|Pakistan’s Relations with China|
While it was the duty of the federal government that all the details related to CPEC should be made transparent and easily accessible besides ensuring that fruits of CPEC are shared equitably by all the parts and regions of the country, all stakeholders should refrain from stances and approaches that make this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity controversial and look like unviable.
This was the crux of deliberations made in a two-day national conference: “Pakistan’s Relations with China” organized jointly by Pakistan Study Center, University of Peshawar and the Institute of Policy Studies (IPS), on May 11-12, 2016.
The speakers also reiterated that relations with China are a hallmark of Pakistan’s foreign policy and the mega China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) will be a win-win initiative for both the countries in prevailing regional and global environment.
Experts and academics from various parts of the country noted that to benefit from its vast potential CPEC should be pursued as a project of national significance exhibiting the same unanimity across the nation that was present in the case of the country’s nuclear program.
They noted that CPEC should not be seen merely as a passage, but it is a multidimensional plan having several developmental projects encompassing communications, energy, trade and investments.
Prof. Dr. Sayed Minhajul Hassan, Dean, Faculty of Arts and Humanities, University of Peshawar was of the view that Pakistan has to play a proactive role in making the bond of friendship with China stronger and protecting its national interest through it.
Khalid Rahman, Director General IPS, cautioned against adversary forces at play, creating a negative image of the cementing partnership, particularly CPEC. He noted that the present Chinese leadership had witnessed Pakistan’s contribution for China in their childhood.
They, he highlighted, are now willing to contribute meaningfully for Pakistan by developing a mutually beneficial partnership.
He stressed that “the spirit of friendly ties between the two countries needs to be transferred to the younger generations of both the sides”.
Dr. Fakhar-ul-Islam, Director of the Pakistan Study Center, stressed the need for consistent efforts to enhance mutual understanding between China and Pakistan through academic activities.
He noted that debate and discussion removes that misconception and paves the way for joining hands for common goals.
Air Cdre (r) Khalid Iqbal, member IPS-National Academic Council argued that China-Pakistan relationship had acquired greater strategic significance against the back drop of complex regional scenario. Rising China provides Pakistan with an advantageous position in the region.