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Showing posts from February 21, 2018

FROM DIGITAL TACTICS TO DIGITAL STRATEGIES: PRACTICING DIGITAL PD FROM DIGITAL TACTICS TO DIGITAL STRATEGIES: PRACTICING DIGITAL PD Feb 14, 2018   by Corneliu Bjola ,  Ilan Manor On the 1st and 2nd of February 2017, the Oxford Digital Diplomacy Research Group (DigDiploRox) took part in The Hague Digital Diplomacy Camp. Organized by the Dutch Foreign Ministry, the Camp sought to explore the continuous influence of digitalization on diplomacy. The Camp brought together scholars and practitioners of diplomacy alongside representatives of social media companies, representatives from the technology sector, non-state actors, entrepreneurs and thought leaders. During the Camp, the Oxford Group held an open discussion on the practice of digital public diplomacy. The discussion emphasized MFAs’ need to transition from digital tactics to digital strategies. Digital tactics may be understood as diplomats’ attempts to wield digital tools so as to reach large onli

Airborne Silk Road helps boost Zhengzhou's fortunes 0  Comment(s) Print   E- mail China Daily, February 22, 2018 Adjust font size:  More than 2,000 years ago, the ancient Silk Road unlocked the potential of economic exchanges and trade via camel with distant countries. Nowadays, air transportation is playing a key role. Cargo is unloaded from a charter flight of Cargolux Airlines International in Zhengzhou Airport, Henan province. [Photo/China Daily] A new "Silk Road in the air" is booming in Zhengzhou, capital of Central China's Henan province, linking it all the way to Luxembourg . This international flight route between the two cities is helping boost global trade. Statistics show total cargo shipments in and out of Zhengzhou Airport likely reached 500,000 metric tons in 2017, and cargo shipments to and from Luxembourg alone from Zhengzhou were expected to constitute 150,000 tons of this, or nearly a third of the total cargo shipments , said Eric Erbac

Mapping the Silk Road: State propaganda and the race against history 22 February 2018 08:55   David Bandurski 9 min read There has been a burst of commentary over the past few days about the overtly  racist Africa skit that aired during the official Spring Festival Gala last week on China Central Television . I won’t recap the arguments here, except to note that we don’t need to read  intent  to appreciate the very real racist  impact  of a Chinese actress wearing blackface and butt padding to portray an African mother figure. Despite  this well-intentioned argument , the  link between racism and intentionality  is a commonplace misunderstanding of the complex dynamics of racism. If we do look at the  intent  behind the Africa skit, however, it’s not hard to make out that the purpose of Chinese leaders in airing the segment was to promote China’s strategic relationship with Africa through its Belt and Road Initiative. At the end of the skit, Lou Naiming, the Chin

Will CPEC alter Balochistan? Mushtaq Rajpar February 22, 2018 Listen No study can tell us the economic value of the natural gas that has been produced in Dera Bugti since the 1950s and fuelled the rest of Pakistan’s economy. We can say with certainty that our country would not have attained sufficiently high growth rates without Balochistan’s natural gas. However, the possession and discovery of natural gas hasn’t change the fate of Dera Bugti, let alone Balochistan. Will CPEC change the socioeconomic structure of a traditional society like Balochistan? This is a question that must be examined. Will there be a repeat of what happened after natural gas was excavated in Dera Bugti? Will the rest of the country reap the benefits while Balochistan plunges into darkness and thousands of people are displaced? Will a natural resource become a curse instead of a blessing for the people of the province? There are several examples of a similar natur

These 3D art images from Gwadar are mesmerising By Shahab Umer   Wednesday Feb 21, 2018   For the last few years Gwadar, the southwestern port city of Pakistan, and its untouched shorelines have been in the news for the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, a multi-billion dollar project. But this past week, it made headlines for a different reason: its artwork. Three friends — Zubair Mukhtar, Hussain Zeb and Bahar Ali — turned Gwadar’s beaches into sprawling canvases. A short distance from their home in Pasni, the trio sculpted moist sand into optical illusions and 3D art. Making use of the contrast in light, they created work that appeared almost life-like when photographed or observed from a distance. Sand art is a hobby for the boys. As a ritual, they venture down the same beach every afternoon, with images of objects to render in sand. The objects are simple: a glass, a bucket, a pen. But the final product is always remarkable as we

CPEC is silent on Pakistan’s agriculture, says PARC chairman Staff Report FEBRUARY 22, 2018 ISLAMABAD :  Pakistan Agriculture Research Council (PARC) chairman Dr. Yousaf Zafar said on Wednesday that modern technology had a pivotal role in the future of agriculture sector in Pakistan. However, a lack of awareness and proper understanding of new technological advancements in this field continues to impede adoption. Therefore, the role of the media, both electronic and print, was even more important in terms of carrying a pro-technology message to the farmers, policy makers and the citizenry. The PARC chairman expressed these views while addressing journalists at a workshop organised by the CropLife Pakistan. The main objective of the workshop was to build the capacity of mainstream media in understanding and articulating technological advancements in agriculture together with the potential benefit that could be gained from their adoption. “Despite much h

Taking a cue from varsities, madrasas also offering Chinese language course Arshad Yousafzai February 22, 2018 Listen Expecting to land a lucrative job in the ongoing Chinese projects, especially under the umbrella of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), thousands of people, especially students, have become interested in learning the Chinese language, and for this purpose, a large number of centres have popped up across Karachi -- in public and private universities, religious seminaries and small coaching centres. Even the NED University of Engineering and Technology (NED) has made learning Chinese mandatory for all first-year students, and Karachi University had established a Confucius institute in 2012, which has been playing a significant role in promoting Mandarin, besides offering admissions in cultural studies to local students. First Chinese institute In 2004, the first Confucius institute was established in Pakistan at the National Univ

Ahsan, Chinese Ambassador discuss bilateral ties, CPEC   PARVEZ JABRI   FEB 22ND, 2018   0  VIEWS: 20 ISLAMABAD: China’s ambassador to Pakistan Yao Jing Wednesday called on Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal and discussed different aspects of bilateral relations. They discussed Pakistan China Economic Corridor (CPEC) and matters related to cooperation in various fields. The minister said it was our national responsibility to provide security to Chinese Citizens contributing in the development of the country. He said that CPEC would ensure economic prosperity in the region. CPEC was the symbol of fraternal ties between the two countries, he added. The Chinese ambassador expressed his interest for providing solar energy in schools of Balochistan

Investment from multiple sources good for Pakistan By Yu Ning Source:Global Times Published: 2018/2/21 22:58:39 1 Pakistan-based newspaper The Express Tribune reported Sunday that Pakistan, under Chinese pressure, had turned down a cheaper loan offer from Japan for infrastructure projects that are part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). According to the report, Pakistan earlier also refused a Japanese offer to invest in a tunnel program under the CPEC as "China resisted the move."  The report, sourcing an unnamed Pakistani official, is unconvincing. The economic corridor is not a bilateral project, but an open initiative. China has repeatedly emphasized that it invites and welcomes more countries to join in. Under the CPEC, China and Qatar have jointly developed the Port Qasim plant, a coal-fired power plant at Port Qasim in Karachi.   The CPEC, a flagship project of the China-proposed  Belt and Road  initiative, is aimed at enhancing interconnectivity between

17,000MW to be generated under CPEC energy projects, Senate told Pakistan by  Muhammad Irfan  | Published on February 21, 2018 (Edited February 21, 2018)  🔗 ISLAMABAD – The Senate was informed on Wednesday that energy projects with a total capacity of 17,045 megawatts will be taken up under China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). This was stated by the Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms Ahsan Iqbal while responding to a question during Questions Hour in the Upper House. He said that projects with a capacity of 1,110 megawatts based on research and scientific analysis are on the advanced staged. The minister said that Chinese experts are undertaking studies to fund hydel projects on River Indus like Diamer-Bhasha, Bunji, and other projects. He said that in principal China has agreed to fund hydel projects on River Indus. To a question, Ahsan Iqbal said that a project with a capacity of 300 megawatts has been approved in Gwada

Amidst CPEC push, Pakistan makes China’s Mandarin an official language  0 BY  BRINKWIRE  ON FEBRUARY 22, 2018 NEWS The Pakistani senate has passed a motion declaring Mandarin as one of the official languages of the country, in a bid to enhance communication in projects like the big-bang China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). The move also points to Pakistan increasingly slipping out of America’s ambit and getting closer to China. The move, which is reportedly aimed at helping people connected with CPEC to communicate easily, brings India’s two hostile neighbours Pakistan and China closer together. According to the motion moved in Pakistan’s senate, the step was necessary in view of the country’s ties with China and it would help people connected with CPEC to communicate easily. In Pakistan, Punjabi is widely spoken in Punjab province while Pashto and many other native languages are spoken in other provinces. These have not been declared official l

India & Iran Might Soon Have an Answer to China’s CPEC TheQuint KANWALJEET SINGH 04H 00M AGO 6 min read India and Iran are moving slowly and steadily to overcome all hurdles to convert the International North-South Transport Corridor ( INSTC ) into a bigger economic corridor with better prospects and potential than the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). President Rouhani, on his first state visit to New Delhi after assuming office in 2013, held talks with PM Modi, and the two sides moved forward on several contentious issues stuck for decades due to sanctions and now because of pressure from Washington. Also Read:  India Hosts Iran’s Rouhani With an Eye to Win Big in West Asia    Pitch for Chabahar to Become Main Point for Economic Corridor Among the agreements signed, the most important was the lease contract for one berth, multipurpose and container terminal at Shahid Beheshti Port-Phase 1 of Chabahar for 18 months, between

Pakistani Lawmaker Denies China Talking to Separatists in Baluchistan Posted by  EP Today Team Written by: EP Today Team on February 21, 2018. There are no talks between China and the separatists from Pakistan’s Baluchistan province regarding the protection of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), a senator from the province told VOA. First reported by  The Financial Times , several newspapers in Pakistan said that China has been quietly holding talks with Baluch (natives of Baluchistan) militants for more than five years in an effort to protect the $60 billion worth of infrastructure projects it is financing. CPEC is a Chinese-funded project. Upon completion, this 3,000-km-long project will connect China with Pakistan through rail, road pipelines and an optical cable fiber network. Through CPEC, China will gain access to the Arabian Sea. Pakistan’s Baluchistan province is at the heart of the CPEC because the project stretches between China’s Xinjiang

Reports of India’s demise as a regional power are greatly exaggerated DHRUVA JAISHANKAR  20 February, 2018 Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping in 2014 in New Delhi. Photo by Arvind Yadav/Hindustan Times via Getty Images There is a tendency to exaggerate China’s footprint in India’s immediate neighbourhood. A great churning appears to be underway within India’s smaller neighbours. In Bangladesh, opposition leader Khaleda Zia has been  sentenced  to five years in jail for corruption. In Sri Lanka, former President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s party scored a  big victory  in local elections. In Nepal, K.P. Oli – who has a  difficult history  with India – has  returned  as prime minister. In the Maldives, a  state of emergency  has been declared by an embattled president Abdulla Yameen. In Bhutan, local elections are  around the corner , amid calls from  some politicians  to decrease the country’s dependence on India. The Indian press – print, television, and on