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Showing posts from January 27, 2019

Malaysia drops $27.8bn Belt and Road project

Malaysian Finance Minister Azmin Ali. GLENDA KORPORAAL 12:00AM JANUARY 28, 2019 2 The Malaysian government has cancelled a $US20 billion ($27.8bn) rail project, part of China’s Belt and Road infrastructure initiative, after failing to secure a price cut from Chinese contractors. Malaysia’s Economic Affairs Minister Azmin Ali said on the weekend the Mahathir government had decided to scrap the 688km East Coast Rail Link in a cabinet meeting last week. The Mahathir government had been in negotiations to reduce the price of the project with the China Communications Construction Company. Work on the rail link, which was launched in September 2017 under the government of Najib Razak, was suspended last year after Mahathir Mohamad took office, pending discussions over its pricing as well as allegations of graft that have plagued the project. Mr Azmin said the government was concerned at the high interest bill it would incur to pay for the project which is 85 per cent financed by the

Asean and China struggle to buckle Belt and Road Initiative

 January 28, 2019 Phidel Vineles /Share:     Thailand’s Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha stands next to a model of a high speed rail during the groundbreaking ceremony of the cooperation between Thailand and China on the Bangkok-Nong Khai high speed rail development in Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand on December 21, 2017. Reuters Asean is the world’s sixth-largest economy with a GDP of more than $2.5 trillion and an annual growth rate of around 5 percent. Sustaining this growth requires the region to meet its growing infrastructure needs which China’s Belt and Road Initiative could help fund. But as Phidel Vineles points out there are hurdles that threaten to disrupt the smooth implementation of BRI projects in the region. China’s ambitious Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) continues to draw criticism and disapproval. Its sceptics brand it as China’s Marshall Plan or as a ‘neo-imperial project’. To ensure the initiative’s success, China should heed some of these concerns and take steps

Construction of Gwadar Shipyard to soon be started: Zubaida

        January 27, 2019 Minister for Defence Production Zubaida Jalal says construction of Gwadar Shipyard will soon be started after fulfilling all legal obligations regarding land acquisition.  She said this during her visit to Gwadar Development Authority in Gwadar on Sunday. The Minister said the government will make Gwadar Shipyard a source of development and generating revenue for the country. She said the shipyard is vital for the Gwadar port and it will open up a new era of development in the area

‘Balochistan govt serious about missing persons issue’

Zia Ur Rehman January 28, 2019 The provincial government of Balochistan is taking serious measures to resolve the issue of missing persons with consultations with all stakeholders and according to the law, said Balochistan Minister for Information Zahoor Ahmed Buledi on Sunday. The visiting minister was talking to a select group of journalist at the Karachi Press Club after offering his condolence to KPC Vice-President Saeed Sarbazi on the death of his mother and congratulating the club’s newly-elected cabinet. In the conversation, Buledi spoke on a variety of issues ranging from missing persons and the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor to the previous government’s policies and his province’s share in the National Finance Commission (NFC) Award. He said his government has formed policies to resolve the issue of missing persons, prevent the sale of the land of Balochistan to foreign companies, and seeking a greater share in CPEC and NFC Award and federal government. He said Prime M

The assassination of Aslam Baloch - an act of terrorism - Rahim Baloch Advocate

Aslam Baloch, one of the founders and most prominent commander of Baloch Liberation Army (BLA) was killed on December 25, 2018 in Kandahar in an attack by a suicide bomber sent by Pakistan. Aslam, along with five of his fellow members and commanders, was standing outside of a house when a suicide bomber came there on foot in disguise of a passerby and rushed standing right in front of Aslam before exploding himself. Aslam Baloch was seriously injured and five of his senior colleagues were killed on spot. No group claimed the responsibility for the high profile assassination. However, soon after the unfortunate incident Sarfraz Bugti, ex-Pakistani minister cheered and called the incident a "good news for Pakistan on Jinnah’s birthday”. Sarfaraz Bugti, presently a senator of Pakistan and a former home minister of Balochistan’s puppet government, is known as a close aide of Pakistan army and spy agencies and is behind running a private militia against Baloch freedom fight

Remembering Ustad Fateh Nazar – Lyari’s music maestro

Zia Ur Rehman January 11, 2019 As the news of the passing away of Ustad Fateh Nazar, a prominent musician from Lyari, spread last week, an air of gloom permeated the city’s ancient town. Nazar, also known as Lala Fateh Mohammad Niskandi, one of the remaining few classical singers and music directors that Lyari has produced, passed away because of heart attack on December 31. Born in December 1936 in Lyari’s Gul Muhammad Lane nieghbourhood, music and football were in his blood. His father Ustad Nazar Niskandi – who migrated from Iran’s Balochsitan (now Sistan and Balochistan) province to Lyari in 1923 after receiving his early understanding of classical music from Bombay (now Mumbai) – was also a known musician who excelled in classical musical compositions. Since his boyhood, Nazar was passionately fond of music and wanted to be a musician. He obtained his early education in Lyari and won awards in an inter-colleges music competition in 1954. “When my father realised that I am

Baloch pashks and kurtis to be showcased at Canada’s top fashion week in March

* Designer says she figured that in order to connect to an international clientele, she could use her design elements but had to adhere to simplified Western silhouettes JANUARY 6, 2019 Bollywood bigwigs Alia Bhatt, Kangana Renaut and Shabana Azmi have been seen wearing it and it is Vancouver Fashion Week’s (VFW) turn to parade it on its coveted platform. The prestigious fashion week will be held from March 18-24, 2019. The Balochi dress, or frock, as it is sometimes called, inspired designer Rabia Dastagir. “I organically gravitated towards my own roots,” she said. But she realised that while the Baloch ‘Doch’ embroidery and designs would attract international customers, the local silhouettes might not appeal to them. “I figured that in order to connect to the clientele, I can use my design elements but I have to adhere to simplified Western silhouettes, so the outfits remain wearable,” she added. Rabia Dastagir claims she now has clients from not just the North American marke

Artists from China's Gansu province hold Chinese New Year's concert in Riga

Source: Xinhua 2019-01-27 21:46:24 Musician of Gansu Dance Troupe are performing during Chinese New Year's show at the Great Guild Hall in Riga, Latvia on Saturday night, on Jan. 26, 2019. The orchestra of the Gansu Dance Troupe introduced to the Latvian audience Chinese musical traditions by performing Chinese melodies, including Flying Apsaras and the Silk Road, a masterpiece reflecting the profound influences of Chinese dance traditions as well as the history of the region. (Xinhua/Janis Laizans) RIGA, Jan. 26 (Xinhua) -- Artists of Gansu Dance Troupe visited the Latvian capital this weekend to present Chinse New Year's show to audience at the Great Guild Hall in Riga Old Town on Saturday night. Opening the concert Happy Chinese New Year, Sun Yinglai, charge d'affaires a.i. of the Chinese embassy in Latvia, invited everybody to join in celebrating the Spring Festival and learn about its traditions and symbolism.  Musician of Gansu Dance Troupe are performing during

Chinese arts troupe captivates Ugandan audience ahead of Spring Festival

Source:Xinhua Published: 2019/1/27 7 An arts troupe from China's northwest Shaanxi Province on Saturday fascinated hundreds of revelers with a spectacular show in Uganda's capital Kampala.  The performances held at Makerere University, Uganda's top university, attracted an audience that included students, business people and the Chinese community in Uganda.  Sponsored by China's ministry of culture and tourism and the embassy of China in Uganda, the show was held under the framework of the "Happy Chinese New Year."  The "Happy Chinese New Year" celebrations were launched as a project in 2010 to have people in different parts of the world to share the joy and grand celebration with the Chinese people and learn about the Chinese culture.  Zheng Zhuqiang, Chinese ambassador to Uganda, said the troupe visits to promote cultural and tourism exchanges between China and Uganda.  "I believe that with the wonderful performance of the Shaanxi arts

55 years on, China-France ties are entering a new stage

Updated 17:35, 27-Jan-2019 By Meng Yaping Sunday marks the 55th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relationship between China and France. In the past 55 years, the two countries had frequent high-level exchanges, stronger business cooperation, expanding cultural and people-to-people exchanges and close communication and coordination on major international and regional issues. CGTN Infographic Bilateral political ties China and France established diplomatic ties in 1964, making France the first major Western power to recognize the People's Republic of China. Since then, bilateral ties have generally developed smoothly.  In 1997 and 2004, France took the lead in the Western powers by establishing a comprehensive partnership and a comprehensive strategic partnership with China. In 2008, Sino-French relations experienced major twists and turns due to Tibet-related issues. On April 1, 2009, China and France issued a press communique, and Sino-French relations gradua

Five Ambassadors to China receive Silk Road Super Ambassador Award

By Lu Yuanzhi Source:Global Times Published: 2019/1/27 18:45:55 The ambassadors of Pakistan, Maldives, Sri Lanka, Malta and Bosnia and Herzegovina to China were conferred  Silk Road  Super Ambassador Award in Beijing on January 24. Awards were also given to those who contributed to the  Belt and Road  initiative (BRI), including former Prime Minister of Italy Massimo D'Alema. The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is regarded as the "flagship project" of the BRI. It covers wide areas, ranging from transportation to industrial zones. Pakistani Ambassador to China Masood Khalid told the Global Times before the award ceremony that Pakistan has benefited from the CPEC. "Our cooperation is very broad and is expanding, so we are happy. We are confident that as we move forward, we will see more tangible progress in our cooperation, "he said. Maldives is one of the first countries to join the BRI. Ambassador of Maldives to China Mohamed Faisal told the Global T

2018 Belt and Road Trade Reached $1.3 Trillion

2018 Silk Road Business Summit BY  MAREX  2019-01-26 19:50:28 Trade volume between China and countries along the Belt and Road Initiative totaled $1.3 trillion last year, China's Ministry of Commerce (MOC) said last week. This was year-on-year growth of 16.3 percent, 3.7 percentage points higher than China's trade growth in 2018. China exported goods worth $705 billion to belt and road countries last year, up 10.9 percent year-on-year, while importing goods from them worth $563 billion, up 23.9 percent year-on-year. Local media reports state that Chinese firms invested over $15 billion in non-financial sectors in belt and road countries countries last year, up 8.9 percent year-on-year, while receiving $6 billion in investment from them, up 11.9 percent. Merchandise trade between China and Belt and Road countries is predicted to grow by $117 billion this year, according to trade credit insurer Euler Hermes. The report estimates that this will add 0.3 percent to global trad

How Balochistan can develop Sustainably?

Syed Shujaat Ahmed JANUARY 27, 2019 Balochistan is the province with vast roads and infrastructure indicating higher connectivity. The province with a population of 12,344,408 is rich in resources and has connectivity not only through roads but also has a port in the form of Gwadar, a key pillar of China Pakistan Economic Corridor. Economy of the province or any state cannot be only sustained by the availability of infrastructure and investment focusing on it. For any sustained development focus needs to be shifted towards inclusive economic growth, social justice, and protection of environment and natural resources. To achieve these objectives both programmes and projects with sustained efforts by the Federal and provincial government of Balochistan need to focus on development of sustained educational policy followed by political stability and sustainability and focus on human development. For this purpose, only, dialogue between citizens and public officials will enable both to

2 miners killed in trolley accident in Balochistan coal mine

Syed Ali Shah January 27, 2019 Two coal miners died when a trolley hit them inside a coal mine in Balochistan's coal-rich Dukki district on Sunday morning. — Reuters/File Two miners died after being hit by a trolley inside a coal mine in Balochistan's coal-rich Dukki district on Sunday morning. According to Levies sources, the miners were extracting coal from deep within the mine when the trolley hit them. The bodies of the two miners, who died on the spot, have been shifted to District Headquarters Hospital Dukki. The sources said the deceased miners who were from Afghanistan had been working in the Dukki coal mines for the last few years. "[There is] no safety for coal miners," said the central leader of Pakistan Mines Labour Association, Bakht Nawab, adding that miners extract coal at the cost of their lives. ARTICLE CONTINUES AFTER AD Coal miners also claim that they pay taxes to the Balochistan government for their safety. "We pay Rs120 as a miner s

28 years on, Balochistan remains deprived of its water share

BY  MIAN ABRAR  , (LAST UPDATED 17 HOURS AGO) –IRSA blames Sindh for not passing over water share to Balochistan –Sindh says not getting enough water as per 1991 distribution accord  ISLAMABAD:  Water distribution between federating units of Pakistan remains unresolved even after the passage of 28 years since the Water Apportionment Accord (WAA) 1991 as Balochistan is being deprived of almost 33 per cent of its share at the hands of Sindh. In a bid to resolve water disputes, all four provinces had signed the WAA on the sharing of waters of the Indus basin. It is based largely upon the historical use of water by the provinces: Punjab 47%, Sindh 42% Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) 8% and Balochistan 3%. However, even 28 years later, Balochistan suffers as on average it faced a shortage of around 33 per cent against its authorised share. As per the details, the annual share of Balochistan under WAA is 3.87 Million Acre Feet (MAF). Out of the total allocated share of 3.87 MAF, 2.85 MAF is