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Web Desk
February 8, 2018

Pak-China-Russia cooperation opens new vistas of prosperity in Eurasia: Salman Bashir


Web Desk
Thu, Feb, 18

Former foreign secretary of Pakistan Salman Bashir has said that China and Russia are destined to partner in setting the trendlines of cooperation for development and peace in Eurasia. 

He was speaking at the conference on ‘Pakistan, China and Russia: Regional Stability and the Dividends of Peace’ here Wednesday.

Chairman Joints Chief of Staff Committee, Chinese Ambassador Yao Jing, Russian Ambassador to Pakistan Alexey Dedov also attended the conference.

Speaking at the occasion Salman Bashir said; “China is our most trusted all- weather friend. We rejoice with our Chinese brothers on their stellar national accomplishments and their continuing highly valuable contribution to global peace, stability and development.”

Salman Bashir

Salman Bashir said that China and Russia have delineated an enlightened New Vision-of harmony and cooperation for development and stability in Eurasia and beyond, adding that Pakistan is happy to be a partner in this civilizational endeavor of utmost consequence for the peoples of the world.

The former diplomat went on to say the Chinese Belt and Road Initiative is a shining example of the working of the new vision.

“We must together with China and Russia work to overcome the challenges to Eurasian cooperation,”he added.

He further said  that Pakistan is located in the heart of Eurasia. Its destiny will be impacted by contemporary trends and in turn it has the potential to determine the dynamics shaping our times, adding that globalization was irreversible. Hence forth China will assume leadership responsibility in the international community, as a responsible stakeholder.

China, Japan, South Korea, and the ASEAN together with emerging economies such as Pakistan and India are at the core of this changing global dynamic.

China and Russia are sponsoring cooperative initiatives in the Shanghai Cooperation framework aimed at economic integration and consolidating the Euro-Asia links.

A spirit of consultations, cooperation and coordination between China, Russia and the US is increasingly becoming a sine qua non for ensuring global peace.

The US Administration’s new Afghanistan and South Asia strategy is a variant of its Indo-Pacific policy.

It essentially speaks of ratcheting up pressure on Pakistan, recognizes India’s role in Afghanistan, inter alia provides for an increase of US troop levels in Afghanistan, lays out a ‘conditions’-based approach and removes any ambiguity about a possible long- term US presence in Afghanistan.

While Defense Secretary Mattis and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson have criticized the Chinese Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

India has been seeking to leverage the US against Pakistan. India’s principal strategic objective is to disrupt CPEC.

It has unleashed a covert campaign to subvert Pakistan by fomenting insurgencies and terrorism. It’s declared policy is to seek Pakistan’s isolation.

The US seems to be playing along at zero actual costs for now. But it can get sucked into the South Asian quagmire by undermining the Pakistan-India strategic equation.

The BRI is an inclusive concept of voluntary win-win partnership.

“The Chinese emphasis is on building a community of shared future for mankind.

Until major powers respect each other’s core interests and major concerns, until they learn to keep their differences under control, they will be unable to build a new model of relations featuring cooperation instead of confrontation, respect before rivalry and win -win above acquisitiveness.

Pakistan fully concurs with the Chinese principled and enlightened approach to shaping the world on the basis of equal partnerships for economic and social development.

China and Russia have the financial, technological and institutional capacities to promote mutually advantageous cooperation for development.

Connectivity is the key element of the BRI strategy.

The CPEC is the first of the flagship projects under the BRI.

It is making good progress and is expected to become a fate-changer for Pakistan.

The CPEC Plus vision envisages extending in the first stage China-Pakistan partnership to Afghanistan, Iran, Turkey and possibly the Gulf region.

For Pakistan, bringing stability and peace to Afghanistan is a priority. The civil war in Afghanistan has lasted almost four decades.

The civil war conditions have transformed the nature of the Afghan economy.

Stability in Afghanistan is contingent on changing the ‘war’ to ‘normal’ economy.

This can only start to happen if the CPEC Plus variant of the BRI is introduced to Afghanistan.

Salman Bashir said that China, Russia and the US should cooperate in evolving a viable framework for development of Afghanistan, with the full cooperation of Afghanistan and all Afghan political actors.

India can stand to benefit from peace and progress of Afghanistan as well as the considerable dividends that would accrue from working the west-east routes.

China, Russia, Iran and Pakistan cooperation centered on projects and trade could be a win -win for all.