Archive for December, 2010

December 31, 2010

Pak engineers working in Hydel projects under going training in China

An eight-member delegation of senior civil engineers belonging to various hydel projects in Pakistan called on Pakistan’s Ambassador to China, Masood Khan on Friday. The delegation is on a 13-day visit to China to attend the first training programme under an MoU between WAPDA and China Three Gorges Project Cooperation (CTGPC) signed in February 2009. Talking to the delegation, Ambassador Masood Khan said that their training would be extremely beneficial for the country to overcome the energy proglem.

He said that hydel power is the cheapest mean of generating energy and Pakistan is rich of these resources.

Ambassador Khan also briefed about various infrastructure projects undertaken in Pakistan with Chinese assistance.

Participants observed that this training programme, supported by the CTGPC,is highly beneficial for the Pakistani engineers. They said it has enhanced their professional skills at the various hydel projects on which they are working.

The delegates informed the Ambassador that they were given lectures on 12 specific topics during this period and taken to the sites of Three Gorges and Gezhouba Dams. They said the lectures and discussions with Chinese experts helped them learn more about their fields of expertise.

The delegation comprised Mr. Arshad Ali (High Head Hydro Project), Mr.Anzar Hussain (Neelam Jehlum Hydro Power Company), Mr. Shahid Mehmood (Dam Safety Organization), Mr. Syed Talib Hussain (Ghazi Brotha Hydro Planning), Mr. Muhammad

Arshad (Central Design Ocrganization Water), Mr. Muhammad Arshad Pervaz (Dam Safety Organization), Mr. Fasihullah Paracha (Peshawar Electric Supply Company)and Mr. Muhammad Abdul Qayyum Aziz (Neelam Jehlum Hydro Planning Company).

via Associated Press Of Pakistan ( Pakistan’s Premier NEWS Agency ) – Pak engineers working in Hydel projects under going training in China.

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December 30, 2010

Pak-China Friendship Celebrations in AJK

The year 2011 is to be celebrated in AJK as Pak-China Friendship Year with yearlong enthusiastic events involving all tiers of social strata, particularly youth force, academics, business community and government officials, holding of exhibitions, Pak-China seminars, sports and public receptions.

The 60th anniversary of Pakistan-China diplomatic ties falls on May 21, 2011. Kashmiris take pride in the world-model relations between the peoples and governments of Pakistan and China since their founding day on May 21, 1951.

The special anniversary events include holding of business conferences, open shows/exhibitions of arts and crafts from district level upwards.

China upholds the justness of Kashmir cause and stresses resolution of the Kashmir dispute via peaceful negotiations between Pakistan and India. In his recent India visit the Chinese Prime Minister Mr Wen Jiabao while in New Delhi had reiterated for settlement of this dispute between Pakistan and India.

China has already undertaken in AJK development projects worth trillions of dollars like reconstruction of Muzaffarabad Capital City, 969-megawatt Neelum-Jhelum hydropower project and many others. The Kashmiri youth are much interested in acquiring higher professional and technical education in China.

Beijing accords staple visit visas to Kashmiris from India-held Kashmir. But New Delhi frowns over this exclusive facility to Kashmiris, choosing it as a cause of diplomatic row between the two countries.

via Kashmir Watch :: In-depth coverage on Kashmir conflict.

December 29, 2010

Pakistan To Deploy Fiber Optic Cable to Connect with China

 

 

Government said that it will deploy cross border Optical Fibre Cable (OFC) system at a cost of Rs 3.7 billion between Pakistan and China for security of information, reported Business Recorder, quoting official sources.

Paper said that the need of this cross-country fiber optic cable grew after security concerns from Pakistan and China, who fear the possibility of India monitoring the communication activities, through already active undersea cables.

The project was deliberated at a recent meeting of the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) under the chairmanship Finance Minister Dr. Abdul Hafeez Shakih.

The project consists of laying 820 km of Optical Fibre Cable (OFC) along the Karakaram Highway, from Rawalpindi to Khunjrab Pass (Chinese border via Mansehra, Chilas, Danyore (Gligit), Karimabad and Sust).

At present, Pakistan’s international connectivity with the world is through undersea cables SEA-ME-WE 3&4 and IMEWE, and Pakistan is connected through spurs only.

“This dependency is not only a risk but also entails security concerns. The voice/data and internet traffic can be monitored and disturbed easily by India,” sources said. To divert such a threat, sources said, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed with China in April 2007 for the establishment of a secure international OFC link between China and Pakistan along Karakaram Highway which is being widened by China Road and Bridge Company.

Through this project, a link will be created between Pakistan and Trans-Asia Europe (TAE) cable in China, which would enable both Pakistan and China to have alternative routes for their international telecom traffic, sources added.

Successful implementation of the project would provide Pakistan with a direct telecom access to China and the Central Asian States. Thus, development of telecom infrastructure will facilitate trade with these countries and would also promote tourism in the region, sources quoted Ministry of Information Technology as commenting on the project.

Apart from security assurance, the project is expected to generate revenue, approximately Rs 1.5 billion in the first three years and, in the fourth year, the financial dividends are likely to grow.

The project would be funded within Public Sector Development Program (PSDP) and out of a Chinese soft loan. The project also involves Rs 3.2 billion foreign exchange component (FEC).

via Pakistan To Deploy Fiber Optic Cable to Connect with China – ProPakistani.

December 28, 2010

Pakistan to launch satellite from China

Pakistan will launch its first indigenously developed communications satellite on August 14, 2011, from a facility in China and its life span will be 15 years.According to sources in Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (Suparco), the satellite would be launched at a longitude of 38 degrees in geostationary orbit on the equatorial plane at an altitude of 36,000km above the earth’s surface.Paksat-1R will carry a communications payload to facilitate the introduction of a range of new services, including broadband internet, digital TV distribution/broadcasting, remote/rural telephony, emergency communications, tele-education and tele-medicine.
The contract for Pakistan Communication Satellite (Paksat-1R) was signed between Suparco and China Great Wall Industry Corporation (CGWIC), a Chinese firm, on October 15, 2008, official sources maintained.
Work on the execution of the contract began soon after and is progressing as scheduled, the sources said, adding that the contract involved various other projects, including infrastructure and therefore it was difficult to invest an exact cost on the satellite itself.
Official sources further said that at least two new satellites Paksat-1R and Pakistan Remote Sensing Satellite (PRSS) – would be launched in the near future.
The satellites have been developed with technical and financial assistance of China.
At present, Pakistan has a communications satellite, Paksat-1, in orbit, providing coverage across Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Central Asia and the South Asian subcontinent.
It is being used by TV broadcasters, telecom companies, data and broadband internet service providers and government organizations.
Paksat-1R will replace Paksat-1, a leased satellite, to ensure continuity of service.
In 1990s, Pakistan also operated a small satellite, Badr-A, in low earth orbit. however, the country’s modest space programme has been  oriented towards remote sensing applications.
Pakistan and China have agreed to enhance strategic coordination, advance pragmatic cooperation and work together to meet challenges in pursuit of common development.
In a joint statement issued after conclusion of Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao’s visit to Pakistan, they declared 2011 as the “Year of China-Pakistan Friendship”, and decided to hold a series of activities in the political, economic, trade, military, cultural, sporting and education fields, to warmly celebrate the 60th anniversary of the establishment of Pak-China diplomatic relations.
They decided to further implement the Framework Agreement between SUPARCO and China National Space Administration (CNSA) on Deepening Cooperation in Space Science and Technology.
In this context, they expressed satisfaction on their joint collaboration in fabrication and launching of satellites.
When contacted, Paksat GM  Col. Muhammad Latif confirmed that Pakistan’s new communication satellite would be launched in 2011.

Associated Press Of Pakistan ( Pakistan’s Premier NEWS Agency ) – Pakistan to launch satellite in 2011.

December 28, 2010

Cementing a strategic partnership

Dr Maleeha Lodhi. The writer is a former envoy to the US and the UK, and a former editor of The News.

The contrast could not have been more telling. China’s prime minister, Wen Jiabao, praised Pakistan’s efforts to fight terrorism, against the backdrop of unremitting Western and Indian criticism that Pakistan had not done enough to address the threat.

In a speech to the joint session of parliament at the conclusion of his three-day visit to Islamabad, the Chinese premier declared: “Pakistan has given great sacrifices and made great efforts in the fight against terrorism.” “This is a well-known fact,” he said, and pointedly urged the international community to respect and “support Pakistan’s efforts.”

The political unanimity demonstrated in parliament and the unprecedented reception accorded to Wen Jiabao reflected the firm national consensus that undergirds Sino-Pakistani relations. The strategic quality of the relationship derives from the support it enjoys from the people of the two countries. This sets it in sharp relief to Islamabad’s ties with other big powers, which are valued more by the leadership than by the public.

The significance of Prime Minister Wen’s remarks to parliament should be seen in the background of escalating US demands on Pakistan to help NATO’s faltering war effort in Afghanistan. The expression of political solidarity by the Chinese leader was aimed at bolstering Pakistan’s position in the face of these pressures, and signal that Beijing, for one, would stand firmly by Pakistan through what Premier Wen described as “tough times.”

The joint communique contained a meaningful reference to the “respect” of the Chinese leader for the “Counter-terrorism strategy constituted and implemented by Pakistan in [the] light of its own national conditions.” For the Pakistani public Wen’s repeatedly voiced commitment to “stand together” with Pakistan was a reassuring sign that Islamabad had options in its foreign policy despite the US-centric approach pursued in recent years.

The Pakistani leadership, for its part, chose its words carefully to match Chinese gestures and exchange statements of mutual appreciation. “China,” said Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani, was Pakistan’s “most trusted and reliable friend.” Opposition leader Chaudhri Nisar Ali Khan expressed similar sentiments.

Prime Minister Wen’s visit did more than provide much-needed diplomatic support for an ally under pressure that served to raise the nation’s morale. It sought to elevate the partnership by the promise of greater coordination at the global level. This is what was meant by the emphasis placed by the Chinese visitor in his public statements about the Sino-Pakistani relationship having evolved from the bilateral to the regional and global plane.

The seven-page joint statement referred to the fact that “China-Pakistan relations have gone beyond bilateral dimensions and acquired broader regional and international ramifications.” It also contained the agreement to establish a leadership level annual consultation mechanism. This reflected the priority Beijing attaches to Pakistan in its global agenda and suggested that consultations will take place across the board on issues of mutual concern.

This affirmation of a global partnership has added significance in the context of the shifting international balance of power marked by China’s growing economic and political clout. For Islamabad this holds out the prospect of coordinating more strategically with a diplomatically assertive Beijing at multilateral forums to advance mutual goals, including UN Security Council reform, on which the two countries have “common interests,” as Wen acknowledged in his speech.

The visit also aimed at diversifying the bilateral relationship from the traditional focus on defence and military cooperation towards greater economic, trade and investment ties, including help for Pakistan’s critical infrastructure needs.

The message to Islamabad – both in private and public – was that China would help Pakistan develop its inherent economic strength while stressing the need for it to chart its own development path rather than rely on “outside” prescriptions.

The Chinese offer to help in the energy sector was recognition of Pakistan’s pressing priority. An energy cooperation mechanism is to be established to advance cooperation in conventional, renewable and civil nuclear energy. This will include Chinese assistance to upgrade Pakistan’s national electricity grid and undertake large hydroelectric projects, as well as continue collaboration on the Chashma III and IV civilian nuclear projects.

Agreements and MOUs covering other projects and deals worth an estimated $30 billion were signed during the visit. They included $10 billion of trade deals. Current bilateral trade remains modest at $7 billion but is expected to more than double in five years due to robust annual growth and plans to further liberalise and expand trade under existing Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) on goods, investment and services. Beijing’s assent to give Pakistan unilateral concessions on 286 products is designed to provide market access to boost Pakistani exports.

The emphasis in future trade and infrastructure cooperation on promoting development in border areas and establishing trans-border economic zones reflected the common strategic vision of the two countries to link China’s western region to Pakistan’s southern coast and to commercially bind Pakistan more closely to China’s expanding economy. Indeed, with the signing of the new agreements, Pakistan emerged as the top destination for Chinese investment in South Asia.

In the military realm, greater collaboration is envisaged on a number of projects to help enhance Pakistan’s own defence capabilities, as well as increase cooperation in joint production and Research and Development. While the joint communique is deliberately silent on ongoing and future projects, cooperation involving all three armed services will continue as the Pakistan military comes to increasingly count on Chinese equipment and defence technology.

The emphasis in the joint communique on maritime security is expected to chart a new area of cooperation. Expanded cooperation will also include high-tech areas as well as space sciences and technology, for which a framework agreement is already in place.

The elaborate roadmap of enhanced cooperation should help to give an already robust relationship a new strategic direction in the context of regional and global transformations underway. They include realignments being driven by the intensifying strategic power play among the world’s big powers, amid growing indications of an evolving US strategy to contain China’s rise.

President Barack Obama’s recent tour of Asia served to confirm that Washington was now embarked on implementing this strategy. The nature of this tour – to India, Indonesia, South Korea and Japan – and policy pronouncements, such as the US offer to “mediate” ocean border disputes in South-east Asia, its stance on the turbulence in North-east Asia and on the currency dispute with Beijing, are all signs of a more overt policy to contain China.

Obama’s visit to India indicated a renewed US strategic tilt towards Delhi as part of the effort to build India as a counterweight to China. Not only did the American president endorse India’s bid for permanent membership of the UN Security Council, he also pledged to support India’s membership of four multilateral export-control regimes, including the Nuclear Suppliers Group and ease controls on high-tech exports to India. Islamabad saw each of these moves as further enlarging the inequality of US treatment of India and Pakistan on the nuclear issue.

Together with other developments these have been viewed by Pakistan as impacting negatively on its national interests. These perceptions shaped deliberations at the recent meeting of the National Command Authority chaired by the prime minister. A statement issued at its conclusion reiterated Pakistan’s concern over policies and trends of “selectivity and discrimination in strategic export control regimes” and signal opposition to any effort to undermine its “strategic deterrence” capability.

From this perspective, the rejection by Prime Minister Wen in private discussions and in his parliament speech of “double standards” in international relations was perceived by Islamabad to enhance prospects of evolving a joint position with Beijing on such issues in key multilateral forums.

In sum, Premier Wen’s visit not only cemented strategic ties but drew the two countries even closer together to manage common challenges and the ramifications of great-power manoeuvres to adjust to a world of shifting global power.

Cementing a strategic partnership.

December 27, 2010

Can Pak adapt China’s dev strategy?

If we can we will be n a very high.If we don’t it will not be the President’s responsibility for he gave the wherewithal to the implementers and if they are found wanting Pakistan’s and the President’s efforts would be in vain. What did china do to get here? It may sound simple but in fact it requires people of high stature to do the needful and to give willingly to the nation and to the poor of that nation. The strategy was simple. Three simple ideas from the Deng regime onwards have been first a strategy for growth second a strategy for alleviating poverty and thirdly to keep the party in power through sheer good governance. The three ideas may sound simple but it requires a conceptuality that is falsely missing. The discipline and the ability to work for goals that was and is seldom seen. The USA borrowed heavily from them during the crisis. Hilary Clinton was there and in negotiations when the Pakistani delegation was also there. A day to day account was published in the local press. So we were also kept abreast of the actual happenings and it was clear that the Chinese economy was in no problem.

Pakistan has sought a number of interventions from them but I will be dealing with the agricultural side and especially the soft side of things. I am not particularly enamored by technology that is hard-machines have never been my strength, for there is a lot of leeway in the implementation. The real trick is to develop a system of doing things that can be cheap and consistent, in other words substitute the cheapest system of manufacture for a costly system. China’s dynamism and the turmoil that is created as a result will never be understood by stagnant minds. They will also never understand that the discipline that is inculcated is by the superior behavior of the leaders of China. A China strategy is not about plans alone it is about changing what is considered inevitable and ringing it in to the service of the country.

What makes the Chinese culture important is that the bureaucracy dare not make it difficult for those that are involved in the development of the country and whose role is critical for china ensuring a world role. Where other countries were dithering because of global recession China decide to do things its own way and to create demand they asked the manufacturers to cut the price by one third and put in the remaining one third and asked the rural population to buy the goods at one third the price. Who could resist so a consumer society was created so that the quality of living would improve and the rural people would have the same conveniences as the urbanites. Secondly to make sure the demand for the manufactured goods continued.

That China has turned agriculture on its head is definitely within the purview of and known to the President. The scale of that change is not within any one’s grasp and the midgets like me and others are merely hangers on trying to understand what is going on and trying to imitate the China effort. That imitation is not possible unless that amount of discipline is brought in. Discipline is not a function that can be brought in overnight and not one that is possible in a country where exceptions rule. China has decided that low aim is crime and it wants to be part of a one world strategy. USA and the west cannot do without it. Some of the areas where collaboration with china is on is in the filed of cotton, rice, sugar cane and in each of these commodities china has done excellently. It follows from the critical mass of hard working people involved in agriculture. We have not even started to look at the critical mass of human resources that may be needed. Further the ability not to interfere in the economic effort was not entirely unexpected. With the size of China in perspective how and who can afford to interfere?

Come to Pakistan and we see why we are where we are? Intrigue and backbiting is the order of the day. The same political party will have various kinds of mavericks whether it is the Nawaz, or the Q-league or the current party in power there is a growing apprehension that all is not well. Where as democracy invites and encourages debate and dialogue it does not debate individuals but issues. Now that is difficult given that we have all our lives abused and hated people and not what they stand for. Issues have never been important to us and on can see the amazing amount of abuse heaped on people, in the print and in the electronic media. The result is all too obvious. Every one is brought a peg or two down and we relish this. We relish it because it some how elevates our own image of ourselves. One of the surest ways to remain sane in Pakistan is to abuse oneself roundly every morning for two or three minutes [you would be astonished to know how many abuses one can narrate in that short period of time]. It was in former East Pakistan that I came to understand the virtues of Punjabi and one of those was the ability even for the Bengali to abuse so roundly and smoothly Punjabis.

In real economic terms the institutional arrangements have become obsolete. In agriculture the economist is defunct and more involved in ‘kamingies’ then one can ever imagine. The projects approved are sat on unless there palms are somehow greased. The delays then take place in the parent ministry. The China based projects that were approved by the last Chairman have run foul of the existing personal and so much so that the project having the directions of the countries top executive goes missing or is willfully put in the cold storage. Things are not allowed to move and since the chain of checking corruption has to go corrupt itself what can be done. One can bang ones head against the wall the head is likely to break down. Should they be taken to task? The funniest aspect came when a section officer on behest of the secretary roughed up a direction that was linked to the China project.

In cotton, in rice, in wheat and in sugar cane the impact was different. The Chinese technology that was adapted by us was successful in some areas and in some have to be brought in for the local people should also improve their livelihood. So in wheat we decided that we can use the Chinese technology bit use our own sources of supply of the seed was ensured. In cotton there has been major breakthrough and that will mean great guns for the farmers and for the entire textile industry. With yield nearly four times what our cotton breeders are promising to the farmer’s one can understand the despondency on the farmers face. The present scenario that is coming will be difficult unless we try and row with the current currents. The pun is meant to be. Similarly in rice the order of the day is yields of coarse varieties going to 150 to 170 maunds per acre or 15 to 17 tons per hectare. The challenge is to go headlong. The difficulty is in the scale of things. Discipline vs. indiscipline and the logical aspect is that it must be resolved immediately. The difficulty is in the rogue systems misrepresentation.

Can we then go ahead? Why not? Can’t life be made more meaning full and useful in an equitable manner. China’s great effort has been in the reduction of poverty and in achieving that it has earned the respect of the most cynical of world’s institutions. The one colossal difference between the two countries is in terms of intangibles and the ability to improve these intangibles requires that the utmost attention be paid to the development of character. That building character take more than aping any culture has to be not only understood but also meaningfully followed and the terms of creation and execution of elements is a function that was strongly in our midst at independence time but is sadly missing these days. Is it because the greedy are unable to handle their abilities of selfishness? Pakistan will have to do much better if development efforts have to be commensurate with the wishes of the two countries under discussion. The greatest asset that Pakistan needs to have is the intellect of its people. The received wisdom from elsewhere has to be adapted to our thinking causality. Are we ready?

Can Pak adapt China’s dev strategy?

December 26, 2010

China over USA

For Pakistan, Premier Wen Jiabao’s visit was like a whole gas cylinder of fresh air to a patient gasping for breath. The tone of the visit was refreshingly different from the awesome dirge of our so-called allies to do more, and its substance removed any doubts that the logical strategic partner for Pakistan is its friendly neighbour China and not the global bully USA. Clearly, there is a need for some basic realignment of our foreign policy and working more closely with China, building upon the multi-faceted, mutually beneficial and durable relationship. There is one problem though. Pakistan’s governing elite, infiltrated and corrupted by the sole superpower and its associated interests, could possibly drag its feet rather than take this leap that promises a bright future for not only Pakistan but the entire region. It is important to ensure that the petty personal interests of our decision-makers do not create any hurdles in the immediate deepening of this time-tested friendship.
While it is obvious that a reorientation in favour of a strategic partnership with China would benefit Pakistan and its people, it might not be that easy. For after all, the Chinese hand for friendship has remained extended all these years, even as our leaders were busy running after their arrogant imperial masters with a little carrot and a big stick. Premier Wen Jiabao’s visit has brought to the fore the clear difference between friendship and fraud in the name of friendship. His unqualified support for Pakistan, as a responsible and important country of the region, contrasts sharply with the US doubletalk consistently raising doubts about the role Pakistan is playing in the region. The agreements and MOUs worth $25 billion signed between the two countries promise the much needed development that Pakistan needs as compared to the manipulative aid and loans that are designed to push the interests and agendas of the donors and do little for the country they are supposed to help.
Pakistan has been consistently short-changed by its US-led allies, pursuing their short-sighted and narrowly defined interests in the region with no concern for how their policies affect the country and its people. Their tight-fisted injections of bilateral aid and loans through the international financial institutions they control are designed to make Pakistan more dependent on them and hence give them more leverage to arm-twist it. They expect Pakistan to fight their wars like a mercenary on meagre wages and have no qualms about weakening its position in the neighbourhood. After adopting India, they are actively propelling the unscrupulous regional bully to the status of a regional power. The leaders of our so-called allies do not miss an opportunity to badmouth and warn Pakistan, while on their friendly visits to India. There is reason to believe that they are facilitating Indian missions in Afghanistan to foment trouble in Balochistan and FATA.
Of course, such a strategically important country could not be treated so shoddily without the complicity of those in charge of our destiny. This tendency on part of our governing elite to act as puppets in the hands of their imperial masters is a chronic condition and the biggest hurdle in the formulation of a national perspective on development, economy, foreign policy and practically everything under the sun. Beholden to their dubious progress founded on acquisition of resources of others, and exploitation, oppression and murder of people, they continue to colonise on various fraudulent pretexts, while our decision-makers listen to their dishonest analyses of our problems as if hypnotised, and implement the cunning remedies they offer, actually their tools of enslavement, as if they were divinely ordained. Pakistani decision-makers are the other side of the perverse equation.
With the contrast so stark, and the difference so obvious, why should it be so difficult for our leaders to disengage from the suffocating embrace of an unscrupulous ally to shake the hands of a genuine friend? Weaned on subservience, dependence and commissions, and with their political, financial and cultural orientation so intrinsically tied up with their western masters, it is going to be a bit of an effort for our governing elite to embark upon this new path that could bring independence, peace, prosperity and dignity to the Pakistani nation. It is an effort that they’ll have to make though, even in face of scary withdrawal symptoms that are likely to accompany this major policy shift. Our US-led allies are bound to try their best to thwart closer cooperation between Pakistan and China on regional and international issues. An instalment of the Coalition Support Fund stuck for months has been released to make the carrot look bigger. They are already speaking with a softer tone. They are bound to unleash financial pressure if such trickery doesn’t work. The Pakistani leadership must not fall into their trap, and focus on strengthening its relationship with China.
It is clear that some choices will have to be made, as a close strategic partnership between Pakistan and China does not figure in the script written for the region by the international establishment of western governments, the international financial institutions and the corporations they serve. The script aims to isolate China in its own neighbourhood, and a strategic partnership with Pakistan could upset these plans. Considering that Pakistan has no place in the script of the international establishment, or is accommodated as a weak denuclearised client state at best, it makes sense for us to counter it as well. And this is the understanding that must underpin the reorientation of our policy.
We must see through the smokescreen of an alliance that aims at cutting us down to size eventually after using us for whatever tactical purposes, and developing a foothold in the country to engineer instability and control and direct local politics. Our decision-makers will have to overcome their colonial hangover and make a clearheaded assessment of our national priorities. It is not that difficult in the present situation to understand who our friend is and who are the wolves pretending to be grandma. The time for the policy shift is now and that might involve drilling some sense and responsibility in our leaders, and in case they refuse to change their slavish ways, to change them and bring in those who understand their responsibilities and put the national interest above their petty personal gains.

China over USA | Pakistan | News | Newspaper | Daily | English | Online.

December 26, 2010

Pak-China business summit takes KSE 72 points higher

The Karachi stock market remained under the bullish spell during the week as the Pak-China Business Cooperation Summit, which concluded with 17 agreements – four memorandum of understandings (MoUs) and one joint venture worth $15 billion between the 2 countries, propelled investors to go for buying activity.

The Karachi Stock Exchange (KSE) 100-share index gained 72.08 points or 0.60 percent closing at 11,858.17 points compared to 11,786.09 points of the previous week.

“The market opened on a positive note following Chinese PM’s visit,” said JS Sec analyst Rabia Tariq. “However, later on in the week, typical profit-taking trend before the year-end was witnessed.”

Rising cotton prices boosted textiles like NML and NCL while reports of a likely payment of Rs 35 billion by the Ministry of Finance to Pakistan State Oil (PSO) to ease its financial woes caused the stock to rally 2.8 percent, she said.

“Market sentiments were boosted following the Pak-China Business Cooperation Summit which concluded with 17 agreements, four MoUs and one joint venture worth $15 billion between the 2 countries. On the contrary, the government of Pakistan’s request for a 9-month extension in the International Monetary Fund’s Stand-by Arrangement proved to be a dampener. Moreover, in this week’s PIB auction, the State Bank accepted bids worth Rs 20.5 billion, with 3, 5 & 10-yr yields rising to 14.25 percent, 14.30 percent and 14.36 percent, up 35bps, 30bps and 26bps, respectively.

With rising cotton prices in the international and local markets, textile sector witnessed an increase of 3 percent in its capitalisation with NML and NCL (up 3.4 percent and 2 percent) mainly in the limelight. News of Engro’s new fertilizer plant likely to attain CoD in the 2nd week of January 2011 and increase in urea prices by Rs 190 per bag, caused the scrip to gain 2 percent. PSO rallied on MoF’s assurance of a Rs 35 billion payment to ease its financial burden from the circular debt issue.

Foreigners continued their buying spree, with net investment of $5.5 million, while banks were the major sellers worth $16.4 million.

The total turnover fell by 27.56 percent to close at 87.01 million shares as compared to 120.12 million shares of the previous week.

“Bullish activity was witnessed in scrips across-the-board on hopes for launch of leverage products as SECP appointed a new chairman,” said Arif Habib Investment Ltd Director Ahsan Mehanti said.

via Daily Times – Leading News Resource of Pakistan – Pak-China business summit takes KSE 72 points higher.

December 25, 2010

Turkey and China’s confidence in Pakistan creates regional dynamics

President Obama was massaging the Bharati ego when he said that “India has arrived”. He however did not comment about the other emerged powers and alliances in South and West Asia. There are news reports in the the media which describes the utter furstration of th Americans and the chagrin of the Bhararits. Maha Atal in an intersting article published on the Forbes blog essentially describes the emerging facts that have now become news. She says that “As the Great Game grows in significance, it would seem, Pakistan’s value to China has increased”. She discusses Reko Diq, Gwader, and the fact that the world’s largest non-commercial bank is Chinese and now present in China providing loans and resources to the Pakistani economy. She takes an inventory of the $30 billion in Chinese investment in Pakistan and describes China’s new strategy on Pakistan. Maha describes Bharati concerns as “If the weekend’s MOUs lead to new engagement on political stability, that is much more significant than the big ticket energy projects that have dominated the headlines so far.”

Ashraf Javed in an article in The Nation describes the same story in different terms. Javen titles his story as “China thwarts Indian attempts to isolate Pakistan.” According to Javed, Beijing has stopped the Bharati propaganda against Pakistan by making a colossal commitment towards Islamabad. As we have written in previous columns, the Americans see doom ang gloom East of the Duran Line, and the Bharatis see gloom West of the Radcliff Border. The Chinese on the other hans see opportunity and profit in the land of the Indus. While Bharat is unable to resolve its disputes across the Manmohan line, the Chinese relationship with Pakistan has gorwn by leaps and bounds. Javed sees Premier Wen’s moves ” as a Chinese effort to retain balance of power in the region and to maintain Pakistan as a potent regional state.” the $35 billion in investment in Pakistan and the nuclear and space cooperation is unprecedented and will go a long way in shattering the US paradigm in South Asia. Javed is right when he says that the “US probably will need to revisit its notion of dominating Asian resources through India. In this rapidly transforming world the concept of having absolute supremacy is already outmoded. With the knowledge and technology explosion dominance of nations through military might or coercion is no more a viable option. The only way forward is mutual cooperation based on win-win propositions as China’s unprecedented support to Pakistan has blocked all Indian ambitions to isolate Pakistan on nuclear front”.

Malik Ayub Sumbal writing for the American correctly describes the new tone in Islamabad “Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao’s three-day visit to Pakistan in accompaniment with a huge business delegation, as well as subsequent statements and body language of the Pakistani politicians is a clear message of goodbye to the West.

Wen’s visit and the finalizing of forthcoming investments worth $20 billion raised serious concerns among the U.S. lobbyists here in Islamabad.

China has already invested $20 billion in Pakistan and has another $17 billion worth of projects ongoing. Approximately 10,000 Chinese workers are engaged in 120 projects in Pakistan, which includes heavy engineering, power generation, mining, and telecommunications.”

Sumbal is not alone in this analysis–the writing is on the wall for Americans–if they can get beyond the “do more mantra” and their paranoia of FATA.

The Chinese optimism about Pakistan puts  a spanner in the Bharati machinery and its local acolytes within Pakistan. Beijing’s confidence and support for the people and economy of Pakistan is raising eyebrows in the Middle East and West Asia. Turkey, the seventeenth largest economy and a major regional power is working with Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iran to rebuild the ECO–a grouping of Muslim countries who were formerly shackled by the USSR. Their independence and the discovery of oil and gas in the Central Asian Republics, create opportunity and profit for the Muslims of West Asia. This reality is being recognized by the Muslims all over the world. The Chinese and Russians are building the infrastructure to get their goods to the warm waters of the Arabian Sea. Pakistanis are willing participants in becoming the new trade corridor for China, Russia and the new Tans.

This week Turkey, Afghanistan and Pakistan are meeting in Ankara–rebuilding the ECO and trying t resolve the Afghan conflict among themselves. This trilateral dialogue is has become a powerful voice in presenting solutions to the Afghan quagmire. As the American prepare to leave, Iran, Pakistan and Turkey want to fill the vacuum so that outside forces do not take advantage of the ensuing dialogue. There is consensus that only the Muslim neighbors should resolve Afghanistan. Turkey is an acceptable broker for Iran, Pakistan, Kabul and the Taliban. There are rumors that the Taliban are meeting with Mr. Karzai in Istanbul, though this has not been publicly announced.

President Obama’s new review is being described as old wine in new bottle. The US is leaving Afghanistan–there is no doubt about it. Afghanistan’s immediate neighbors have committed themselves to fill the vacuum. This brings hope for the future of Afghanistan.

Turkey and China’s confidence in Pakistan creates regional dynamics | Pakistan Patriot.

December 25, 2010

China-Pakistan working on Satallite space projects

In another landmark development, Islamabad and Beijing have agreed to establish currency-swap arrangements that would enhance mutually beneficial cooperation in the financial sector and help promote bilateral trade between the countries.

A 18-point joint communiqué issued by the Foreign Office at the end of the visit of Chinese Premier on Sunday said that leaders of the two countries had an in-depth exchange of views on further strengthening and deepening the China-Pakistan all-weather strategic partnership of cooperation, on major international and regional issues of mutual interest in a cordial and friendly atmosphere, and reached broad consensus.

It stated that friendship and cooperation between China and Pakistan serve the fundamental interests of the two countries and peoples, and contribute to peace, stability and development in the region and beyond.

The two sides agreed to enhance strategic coordination, advance pragmatic cooperation and work together to meet challenges in pursuit of common development.

The two sides announced that the year 2011 be designated the “Year of China-Pakistan Friendship”, and decided to hold a series of activities in the political, economic, trade, military, cultural, sporting and education fields, to warmly celebrate the 60th anniversary of the establishment of China-Pakistan diplomatic relations.

The Chinese side reiterated that the Chinese government always places high on its diplomatic agenda, consolidating and developing relations with Pakistan and is firm on the policy of pursuing friendly ties with Pakistan.
The Chinese side is ready to work with Pakistan to further deepen China-Pakistan friendship and pass it on from generation to generation. The Chinese side appreciates Pakistan’s longstanding firm support on issues that concern China’s core interests.

The Pakistani side stressed that pursuing friendship with China is the bedrock of Pakistan’s foreign policy and national consensus. Pakistan appreciates the strong support and selfless assistance from the Chinese government and people for its economic and social development. Pakistan will continue to pursue the policy of further strengthening friendly relations with China.

The Chinese side reiterated that it respects Pakistan’s sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity, respects the development path chosen by the Pakistani people in the light of Pakistan’s own national conditions, and appreciates and supports Pakistan’s efforts in safeguarding its sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity and promoting peace and stability in South Asia.

The Pakistani side reiterated that it remains committed to the One-China policy, opposes Taiwan independence, supports the peaceful development of cross-straits relations and China’s reunification, and supports the efforts made by the Chinese government in safeguarding its sovereignty and territorial integrity.

The two sides shared the view that exchange of high-level visits and contacts between leaders of the two countries has played an irreplaceable role in promoting bilateral relations.

The two sides decided to maintain regular mutual visits and contacts at the leadership level, establish the annual meeting mechanism between leaders, set up the Foreign Ministers’ dialogue mechanism and reinforce the Foreign Ministries’ dialogue mechanism to strengthen China-Pakistan strategic consultation and coordination.

The Pakistani side expressed high appreciation and thanks to the Chinese side for its timely assistance in Pakistan’s floods relief and rescue efforts as well as in post-disaster reconstruction. It thanked the Chinese side for delivering relief supplies to Gilgit-Baltistan area to help the local people, and stressed that it is a vivid reflection of Pakistan-China fraternal friendship. The Chinese side reiterated that it would take full part in the post-flood reconstruction and fulfil its existing promises.

The Chinese side will support, on a priority basis the national highway network post-flood rehabilitation project in flood-affected areas, the national project for improved rice-processing, the national project for controlled atmosphere and advanced ventilated cold storage and crop monitoring through remote imagery satellite.

The Chinese side will allocate 10 million US dollars for the Citizen Damage Compensation Plan of Pakistan, and provide 100 million US dollars in preferential loans and 300 million US dollars in preferential buyer’s credit for projects of great importance to Pakistan.

The Chinese side stands ready to share with Pakistan relevant information and experience on disaster reduction and relief, and provide related technical support and training.

The two sides agreed to explore the feasibility of establishing joint programmes on environmental studies, in particular research and exchange of information on shared eco systems.

The two sides agreed to further intensify cooperation in infrastructure development, energy and agriculture on a priority basis.
The Chinese side will provide assistance for upgrading the Karakorum Highway, resolve the problem of earthquake lakes, and encourage Chinese financial institutions to explore feasible financing schemes with the Pakistani side.

The energy cooperation mechanism will be established to push forward bilateral cooperation in conventional energy, renewable energy and civil nuclear energy. The two sides agreed to start the construction of China-Pakistan Agriculture Demonstration Zones as soon as possible.
The two sides agreed to enhance mutually beneficial cooperation in the financial sector. The two sides agreed to establish currency-swap arrangements.

The Industrial and Commercial Bank of China decided to establish branches in Islamabad and Karachi. The Chinese side is also ready to facilitate qualified Pakistani banks to open branches in China.
The two sides decided to further implement the Framework Agreement between Pakistan Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO) and China National Space Administration (CNSA) on Deepening Cooperation in Space Science and Technology. In this context, they expressed satisfaction on their joint collaboration in fabrication and launching of satellites.

The two sides agreed further cooperation in human resources development. The Chinese side is ready to help Pakistan enhance its capacities in science, technology and management.

The two sides decided to renew the Five Year Development Programme on Trade and Economic Cooperation. The two sides expressed satisfaction with the 14th meeting of the China-Pakistan Joint Economic Commission and the Business Cooperation Summit, and instructed related departments to implement the decisions of the Joint Economic Commission to strengthen China-Pakistan economic and trade cooperation.

The two sides encouraged the relevant departments to implement decisions taken by the second session of the Free Trade Commission. The two sides jointly declared that the second phase negotiations of the China-Pakistan Free Trade Agreement would be launched in the first quarter of Year 2011 to enhance trade liberalisation and promote economic and trade growth of the two countries.

The two sides pledged to work for continuous and all-round progress in the development of the China-Pakistan Free Trade Area, and decided to establish the China-Pakistan Entrepreneurs Forum to strengthen exchanges between their business communities. Pakistan decided to establish a Special Economic Zone for Chinese Businesses to attract more Chinese investment in Pakistan.

The two sides support and encourage border trade to promote common development and prosperity in the border areas. The two sides will explore the possibility of establishing trans-border economic zones and take steps to enhance cooperation in border management.

The two sides reiterated that they will continue to enhance mutual trust and cooperation in the military and security field in line with the principles and spirit of the Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Good-neighbourly Relations between the People’s Republic of China and the Islamic Republic of Pakistan signed in 2005.

This is conducive to peace, security and stability of the two countries and the region. The two sides agreed to step up personnel training, joint exercises, training and cooperation for national defence, science and technology, and collaboration in defence production. The two sides also agreed to give further impetus to maritime security cooperation.
The two sides agreed to expand cultural, sporting and people-to-people interactions in a comprehensive manner, and engage in broad contacts between universities, think tanks, academic institutions, mass media, and film and television industries.

The two sides decided to establish cultural centres in each other’s country, maintain and expand step by step the one hundred youth exchange programme and enhance cooperation in young officials training, exchanges between young entrepreneurs and young volunteer services.
China will invite 100 senior middle school/high school students from Pakistan to China for the Summer Camp and continue to provide Confucius Institute scholarships to Pakistani university students.

China will provide 500 government scholarships to Pakistan in 3 years starting from 2011. The two sides will also intensify their cooperation in science and technology, applied sciences, learning of Chinese and Urdu languages.

The Chinese People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries will undertake the China-Pakistan Friendship Bringing-Light Tour to Pakistan and provide free surgical treatment for 1000 Pakistani cataract patients within two years. The two sides agreed to open new air routes and increase flights.

The two sides shared the view that terrorism, separatism and extremism pose serious threats to regional peace, stability and security. They reaffirmed their resolve to undertake substantive cooperation under bilateral and multilateral frameworks, and jointly fight the above-mentioned three forces.

The Chinese side held the view that Pakistan has made great efforts and endured great sacrifices in fighting terrorism, and reiterated that it respects the counter-terrorism strategy constituted and implemented by Pakistan in light of its own national conditions. The Pakistani side reaffirmed its resolve to fight terrorism.

The Chinese side held the view that Pakistan is an important member state of the region and plays a vital role in safeguarding peace, security and stability.

The two sides decided to strengthen communication and coordination in regional affairs, on hotspot issues such as the issue of Afghanistan and regional cooperation.

The two sides voiced support for the unity and territorial integrity of Afghanistan, the efforts of the Afghan government to advance peace, reconstruction and national reconciliation based on the fundamental interest of its country and people, and expressed hope to see a peaceful, stable and independent Afghanistan that enjoys development and good neighbourliness.

The two sides stressed their commitment to stronger solidarity and cooperation among developing countries, to upholding their rights and interests in the process of globalisation, and to making sustained efforts to achieve the United Nations Millennium Development Goals.
The two sides reiterated that they would step up coordination and cooperation on major international issues such as climate change, food and energy security and UN reform.

The two sides signed 12 Agreements/Memorandums of Understanding on cooperation in the fields of culture, transportation, economic assistance, media, finance, and energy.

At the invitation of Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani, Prime Minister of Pakistan, Wen Jiabao, Premier of China paid the official visit to the Islamic Republic of Pakistan on 17-19 December 2010.

Premier Wen Jiabao held formal talks with Prime Mi nister Gilani, and met President Asif Ali Zardari, Chairman Senate Farooq Hamid Naek, Speaker National Assembly Dr Fehmida Mirza, leaders of the main political parties, Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee and the three Services Chiefs.
During the visit, Premier Wen Jiabao had extensive contacts with people of various sectors of Pakistan.

He delivered a speech entitled Shaping the Future Together Through Thick and Thin in Islamabad. The National Disaster Management Authority briefed the two Prime Ministers.

They also attended the Pakistan-China Business Cooperation Summit, the Inauguration Ceremony of the Pakistan-China Friendship Centre and the Launching Ceremony of the China-Pakistan Friendship Bringing-Light Tour, and met individuals who made great contributions to China-Pakistan friendship.

Premier Wen Jiabao expressed appreciation to Prime Minister Gilani and the government and people of Pakistan for the warm hospitality accorded to him and his delegation. Premier Wen Jiabao invited Prime Minister Gilani to pay an official visit to China at a mutually convenient time. Prime Minister Gilani appreciated the invitation and accepted it with pleasure.

Pak1stanFirst-China-Pakistan working on Satallite space projects | Happening.