1. Steering Through Turbulence
  2. ExxonMobil – Close to hitting huge oil reserves in Pakistan, bigger than Kuwait’s
  3. NAYA PAKISTAN?
  4. Making ADR work for Women
  5. Women’s Rights under Family Law
  6. Shutting the Door on Refugees
  7. Water Challenges and Opportunities
  8. In Conversation with Dr. Ghulam Rasul on Hydrology
  9. In Conversation with Shafqat kakakhel: Internal Water Management Practices
  10. Come on Skipper !
  11. GUMM
  12. Annus Horibilis
  13. The Inhumanity of Pakistan’s Coal Industry
  14. Iran Nuclear Deal The U.S Withdrawal
  15. Method in the Madness
  16. Legal System Reforms
  17. Power Over Impulse
  18. Refugees and Migrants are People too
  19. PTCL – A Nonstop Journey Towards Excellence
  20. Gulgee – The Last of The Greats
  21. Patrik Hoffmann – Sonraj
  22. Pakistan’s Primordial Hindu Heritage
  23. Pakistan’s Migrant Tragedy
  24. PTCL – Fastest Growing Brand in Pakistan
  25. Keep Pakistan’s Wagon Hitched To The China Star
  26. Anique’s Chocolate Cake
  27. Selfless & Fearless – Lahore Qalandars
  28. NEWS PICKS
  29. Intellectual Property and Tourism
  30. Fitness with the Mughal
  31. REBEL WITH A CAUSE
  32. The Big Fat Lie – Cholesterol (Part-1)
  33. Mummy’s Recipes Roast Chicken & Veg
  34. ENGAGING HEADS HEARTS AND HANDS
  35. The Big Fat Lie – Cholesterol (Part-2)
  36. Q & A with Star of Parchi
  37. Addressing Sexual Abuse
  38. Q & A with EMAN ZAEEM & MEHR SAAD
  39. Pakistan’s Lost Children
  40. ENGLAND AND THE INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION
  41. STICK WITH FRIENDS AND DITCH THE ENEMIES
  42. The Phenomenon that Stephen Hawking was!
  43. In Conversation with ANUSHAY ZEESHAN
  44. Q & A with owner of District 6 – Anum Rafat
  45. Ali Rehman Khan – Naturally A Star
  46. MUNIBA`S Call for Tolerance & Justice
  47. Q&A Muniba Mazari
  48. Health Quotient (Dental health)
  49. Money for nothing, bits for free
  50. FinTech
  51. TRADING THREATS OF WAR
  52. Crisis of Civilization
  53. Child Sexual Abuse
  54. Education is the only Solution
  55. Fit for Purpose
  56. BLUE CHIP TALKS TO THE CREATOR OF TEETOO AND TANIA
  57. Mini meringue recipe
  58. NEW ANIMATED TV SERIES PAKISTANI
  59. Changing the Perception of Public Transport Motorway Express
  60. AUSTENISTAN DEBUTS WITH ELEGANCE AND ENTHUSIASM
  61. PAKISTAN’S WOMEN OF 2017
  62. THE BEAUTY IN BUSINESS
  63. PERCEPTIONS ARE ALSO REALITY
  64. Blue Chip Q/A with Atiqa Odho
  65. Five major political events of 2017
  66. WHAT DOES TRUMP’S TWEET MEAN FOR CPEC AND THE REGION
  67. THE GLOBAL ECONOMY IN 2017
  68. AFGHANISTAN GOING DOWNHILL
  69. 2017 FOR PSX – THE CLIMB AND THE DECLINE
  70. What we can learn from Ghalib
  71. QUINOA SALAD WITH THAI DRESSING
Thu, Sep 20, 2018
  1. Steering Through Turbulence
  2. ExxonMobil – Close to hitting huge oil reserves in Pakistan, bigger than Kuwait’s
  3. NAYA PAKISTAN?
  4. Making ADR work for Women
  5. Women’s Rights under Family Law
  6. Shutting the Door on Refugees
  7. Water Challenges and Opportunities
  8. In Conversation with Dr. Ghulam Rasul on Hydrology
  9. In Conversation with Shafqat kakakhel: Internal Water Management Practices
  10. Come on Skipper !
  11. GUMM
  12. Annus Horibilis
  13. The Inhumanity of Pakistan’s Coal Industry
  14. Iran Nuclear Deal The U.S Withdrawal
  15. Method in the Madness
  16. Legal System Reforms
  17. Power Over Impulse
  18. Refugees and Migrants are People too
  19. PTCL – A Nonstop Journey Towards Excellence
  20. Gulgee – The Last of The Greats
  21. Patrik Hoffmann – Sonraj
  22. Pakistan’s Primordial Hindu Heritage
  23. Pakistan’s Migrant Tragedy
  24. PTCL – Fastest Growing Brand in Pakistan
  25. Keep Pakistan’s Wagon Hitched To The China Star
  26. Anique’s Chocolate Cake
  27. Selfless & Fearless – Lahore Qalandars
  28. NEWS PICKS
  29. Intellectual Property and Tourism
  30. Fitness with the Mughal
  31. REBEL WITH A CAUSE
  32. The Big Fat Lie – Cholesterol (Part-1)
  33. Mummy’s Recipes Roast Chicken & Veg
  34. ENGAGING HEADS HEARTS AND HANDS
  35. The Big Fat Lie – Cholesterol (Part-2)
  36. Q & A with Star of Parchi
  37. Addressing Sexual Abuse
  38. Q & A with EMAN ZAEEM & MEHR SAAD
  39. Pakistan’s Lost Children
  40. ENGLAND AND THE INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION
  41. STICK WITH FRIENDS AND DITCH THE ENEMIES
  42. The Phenomenon that Stephen Hawking was!
  43. In Conversation with ANUSHAY ZEESHAN
  44. Q & A with owner of District 6 – Anum Rafat
  45. Ali Rehman Khan – Naturally A Star
  46. MUNIBA`S Call for Tolerance & Justice
  47. Q&A Muniba Mazari
  48. Health Quotient (Dental health)
  49. Money for nothing, bits for free
  50. FinTech
  51. TRADING THREATS OF WAR
  52. Crisis of Civilization
  53. Child Sexual Abuse
  54. Education is the only Solution
  55. Fit for Purpose
  56. BLUE CHIP TALKS TO THE CREATOR OF TEETOO AND TANIA
  57. Mini meringue recipe
  58. NEW ANIMATED TV SERIES PAKISTANI
  59. Changing the Perception of Public Transport Motorway Express
  60. AUSTENISTAN DEBUTS WITH ELEGANCE AND ENTHUSIASM
  61. PAKISTAN’S WOMEN OF 2017
  62. THE BEAUTY IN BUSINESS
  63. PERCEPTIONS ARE ALSO REALITY
  64. Blue Chip Q/A with Atiqa Odho
  65. Five major political events of 2017
  66. WHAT DOES TRUMP’S TWEET MEAN FOR CPEC AND THE REGION
  67. THE GLOBAL ECONOMY IN 2017
  68. AFGHANISTAN GOING DOWNHILL
  69. 2017 FOR PSX – THE CLIMB AND THE DECLINE
  70. What we can learn from Ghalib
  71. QUINOA SALAD WITH THAI DRESSING

On the website of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) the words of President Xi Jinping stand out in simplicity. He refers, as usual, to the “all-weather strategic cooperative partnership” but makes it clear he wants more. And when one considers the way the Western world is behaving at the moment and is likely to stagger for the foreseeable future, it would serve Pakistan well to move even closer to China.

Of course China is not a purring pussycat, no matter what honeyed words might be uttered by its leader, and Beijing will always seek to obtain advantage from any agreement in which China engages — but it seems that, so far, its international commercial and diplomatic arrangements appear to have worked well and to the satisfaction of its partners.

Mr. Xi wants China and Pakistan to “strengthen mutual assistance and deepen strategic cooperation” while “we should advance our shared interests and achieve common development. We should use the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor to drive our practical cooperation with focus on Gwadar Port, energy, infrastructure development and industrial cooperation so that the fruits of its development will reach both all the people in Pakistan and the people of other countries in our region.”

It is all very encouraging, but is there to be a golden age for Pakistan? Perhaps not altogether, and certainly not quickly, because Pakistan’s current economic situation is not satisfactory and will take a long time to rectify. In March 2018 the International Monetary Fund forecast that the current account deficit will soon be 4.8% of national income, some $16.6 billion, which is 83% higher than the government’s official estimate. This reflects a critical imbalance between imports and exports, but the longer term benefits of CPEC will almost certainly include amelioration of the import-export predicament, especially if such sectors as cotton production are attended to by the government in Islamabad.

On the Chinese front, relations are cordial and fruitful, but from the other side of the world the Administration of the United States appears determined to destroy whatever bilateral amiability existed in former times. President Trump’s first tweet of the year was appallingly insulting to the nation of Pakistan, and Washington’s actions since then have accelerated the decline in relations.

Later in January the State Department announced suspension of $255 million in military assistance to Pakistan, placed the country on the Special Watch List for severe violations of religious freedom and deferred $900 million in Coalition Support Funds which is money “used to reimburse coalition partners for logistical and military support to US military operations.”

In March 2018, on the other hand, India was declared to be “an incredibly important, incredibly valuable and incredibly close counter-terrorism partner of the US.” The Washington Administration’s representative noted that President Trump and Prime Minister Modi had “held a very, very productive series of meetings . . . and in response to that set of meetings, the US government and the Indian government have forged ahead to create a really powerful partnership.” Pakistan has been given the message, and would be well-advised to cut its losses to far as the US is concerned.

One major difference between the international policies of the US and the People’s Republic of China is in how they engage with Africa. As Forbes observed, “In December 2015, President Xi Jinping ushered in a new era of ‘real win-win cooperation’ between China and Africa. This strategy aims to create mutual prosperity, allowing investors to ‘do good while doing right.’ China has backed this proposal up with a commitment of $60 billion of new investment in major capital projects, which are tied to developing local economic capacity.”

Washington has a decidedly different approach, and is building up militarily in Africa, to the extent of having formed ‘Africom’, the US Africa Command (with its headquarters, astonishingly, in Stuttgart, in Germany).

The Pentagon now has some 7,000 troops permanently positioned in fifty of Africa’s 54 countries (but nobody knows, not even the US Congress, how many others move in and out on temporary deployments). According to Africom, it maintains “14 enduring locations which give the United States options in the event of crisis and enable partner capacity building.” There are 20 “Contingency Locations” with the purpose of “support[ing] partners, countering threats, and protecting US interests in East, North, and West Africa.”

The difference between the policies of China and the United States are manifest: on the one hand Beijing “aims to create mutual prosperity” while Washington, in the words of Africom’s commander, General Waldhauser, in testimony to a Congressional Committee in March 2018, has the policy of “forward staging of forces to provide operational flexibility and timely response to crises involving US personnel or interests . . .”

And so it is in Asia. The US has no interest in assisting Pakistan either economically or in the international political sphere. Washington is out for what it can get, which is inherent in the oft-repeated “America First.” It would be ingenuous to imagine that China does not give priority to its own economic interests, but it does exhibit loyalty to partners, rather than using them and then tearing them up.

Pakistan should keep its wagon hitched to the China Star.

By Brian Cloughley

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