Gwadar much ...

Pakistan Observer - - IN­TER­NA­TIONAL -

plans to di­vert 17% of its oil im­ports for its Western parts to Gwadar, which will give huge boost to trade ac­tiv­i­ties through this port. He said Pak­istan has to pro­vide ef­fi­cient ser­vices and taken sev­eral mea­sures to fa­cil­i­tate Afghan trade through the coun­try.

Sar­taj Aziz said apart from diplo­matic con­nec­tiv­ity, Pak­istan is also fo­cus­ing on phys­i­cal con­nec­tiv­ity with coun­tries of the re­gion. In this con­nec­tion, he re­ferred, among oth­ers, to CASA-1000, TAPI, ex­ten­sion of CPEC to Kyr­gyzs­tan and Ta­jik­istan to pro­vide ac­cess to Cen­tral Asia, road links with Afghanistan, and upgra­da­tion of rail­way link with Iran.

The Ad­vi­sor ac­knowl­edged that visit of the In­dian Prime Min­is­ter to GCC coun­tries had eco­nomic and trade di­men­sions but pointed out that Pak­istan has deeper and closer ties with these coun­tries.

Sim­i­larly, with Iran, Pak­istan is in­ten­si­fy­ing ef­forts to forge closer eco­nomic ties af­ter lift­ing of sanc­tions.

About grow­ing Indo-US re­la­tions, he said broader geo-po­lit­i­cal fac­tors are in­volved par­tic­u­larly the US pol­icy of con­tain­ing China where In­dia fits in.

He said speech of the In­dian Prime Min­is­ter at the joint ses­sion of US Congress was di­rected against Pak­istan and we have ef­fec- tively coun­tered it and are go­ing to counter it fur­ther.

He said In­dia has been blam­ing Pak­istan with re­gard to non-state ac­tors and Pak­istan is build­ing dossiers about ac­tiv­i­ties of RAW agents in fo­ment­ing trou­ble in Balochis­tan and else­where in the coun­try.

He ex­pressed the con­fi­dence that in view of ef­fec­tive diplo­macy of Pak­istan, In­dia would not be able to get an­other ex­cep­tion this time to make an en­try into Nu­clear Sup­pli­ers Group (NSG).

He said Pak­istan has been urg­ing that there should be cri­te­ria-based ap­proach for in­clu­sion of non-NPT coun­tries into NSG and the cri­te­ria should be equally ap­ply to all.

He said Pak­istan’s point of view has re­ceived con­sid­er­able sup­port from many coun­tries.

He said our point of view was gen­er­ally ac­cepted at the meet­ing of NSG in Vi­enna and hoped that same would be the re­sult in its forth­com­ing meet­ing in South Korea.

Re­ply­ing to points raised by the Chair­man, the Ad­vi­sor said Pak­istan is low­er­ing its de­pen­dence on for­eign as­sis­tance.

As for Indo-US mil­i­tary co­op­er­a­tion is con­cerned, Pak­istan has been em­pha­siz­ing that this should not widen fur­ther the strate­gic im­bal­ance in the re­gion.

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