. Currently total production is 1 million barrel per day. It is estimated that this could reach 3.4 million barrel per day by the year 2012, assuming the increased demand of oil in the world markets. On the other hand, total gas reserves are over 3,000 billion cubic meters. Natural gas reserves in the Caspian Region are even larger than the region’s oil reserves. Main reservoirs of oil and gas are in Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan. Due to natural resources politics of the Caspian Region would continue to dominate the course of events in all regional countries like Pakistan, Iran, India, China, Russia and other interested stake holders like US, Saudi Arabia and UAE. The first phase of the Gwadar port at a cost of 250 million dollars was being built with the Chinese assistance. China had provided 198 million dollar to Pakistan for the construction of Gwadar port. China also has invested 200million dollar to building a coastal highway that will connect the Gwadar port with Karachi, Establishment of industrial zone, oil storage and refining facilities adjacent to the port and export possibility of abundant mineral resources of Baluchistan, particularly from Saindak Copper-Gold Project, makes it more attractive. The Saindak project had also been leased out to a Chinese firm. Experts believe that even one Agosta 90B submarine deployed at Gwadar could defend the port due to its geographic advantage. Why the new emerging super power China has invested heavily in this project? China doesn’t have any port of hot waters, which can be used the whole year. The Shanghai port is approximately 4500 km away from Chinese industrial areas and takes an additional time. This costs them a lot in the form of duties and taxes as well. Compared to this Gwadar port is only at a distance of 2,500 km from China and the port will be working the whole year because of its hot waters.

China’s decision to finance the construction of Gwadar and coastal highway linking to Karachi will help its plans to develop western China. The distance from Kashgar to Chinese east coast is 3,500 km whereas distance from kashgar to Gwadar is only 1,500[1].

Geo-Political and Geo-Strategic ties between Pakistan and China:

Despite having a non-Nato ally status the honey-moon period between the USA and Pakistan is ion the decline. National priorities have been altered and the USA is in search of new friends and strategic partners, like India in our region. The policy makers in Islamabad realize the emerging bitter reality and should not act upon the good wishes of Washington with closed eye any more. Because everyone is following its hot pursuits similarly the government of Pakistan must look for the safe heaven for the expected rainy days in the future. Pakistan badly needs energy and , China can provide, or fulfill, our future energy requirements[2]. According to many regional experts close bilateral Pak-Sino ties may create geo-political and geo–strategic equilibrium in region in the days to come.

According to official figures, the annual trade between the two countries has already surpassed 7 billion dollars during 2008 and the sides are aiming to 15 billion dollars by 2011. With the coming of the agreement on trade in 11 services sectors from October 1,2009, which was signed in February this year during President Asif Ali Zardari’s visit to China, trade is further going to increase between the two countries .Currently, 70 percent of Pakistani’s exports to China are cotton yarn and cotton fabric. Pakistan is also exploring its options with Qatar to construct a five billion dollars gas pipeline project to supply 1.6 billion cubic feet a day. This pipeline would supply natural gas from Qatar’s North Dome Field to Pakistan via a sub sea pipeline from Oman. China is also exploring ways to tap Saudi Arabian gas through Gusa Gas Company of Qatar that already has a joint venture for a deep sea pipeline with Pakistan. China and Pakistan have agreed in principle to build trans-Karakoram oil pipeline along the Karakorum Highway to connect Middle East with North-western China through Gwadar. A blue print of proposed 3300 km long Karakoram oil pipeline was also presented by

Pakistan; this entails a 30-inch diameter pipeline from Gwadar to Khunjerab. The proposed pipeline will be able to handle 12 million tones of oil per year and would cost between US $ 4.5 and 5 billion.

Development of Gwadar Port:

Pakistan, with the partial financial and technical assistance of China, had completed the first phase of a deep-sea port in the south-western city of Gwadar, located at the opening of the energy-rich Persian Gulf. The port was formally inaugurated on 20th march 2007 by Pakistan’s President, Pervez Musharraf, and the Chinese communication minister, Li Shasheng. China has also agreed to participate in phase-2 of the Gwadar Port Project, which will be completed at a cost of $600 million[3]. Phase-2 will include : four container berths ; one bulk cargo terminal  (to handle 100,000 DWT ships) ; one grain terminal ; one Ro-Ro terminal ; and two oil terminal (to handle 200,000 DWT ships).

Up-gradation Of The Karakoram Highway:

The decision to up-grade of KKH was taken during President Musharraf’s visit to China in February 2006, when Pakistan. President Musharraf said, “This road, when up-graded will provide the shortest route to the sea for products manufactured in China. The same road can serve to provide overland route for trade between China and India, thus linking two of the largest markets in Asia” we are talking of Pakistan-China inter-connectivity in terms of energy and trade, improvement in highways, development of railway link and gas and oil pipeline linkages and even fibre-optic connectivity along the highway under one project”. Pakistan is also constructing a network of highways and railways with the country[4]. To facilitate a North-South Trans Energy Corridor (TEC) Karachi has been linked with Gwadar through a coastal highway, and plains are underway to link it to Iran as well. Another major 950 km long highway, connecting Gwadar to Turbat, Khuzdar and Ratodero, will be completed in the next 30 month.

Construction of Railways:

A railway line along the KKH, connecting Pakistan and China is being considered as an integral part of the Trade and Energy Corridor Project. The purpose of building a rail line is not only for trade purposes but also to transport energy, in case a pipe line is not a variable option. This rail track will be link to Gwadar, where oil-refining and storage facilities are being constructed. Pakistan railways has short-listed too companies, one from china and the other one are joint German-Austrian companies, ILF Consulting Engineers, for the study of 1000 km rail-track.

Energy Co-operation and Pipelines:

A fame work agreement on Energy Co-operation was signed in Beijing on 29th Feb 2006, between the Ministry of Petroleum and natural Resources of Pakistan and the National Development Reforms Commission of China. In the pursuance of this agreement, the first Energy Forum was held in Islamabad from 25-27 April 2006.at the Energy Forum, a blue print of the proposed 3300 km long Karakoram oil Pipeline was also presented by Pakistani side; this entails a 30-inch diameter pipeline from Gwadar to khunjerab, passing through Awaran, Pir Muhammad, Khuzdar, Shikarpur, D. I. Khan, Kundian, Mianwali, Talagang, Pindi Ghaib, Fateh Jang, Haripur, Mansehra ,Patan, Dasu, Chilas, Bunjil, Gilgit, Sust, and Khunjerab pass[5].

Benefits for Pakistan:

Pakistan can fulfill her energy needs which are beyond her indigenous production, additionally she can also accrue number of benefits such as:

1)      Enhance trade with CARs / Middle East.

2)      The relations with neighboring and regional countries can be improved and trade can be enhanced.

3)      Through IPI /TAPI pipelines, relations with India can be normalized and that can also act as CBMs.

4)      Pakistan can earn lot of foreign exchange through transit fee and improve her foreign exchange reserves.

5)      The transit fee can be utilized for development purpose.

6)      There will be a gradual growth and improvement in most of the backward areas and towns / villages.

7)      The living conditions and literacy rate of these areas can also be improved.

8)      Lot of new jobs would come up due to new projects which would lower the overall rate of unemployment.

9)      Tourism and hotel industries can be boosted as no of foreigners would be visiting Pakistan for the construction of these projects.

10)    It would improve the overall economy of the country.

Conclusion:

Located at the entrance of the Persian Gulf and about 460 kms from Karachi, Gwadar has had immense Geostrategic significance on many accounts. The continued unstable regional environment in the Persian Gulf in particular as a result of the Iran/Iraq war, the Gulf war and the emergence of the new Central Asian States has added to this importance. Considering the Geo-economic imperative of the regional changes, the ADB’s Ports Master Plan studies considered an alternate to the Persian Gulf Ports to capture the transit trade of the Central Asian Republic (CAR) as well as the trans-shipment trade of the region.

It’s amazing that tomorrow’s small fishing village ‘Gwadar’ is fast emerging as a Deep Sea Port today. This is important to note that the Government of Pakistan, keeping in view its utmost significance in the area, has declared ‘Gwadar’ as a Duty Free Port and a Free Economic Zone.
In fact, Gwadar enjoys the status of a third Deep Sea Port of Pakistan which has a special significance with reference to trade links with Central Asian Countries, Persian Gulf, East Africa, United Arab Emirates and North Western India.


[1] Imtiaz Bokhari, “The US, Oil and Geopolitics of the Persian Gulf”, IPRI Journal, Vol. IV, No. 2 (2004), p. 51.

[2] Lin Shanglin, “Pakistan-China Relations”, Pakistan Horizon, Vol. 54, No. 3 (July 2008), p. 13.

[3]  Tariq Mahmud, “Afghanistan in Chinese Strategy Toward South and Central Asia”, China Brief, Vol. 8, No. 10 (2008), p. 27.

[4] Safdar Khan, “Karakoram Highway’s Gwadar Link Likely”, Dawn (5 July 2006), p. 5.

[5] Iftikhar Ahmad, “Regional and International Interest in Oil and Gas Pipelines to Gwadar”, The Dialogue, Vol. II, No. 2 (2007), p. 127.

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