A Deal's Collapse Clouds Pakistan's China Alliance

SpArK

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A Deal's Collapse Clouds Pakistan's China Alliance






A Chinese mining company pulled out of what was to be Pakistan's largest foreign-investment deal because of security concerns, complicating Islamabad's effort to position its giant neighbor as an alternative to the U.S. as its main ally.


An official at China Kingho Group, one of China's largest private coal miners, said on Thursday it had backed out in August from a $19 billion deal in southern Sindh province due to concerns for its personnel after recent bombings in Pakistan's major cities.


Zubair Motiwala, chairman of the Sindh Board of Investment, acknowledged the cancellation of plans to build a coal mine, power and chemical plants over 20 years. But he said he was hopeful that Kingho would reconsider.


Pakistan has been playing up its friendship with China ever since the U.S. killing of Osama bin Laden in Pakistan in May sent relations between Islamabad and Washington into a tailspin.


But China's response has been lukewarm so far, suggesting that Islamabad may remain dependent on billions of dollars in military and civilian aid from Washington for some time to come.





Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani used a visit this week from Meng Jianzhu, China's minister of public security, to promote the friendship, which Mr. Gilani said was "higher than mountains, deeper than oceans, stronger than steel and sweeter than honey."


Army chief Gen. Ashfaq Kayani thanked Mr. Meng, who pledged $1.2 million in aid for Pakistan's law-enforcement agencies, for his country's "unwavering support."


The gushing compliments contrasted recent U.S.-Pakistani rhetoric, after outgoing U.S. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Mike Mullen called an insurgent group that targets Americans a wing of Pakistani intelligence, and U.S. lawmakers threatened to withhold Pakistani aid.


Islamabad responded with a warning that the U.S. risks losing an ally with such accusations.


China has backed Pakistan, its largest export market for armaments, for many years as a strategic counterweight to India in the Indian Ocean region. The countries have developed military hardware together, such as the JF-17 fighter jet, and China is helping Pakistan build civilian nuclear reactors.


Beijing constructed and financed Pakistan's Gwadar port, opened in 2007, as part of plans to develop a road and rail transport corridor from China's northwest to the Arabian Sea.


In many cases, though, China's support has stopped short of what Pakistan had hoped, while Islamabad, in Beijing's eyes, has failed to live up to its promises, including to ensure security for investments.


Pakistan's army has been lobbying for a formal defense pact with China in the wake of the U.S. raid that killed bin Laden, angering many in Pakistan and straining relations with Washington, a Pakistani government official said.


Such a pact would draw China into any conflict involving their ally and likely anger the U.S. and India, Pakistan's regional rival.


China hasn't commented on the matter. A spokesman for Pakistan's military declined to comment.



"The Chinese wouldn't go in for that. It's too much to put on their plate when they can't ensure how much they can control their own ally," says Aisha Siddiqa, a Pakistani military analyst.



Beijing is keen to balance its support for Islamabad with a renewed push to improve relations with India, a growing trade partner. China also is anxious to avoid fresh tensions with the U.S. that could disrupt a first official visit to Washington early next year by Vice President Xi Jinping, who is expected to take over as Communist Party chief in 2012 and president in 2013, diplomats and analysts say.


The U.S., meanwhile, wants China to engage in a dialogue on Pakistan as Washington looks for ways to bring pressure to bear on Islamabad over its ties with Islamist militants. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made the request directly to China's Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi in New York on Monday, according to a senior State Department official.


Han Hua, an expert on South Asia at Peking University, said China viewed Pakistan as an increasingly important strategic partner given the imminent withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan.


"That doesn't mean China wants to replace the U.S. in the role it played. It's not a zero sum game," she said.



Some deals are going ahead. Pakistan last week signed a preliminary agreement with another smaller Chinese company, Global Mining Co., to invest $3 billion in a mine and power project close to the one that Kingho canceled, Mr. Motiwala said.



Pakistan's navy recently agreed to buy two Chinese-made Azmat-class attack boats and, in August, China launched a Pakistani telecommunications satellite.


Other Pakistani requests for China to increase its funding of infrastructure projects haven't progressed.


In May, Pakistan's Defense Minister said that China had agreed to take over operation of Gwadar, which is doing little business as a commercial port, and that Islamabad has asked China to build a base there for Pakistan's navy.


China has remained silent on the issue. Pakistani officials involved in Gwadar's operations say there is no sign China will take over. The officials say they have been frustrated by China's failure to finance and build a road network to connect the port to the rest of the country.



A number of Chinese workers have been killed in Pakistan in the past decade, some of them in troubled Baluchistan province, where armed separatist insurgents have opposed Chinese investments.


Some Chinese experts say Gwadar's cut-off location in Baluchistan detracts from its attractiveness as a military base and as a transit point for China's oil imports, given the high cost and security risk of piping them across some of Pakistan's least stable regions.



A Deal's Collapse Clouds Pakistan's China Alliance - WSJ.com
 

sob

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Pakistan has to realise that they have to focus on their internal security first rather than be the Global Islamic Thekedar. You will just end up pawns at the hands of other nations.

As per recent reports China is also concerned about the activities of Pak trained terrorists active in their regions. The relations between the all weather friends is not immune to the realities on ground and will keep on evolving over a period of time.
 

no smoking

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This kind of wishful thinking can never help india's strategic planning.
So far, the top priority in Sino-Pak relationship is india, not economic motivation or any other political factor.
 
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This kind of wishful thinking can never help india's strategic planning.
So far, the top priority in Sino-Pak relationship is india, not economic motivation or any other political factor.
China is capable of having a strategic relationship??(similar to US-Pakistan) So far China's pocketbook hasn't proven it.
 

blueblood

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This kind of wishful thinking can never help india's strategic planning.
So far, the top priority in Sino-Pak relationship is india, not economic motivation or any other political factor.
Agreed, but what exactly are you going to tell the Pakistani public? Do you plan to tell them your friendship is not higher than the mountains and it was strictly a business deal, not a helping hand which help them to come out of the abyss of American aid.

I mean you guys are the best they have and if not you then who?
 

bengalraider

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I personally feel saddened by the loss of this deal, $19Billion could go along way in providing employment to many ordinary Pakistanis who will otherwise be easy prey for jehadi groups and conversely lead to greater problems for India. As studies have shown the amount of fundamentalism in a society is inversely proportional to the economic development in the same; Indonesia and Malaysia being examples of Muslim countries with proper viable economic setups(Saudi Arabia and the rest of the mideast are more of artificial economies propped up by oil revenues).
I for one would welcome Pakistan as an overtly Chinese client state on our western borders as long as it brings economic prosperity and reduction of fundamentalism in South Asia.China has long shown itself to be a mature stable nation(however belligerent/competitive our relations with the Chinese might be)compared to the Pakistanis who have been little more than thorns in our behinds.
 

Yusuf

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Further proof that the hight of that paki chini friendship is not taller than the mountains and depth is as shallow as my neighborhood pond.

Pakistans only use for china is to fight india down to the last paki. They gave them nukes and missiles to have the specter of nukes on india while they enjoy the show. So that their own cities dont get glassed. Pakistan is just an excuse for China.
 

A.V.

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This kind of wishful thinking can never help india's strategic planning.
So far, the top priority in Sino-Pak relationship is india, not economic motivation or any other political factor.
That is the opinion of an individual , not of the government , the chinese government wants to keep INDIA factor away from pak china relations , they are a smart lot of people in the chinese ministry.
 

Ray

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China possibly does not want to get embroiled in the religious fundamentalist confrontation since it will leave Chinese dead and that would be difficult to explain back home in China.

Too many Chinese dead in Pakistan, and to it the problem in Xinjiang that China now claims is Pakistan sponsored, it will rile the Chinese back home against the Muslims in general, and Pakistan in particular.

This will lead to domestic and international relationship turmoil.

It will put a spanner in the Chinese delicate handling that they at in XInjiang as also in her relationship with Pakistan.

It will lead to unrest in China. This the Chinese Govt is something the Chinese Govt would like to avoid.
 

Ray

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It would be an incorrect surmise that the Chinese Govt would put its citizens to risk just to keep the strategic partnership with Pakistan on high gear.

The strategic partnership, without the deal that seems to have fallen through, can be kept alive and kicking without exposing its citizens to risk and, as a result of their being killed, causing unrest and turmoil in China itself.

China would first be bothered about the stability of their country and the Communist Party and then worry about other nations and the relationship with them.

As far as India is concerned, it makes no difference if China invests in Pakistan or Chinese get killed by Pakistani fundamentalists.

In an obtuse manner, India does not care even a tinker's damn if Chinese get a taste of Islamist fundamentalist wrath. In fact, maybe some would believe such is necessary since China has to wake up and smell the coffee!
 

Armand2REP

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You would think China could provide its own security for a deal that big. :laugh:
 

Ray

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You would think China could provide its own security for a deal that big. :laugh:
The issue is not that the Chinese are to provide security for themselves.

It would be the same as what has happened to the Chinese engineers working in Balochistan!

One day here and the next day cavorting with the angels!
 

pankaj nema

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If China really loved Pakistan , It would give 3 Billion Dollars in Cash immediately and shore up the Pakistani rupee which is in a free fall mode

Chinese are just fooling Pakistan with their proclaimations of Friendship

Pakistani economy is extremely weak and is caught in a debt trap .

SO any investment is extremely risk and China knows that it will loose its money

Hence the walk out from this deal

And add to it the rising tensions with US and internal violence ; only a fool will invest in Pakistan
 

Zebra

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:laugh:

higher than mountains - deeper than occeans .....

 
Last edited by a moderator:

Zebra

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:lol:
stronger than steel - sweeter than honey .....

 
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sesha_maruthi27

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I hope that the Chinese are not fools to waste their hard earned money to invest in a waste bowl of the world.
 

SADAKHUSH

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After this collapse only place to find a "all weather friend" would be on the other planet. Since China is going to send man to the moon ask them to take Gilani saheb with them and leave him till aliens come to visit him on the moon.

This is called country without a vision. Let them be what they want to be.
 

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