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Showing posts from December 17, 2019

Strategic Implications of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor

Monday, December 16, 2019 /BY: James SchwemleinPUBLICATION TYPE:Special Report

Great power politics is resurgent in South Asia today. China’s growing military ambition in the region is matched in financial terms by its Belt and Road Initiative, the largest and most advanced component of which is the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor. What remains unclear is how the United States should navigate the new dynamic. This report, which is based on research and consultations with experts worldwide, addresses the question of how the India-Pakistan rivalry will play into the emerging great power competition.The Karakoram Highway connects Pakistan and China through the Khunjerab Pass, the highest altitude border crossing in the world. (View Stock/Alamy Stock Photo)SummaryChina’s changing role in Pakistan offers an opportunity to examine China in a learning mode, in a challenging environment, and as an actor in the decades-long rivalry between Pakistan and India.China’s long-term investments in th…

Under pressure from China, Pakistan Army has taken institutional control over CPEC

The Imran Khan govt has appointed a retired three-star Pakistani general to head the CPEC Authority. Analysts say this is to bring Army directly in command.SRIJAN SHUKLA17 December, 2019">Buildings stand under construction at a development site, operated by China Overseas Ports Holding Co in Gwadar,Pakistan | Asim Hafeez | BloombergNew Delhi: Amid mounting pressure from China over long delays in the completion of key projects in the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), the Pakistan Army has taken control of the newly-established nodal CPEC Authority (CPECA).CPEC is seen as a lifeline for a dwindling Pakistan and is the cornerstone of China’s flagship Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). But over the past couple of years, with the Pakistani economy hitting a deep economic crisis, the timelines for several CPEC projects have been derailed.Now, with the appointment of retired three-star Pakistani Lt Gen Asim Saleem Bajwa as the head of CPECA, the Army has stepped into the official…

CARGO VESSEL THAT DOCKED IN GWADAR INTERCEPTED

Ahmedabad Mirror | Updated: Dec 13, 2019, 06.00 AM IST#PorbandarA cargo vessel was intercepted by the Indian Coast Guard after learning that it had made a stop-over at Gwadar port and the crew had some interaction with the Pakistan Maritime Security Agency (PMSA), an official said on Thursday.The vessel 'Noor-E-Panjtani' was intercepted by the Coast Guard near the International Maritime Boundary Line off Dwarka coast late Wednesday night.
It was escorted to Okha port in Devbhoomi-Dwarka district for further investigation, said district Superintendent of Police Rohan Anand.The vessel is registered in Gujarat, and all the seven crew members belong to Jodia village in adjoining Jamnagar district, the SP said, adding that it had sailed for Gujarat from Dubai a few days ago."The crew claimed they sought PMSA's help to repair the boat at Gwadar. But we cannot rule out the possibility that they might be working at the behest of the Pak agency," the SP added. PTI



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Foundation stone of 150-bed hospital, technical institute in Gwadar laid

BEHRAM BALOCHGWADAR: Provincial Finance Minister Mir Zahoor Ahmed Buledi on Monday laid the foundation stone of a 150-bed hospital and a Pak-China Friendship Technical and Vocational Training Institute.China has provided a grant of 240 million RMB (Chinese currency) for the construction of the hospital and 87 million RMB for the construction of the institute. The two projects would be completed within two years.Speaking at the foundation stone-laying ceremony of the two projects, Balochistan’s Finance Minister Zahoor Ahmed Buledi said that the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) had opened doors of foreign investment in the country.


https://www.dawn.com/news/1522654

Gwadar port operationalised for exports

in Port News 16/12/2019The Gwadar port has been operationalised for export, Adviser to Prime Minister on Trade and Industries Abdul Razak Dawood announced on Saturday, saying that it would reduce the burden on the Karachi port.Dawood said on the microblogging website Twitter that the departure of a vessel, carrying three fish containers worth $50,000 each, for a Far-Eastern country started the seafood exports through Gwadar port.“Big News: Gwadar becomes operational for Exports! Seafood export, in reefer containers, using WeBOC [web-based one customs] system, started on 19 Nov 2019 through COSCO’s [China Ocean Shipping Company] KGS [Karachi-Gwadar-Gulf Service] service,” he said in a tweet.“The vessel loaded 3 containers of fish for Far Eastern ports. Avg value of the cargo is $50,000/container. This wud reduce time taken for trading across borders & also reduce port congestion at Karachi,” the adviser added in his tweet.The Gwadar port is a deep seaport on the Arabian Sea at Gwad…

BOOK REVIEW: Belt and Road: A Chinese World Orde

Belt and Road as a Strategic InitiativeBook ReviewsJabin T JacobVol. 54, Issue No. 49, 14 Dec, 2019Download PDF Version
Jabin T Jacob (jabin.jacob@snu.edu.in) teaches at the Department of International Relations and Governance Studies, Shiv Nadar University, National Capital Region, and Adjunct Research Fellow at the National Maritime Foundation, New Delhi.Belt and Road: A Chinese World Orderby Bruno Maçães, New Delhi: Penguin Random House, 2019; pp xii + 227, ₹ 599.This is an elegantly written, eminently readable book on a subject that has garnered much attention in recent years, namely China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). The Chinese project is often still described as an economic or infrastructure development project, but Bruno Maçães lays out, in no uncertain terms through multiple examples, that this is a grand strategy initiative by Beijing intended to do nothing less than cement China’s position in the world as its pre-eminent power in all senses of the term.Maçães opens by o…

Pakistan revives Belt-and-Road projects under Chinese pressure

Belt and Road InitiativePakistan revives Belt-and-Road projects under Chinese pressureIslamabad calls in senior military official after economic crisis stalled investmentsDecember 11, 2019 1:00 am by Stephanie Findlay in New Delhi and Farhan Bokhari in IslamabadPakistan has bowed to pressure from China to revive a string of Beijing-backed infrastructure projects that have run aground, appointing a senior Pakistani military official to streamline decision-making over the multi-billion-dollar investments.The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor is a key part of the Belt and Road Initiative, which Beijing sees as a 21st-century Silk Road to connect Asia, Africa and Europe. But only half of the announced $62bn-worth of projects in Pakistan are under way as Islamabad scales back its financial commitments while it implements a $6bn IMF bailout package.Beijing is frustrated with the slow pace of the initiative, which is supposed to be a shining example of China’s economically transformative inve…

Syria in 'serious dialogue' with China about joining Belt and Road initiative, says Assad

The Syrian president has described Chinese and Syrian interests as "mutual" Josie Ensor16 DECEMBER 2019 • 3:39 PMBashar al-Assad, the Syrian president, revealed he is in talks with China to join its Belt and Road Initiative, as he looks for funding to rebuild Syria and Beijing looks to extend its influence in the region. Assad said he has proposed a number of projects to Beijing in the hope of securing investment for reconstruction in the war-torn country. “There are mutual interests: it is beneficial to China, Syria and all the countries on this Road,” told Chinese Phoenix TV station. China has for years been trying to revive historic trading links with the Middle East through its Belt and Road initiative, a $1 trillion overseas investment plan. Beijing, which has backed Assad’s government against the opposition, has since become the largest source of foreign investment in the region, signing deals with Egypt, Qatar and Saudi Arabia, among others.Oil-rich Syria was invited …

The Belt and Road: Calculating Winners and Losers

A World Bank working paper attempts to put a number on the gains – and potential losses – for each country.By Shannon TiezziDecember 11, 2019Credit: Flickr/ Recon AsiaADVERTISEMENTSince Chinese President Xi Jinping unveiled the Belt and Road Initiative (then referred to separately as the Silk Road Economic Belt and Maritime Silk Road) in two speeches in the fall of 2013, proponents have described the massive undertaking as “win-win.” Increasing connectivity will help the entire world prosper, the argument goes. Critics sneer, however, that “win-win” means China wins twice: by exporting its labor and materials surplus abroad and by gaining strategic footholds in foreign countries.But because the BRI is a relatively new concept and few of its projects have been completed, it’s difficult to actually put a numerical value on the benefits – for China or for any other country. Without a way to quantify the costs and benefits, it’s hard to definitively answer the question of which countries …

The Belt and Road: Calculating Winners and Losers

A World Bank working paper attempts to put a number on the gains – and potential losses – for each country.By Shannon TiezziDecember 11, 2019Credit: Flickr/ Recon AsiaADVERTISEMENTSince Chinese President Xi Jinping unveiled the Belt and Road Initiative (then referred to separately as the Silk Road Economic Belt and Maritime Silk Road) in two speeches in the fall of 2013, proponents have described the massive undertaking as “win-win.” Increasing connectivity will help the entire world prosper, the argument goes. Critics sneer, however, that “win-win” means China wins twice: by exporting its labor and materials surplus abroad and by gaining strategic footholds in foreign countries.But because the BRI is a relatively new concept and few of its projects have been completed, it’s difficult to actually put a numerical value on the benefits – for China or for any other country. Without a way to quantify the costs and benefits, it’s hard to definitively answer the question of which countries …

Bilawal accuses govt of changing CPEC route to deprive Balochistan of benefits

DAWN.COMPPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari on Sunday accused the government of disregarding the people of Balochistan in charting out the route of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and keeping them deprived of their share of benefits from the project."We brought revolutionary programmes such as CPEC for you, the people of Balochistan [...] the vision of former president [Asif Ali] Zardari was for the route to begin with the most backward areas of Pakistan, namely Fata and Balochistan, but I regret to say the route was changed and instead, the project began from Lahore and Sindh," said Bilawal, addressing a PPP workers convention in Quetta."We want the people of Balochistan to benefit from CPEC but this incompetent, unqualified puppet government has failed in providing you the benefits."Only PPP is capable and it is the only party to have ever strived to deliver the benefits of a project to the residents of the area it is launched in."Citing examples…

DG Khan, Rajanpur be included in Balochistan, says Akhtar Mengal

Top StoryNews DeskDecember 16, 2019DERA GHAZI KHAN: Balochistan National Party-Mengal chief Sardar Akhtar Mengal demanded that Dera Ghazi Khan and Rajanpur be included in Balochistan.He was addressing a public gathering organised in...ShareNext Story >>>DERA GHAZI KHAN: Balochistan National Party-Mengal chief Sardar Akhtar Mengal demanded that Dera Ghazi Khan and Rajanpur be included in Balochistan.He was addressing a public gathering organised in the memory of martyrs of Koh-e-Sulaiman at Taunsa Sharif on Sunday. Mengal said that at the time of partition, Dera Ghazi Khan and Rajanpur were parts of Balochistan but later they were included in Punjab. He said that Balochistan comprises 43% of total area of Pakistan but was the smallest in terms of population.He declared that he was not supporting the government in greed for any post or ministry but was looking forward to his six-point agenda. He claimed that the abducted women from Awaran were only released after he protested o…

Berlin conference calls for humanitarian intervention in Balochistan

ANI | Updated: Dec 15, 2019 08:32 AM ISTBerlin [Germany], Dec 15 (ANI): The Baloch human rights groups gathered in Berlin recently to accentuate the overlooked plight of the people of Balochistan in an attempt to induce the international community to play a more active role in bringing an end to the miseries of the Baloch.
The conference entitled, "A one-day conference on the humanitarian challenges in Balochistan" was held at the Seminar-Mit-Spreeblick and was jointly organised by the Baloch Human Rights Council (BHRC), Baloch Human Rights Organization (BHRO) and the Human Rights Council of Balochistan (HRCB).
The organisers of the conference presented a detailed account of the prevailing humanitarian crises in Balochistan and the various challenges its people have been facing.
In his opening remarks, Qambar Malik Baloch of BHRC outlined the objectives of the conference and moderated the panel discussion. A short documentary prepared by the Baloch Human Rights Council was p…

Pakistan inciting Baloch nation to deviate them from the peaceful path of freedom struggle: BNM

(Current Balochistan)“Pakistan has been inciting Baloch nation to violence, an attempt to deviate them from the peaceful path of national struggle for freedom. But our national struggle will continue in line with the international laws and universal human values.”The central spokesperson of Baloch National Movement has condemned the abduction of Baloch women and children by the Pakistani army. They were abducted from Hazarganji area of Quetta. In reaction to these forceful disappearances, the spokesman of Baloch National Movement lambasted, “Pakistan is a country that lacks human dignity and has morphed into a violent beast. International Laws assure the protection of the unarmed people, particularly women and children in war. But when it comes to Pakistan, all international laws and ethical values lose their meaning. The continuous incidents of targeting unarmed people, women, and children reflects the reality that the existence of Pakistan has become extremely dangerous to entire hu…

Protests and awareness programs were organized on the occasion of World Human Rights Day. BNM

(Current Balochistan)Pro-independence Baloch Poltical party, Baloch National Movement spokesman said that on December 10, on the occasion of "World Human Rights Day", the party organized different programs in Balochistan and abroad. Protests were held in the UK, Germany, and the Netherlands. Apart from BNM activists, other freedom-loving Baloch and locals participated in the events. Demonstrators raised play cards, banners and posters and chanted slogans against Pakistan.The spokesperson said the biggest demonstration was held at 10 Downing Street in the London city of UK, in front of the Prime Minister's House by the Sindhi Baloch Forum. Along with party workers, BSO Azad, Baloch Human Rights Council, World Sindhi Congress workers, and locals attended it. BNM Foreign Secretary Hammal Haidar Baloch and Dr. Hidayat Bhutto of the World Sindhi Congress addressed the demonstration.Hammal Haidar Baloch said that today we have organized this program in front of the British Pri…