Standing together in safeguarding each other’s national sovereignty, territorial integrity, and promoting peace and stability, the two countries-Pakistan and China- shares a history of cordial relations, and surfaces the deep-rooted associations between the people, militaries’ and the two states, and is often termed as ‘All-round cooperation’. In the contemporary strategic environment, the relation between the two countries holds immense importance in the strategic regional stability. Both countries have high potential to grow together to meet the evolving geo-economics and geo-strategic challenges. The strategic relations between two countries are considered to be an enduring pledge and commitment towards each other, together with safeguarding each other’s national interests. The promotion of each other’s core policies and interdependency is the core of strategic relations between the two countries.
Pakistan holds strategic importance for China for numerous reasons. Pakistan has provided a platform for building a safe outlet to China, in this regard; the Gwadar Port holds immense importance for both countries. The long-term US presence in Afghanistan also was viewed with suspicion in China, as they consider it to be a cause of unrest in Xinjiang region. Thus, the role of Pakistan in countering threats from Afghanistan and building peace there is crucial for Pakistan, and China recognizes Pakistan’s struggles in this respect. China, on the other hand, is a tried and true friend of Pakistan; and has helped Pakistan through various crises and supported Pakistan in countering its major rival-India.
Pakistan army recently celebrated the 94th anniversary of People’s Liberation Army (PLA), at GHQ Rawalpindi. The officials of the Chinese embassy and from the tri-services of Pakistan Armed forces also participated in the event. Pakistan’s Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa was the chief guest of the event, and commemorated the event by highlighting the deep-seated cordial relations between the two states. He mentioned that the two countries have stood together and have contributed towards safeguarding the collective interests; he furthermore, termed the relations between the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) and Pakistan Army as brother in arms. Moreover, General Bajwa also praised the role of PLA’s leadership in enhancing its role in nation-building, defence and security.
The strong relations between states are based on reciprocal reverence and cooperation. The role of two countries is exemplary in reciprocally cooperating and standing by each other in the times of crisis, and has become even more important in the contemporary geo-strategic environment. China and Pakistan have conducted many joint Ventures, the combined military exercises and other goodwill visits. The two countries have many training exchanges programs for promoting each other’s culture and mutual understanding between the states. On the top, the strong relations between the armies of the two states are the backbone of the relations. The strategic cooperation between the two states has a very strong impact on regional; and international stability.
The relationship between the two states has nurtured over the years, and the two strategic partners are now cooperating in almost every field. Moreover, it’s the essence of the strong relations between two states, that the relationship is not based on cooperation against the third party. The cooperation between the two states has grown in the era of all the ruling parties, and has always promoted the agenda of peace, stability and development, in both economic and strategic spheres. As the collaboration between the two states will grow further, it has the potential to attract many other international stakeholders to take part and invest in the joint ventures run by Pakistan and China. The trade and economic collaboration between the two countries is conjointly beneficial and also helps in enhancing the foreign relations with other countries, through various projects. Thus, creates a win-win situation at both ends.
The rapidly changing geo-strategic environment further augments the importance of relations between the two states. Regional peace is vital for the development of the people of a country. Thus, promoting friendly ties with neighbors enhances peace in the region, as well. The two states collaborate in the name of peace and harmony and for furthering regional prosperity. In the years to come, the regional prosperity between the two states will further grow which will bring stability in the region. China and Pakistan are two responsible countries, which are promoting global peace and stability.
*Amber Afreen Abid, Research Associate, Strategic Vision Institute (SVI), Islamabad.