Pakistan and the world


Economic Co-operation with Islamic Countries



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Economic Co-operation with Islamic Countries: Pakistan has special relations with the countries of the Middle East Some of them granted large amounts of loans for the implementation of Pakistan’s development projects, for instance Iran, Libya, Abu Dhabi and others have made total commitment of 70 million dollars to Pakistan during 1973-76 while Saudi Arabia and Kuwait have confined their assistance to project financing only
Some of the Projects are (i) Pak-Arab Refinery and PakArab Fertilizer project at Multan with Abu Dhabi’s aid (n) Mustakham and Javed Cement Plants and Polestar Plant with Saudi Arabian aid and (in) Spmtangi Cement factory, Engineering and Medical Colleges in Baluchistan and Lasbela and Bolon Textile Mills with Iranian aid
ECO: The three countries, Pakistan, Iran and Turkey, had set up in 1976, an organisation of economic cooperation under the Treaty of Izmir to develop mtra-regional means of communication, to reduce postal and telegraph rates, to co-ordinate banking and insurance operations, to establish joint chambers of trade and commerce and industrial ventures, to promote cultural ties and tourism and to foster technical co-operation between the three countries The ECO Chamber of Commerce and Industry is now functioning The trade between Pakistan and its ECO presents is expanding under the agreement the most-favoured nation treatment in the matter of import and export trade is granted to each other In the industrial sector, out of about 55 approved joint projects, more than half have gone into production Some of them are the joint shipping service The rail link and the Highway linking Ankara, Tehran and Karachi, the insurance company and a joint bank In the social and cultural fields, annual programmes for the promotion for social and cultural ties are formulated and implemented, including the exchange of artists, students, sports teams, and women origination

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Quetta Action Plan: A conference of the ministers of the three ECO countries met at Quetta on February 6 and 7, 1993, attended by the Prime Minister of Pakistan. Foreign Ministers of Turkey and Iran. The conference adopted an Action Plan, as outlined in a 29 paragraph document, to be called Quetta Action Plan. The plan set specific targets of road transport by trucks going to all the ECO countries, to expand air travel, to open a trade and development bank, reduction of tariff and removal of all barriers in trade between the ECO countries and greater involvement of the chambers of commerce and industry in promoting trade and economic relationship in the region.
Expansion of the ECO: With the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 several central Asian republics became independent sovereign states. Up to 1991, they were linked with Moscow. They now sought to re-establish centuries-old Muslim countries of the Economic Cooperation Organisation (ECO), which lay to their south. They are six in number, viz., Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan and Kyrghistan. At the same time, Afghanistan also became an independent Islamic State. Accordingly, in November, 1992, at an extra ordinary meeting of the ministers of the ECO, these seven countries joined ECO. It expanded from the original three to ten countries. The new ECO became thus the biggest economic bloc after the European Community. It included the ancient region of Central Asia. It comprised a population of 300 million people and extended on an area of six million square kilometres. It possesses vast natural resources. Moreover, it is united by history, religion and culture. It lies on the old silk route, which extended from China to Europe. Nevertheless, the ECO is not so united an organisation as is the European Union. Two of its members, namely Afghanistan and Tajikistan are beset with internal disputes and disturbances. The extraordinary session of ECO held at Ashkabad in May 1997 stressed upon the cooperation in the fields of communication, technology and science. In its session (official representatives) held at Islamabad on July 17, 2003 it decided to promote among member countries by gradually reducing tariff barriers against one other to a level of 15 per cant over a period of the next eight years. It was indeed a significant step towards the ’ ultimate goal of converting the region into a homogeneous economic zone. It is a good effort but painstaking efforts have to be taken in this regard because:
1. Countries whose economics are heavily dependent on imports find it more difficult to come together or within such an arrangement;
2. It is almost impossible for countries with differing levels of economic development to trade with each other within the framework of a common market without
PAKISTAN AND THE WORLD -\ 55
hurting other members or getting hurt by members having more developed economies;
3. Each of the member countries needs to achieve a certain level of internal macroeconomic stability to be able to become a source of economic benefit for each other when joined together in a common market. To keep all these variables as well as commonalities in assessing the progress, the ECO has agreed under the new accord to set up a cooperation council to oversee the implementation and monitoring of the agreement.
Iran: With Iran Pakistan has very old historical, religious, linguistic and cultural relations of which the popularity of the Persian Language and of Iranian culture in Pakistan are two important examples. The Heads of State of the two countries especially the former Shahinshah of Iran have frequently visited countries. The Cooperation between the.two countries in various fields, such as the joint industrial ventures, is a shining example of close relationship between Iran and Pakistan. Iran is one of the very few countries which rendered great help and support to Pakistan during the Bangladesh Crisis of 1971 and in its after math. Both Pakistan and Iran have agreed that the Indian Ocean should remain a zone of peace, free from super-Power rivalry. They also emphasise the need for the establishment of a nuclear free zone- in South Asia. Both of them have called upon Israel to withdraw from occupied Arab lands in Palestine, and both have agreed that the security of the Persian Gulf was the exclusive concern of the countries situated around it.
Relations with Islamic Iran: In February, 1979, monarchy was overthrown in Iran by the revolutionary forces under the leadership of Ayatullah Khomeini. The Shah of Iran fled from the country and Iran was declared an Islamic Republic after a lot of bloodshed in the country. Since coming to power, the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran has shot or hanged a great number of its opponents on both political and religious grounds. In the beginning of

1980, a war broke out between Iran and Iraq. Iraqi leaders were upset by the Siaite propaganda of the new Iranian Government in their country, which has a fairly large Shia community. The Iran-Iraq war was a great blow to the unity, strength and solidarity of the Islamic World The Organisation of Islamic Conference (QIC) appealed on several occasions to both the belligerent countries to stop their fratricidal war. But the Iranian government was reluctant to conclude peace with Iraq. It threatened to invade and occupy Iraq in order to overthrow the government of President Saddam Hussain of Iraq and to install a pro-Iranian government instead. Although fl9hting took place on common borders of the countries, the Iranian

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dream of Iraq conquest and overthrow of President Saddam did not materialise
The Zia-ul-Haq’ Government had whole heartedly supported the Islamic revolution in Iran and the emergence of the Islamic republic in that country Pakistan has always stood neutral in the Iran Iraq war and fervently prayed for peaceful settlement of this War Nevertheless, the new Islamic Revolutionary Government of Iran had on several occasions shown deep-seated hostility towards the people, country and government of Pakistan, declaring Pakistan not only an un-lslamic country, but also a puppet of the U S A whom Ayatullah Khomeini and other Iranian leaders call as ”the Great Shitan” while on the contrary, they had a soft corner in their hearts for the Soviet Union
Relation between Iran & Pakistan continued to become stronger after the restoration of democracy in Pakistan Iran extended cooperation in various industrial fields Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on scientific, education and technological cooperation between the two countries was signed in September,

1992 on the vilit of Iranian President All Akbar Hashmi Rafsanjani During his visit President Rafsanjani fully supported Pakistan in settling the Kashmir dispute with India by implementing the U N resolutions Again in July, 1993, Pakistan and Iran signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to increase LPG import from Iran from the existing level of 25 to 200 tons a day
Iranian government bitterly hated United States, who it called ”arrogant global enemy” It planned to form an alliance of the regional powers of Iran, India and China to check American designs in this area Accordingly, the Indian Prime Minister, Narasimha Rao, visited Iran in September, 1993 A year later, President Rafsanjani visited New Delhi Iran and India then signed a treaty of friendship and cooperation Iran expressed support to Pakistan on Kashmir dispute with India and also vowed Islamic fraternity with Pakistan When Pakistan tested its nuclear devices in May 1998, Iran fully supported its action as it was unavoidable for the solidarity of Pakistan During the Taliban regime in Afghanistan, Iran’s relations with Pakistan became cold After the defeat of the Taliban in December 2001 Pakistan became a front line state in curbing international terrorism and thus became a revived ally of the USA which has its strained relations with Iran Thus this period for Pakistan is a period of caution and needs to be handled with care
Turkey: Turkey is one of the Muslim countries for which Pakistani people have always felt the warmest feelings of brotherhood and friendship even long before Pakistan came into being, which feelings are reciprocated by the Turkish people One reason for these feelings is that Turkey is one of the two countries in the whole of the Muslim world, the other is Saudi Arabia, which never
PAKISTAN AND THE WORLD 1 57
went under the steam-roller of European Imperialism and was never occupied by them What saved the Saudi Arabia was its Islamic sanctity and its desert wastes, and now the Saudi policies of industrial and economic development, but what saved Turkey from imperialist aggression and occupation was the courage and determination of the Turkish people under their leaders, like Kamal Ataturk, to remain a free, independent and sovereign nation These are things which have enabled them to resist all aggressions launched by Great Britain, France and other Western imperialists as well as by the new imperialist Soviet Russia
Pakistan and Turkey co-operate with each other in many fields Turkey has always supported Pakistan’s stand on Jammu and Kashmir and upholds the right of self-determination of the people of Jammu and Kashmir The people and Government of Pakistan have expressed understanding and support for the Turkish people in their efforts to protect Turkish Cypriots who are incited by the mainland Greeks and other foreign powers like Great Britain, Russia, etc
In recent years the cooperation between the two countries has further increased in such fields as railways, engineering goods road constructions, chemicals, textiles, electronics, communication, transportation and ship-building ,
MUSLIM COUNTRIES OF CENTRAL ASIA
Disintegration of the Soviet Union: Soviet Union consisted of fifteen Republics Among them five were Muslim Republics in Central Asia When in 1989, Soviet Union began to disintegrate, the Central Asian Muslim Republics also seceded from the Soviet Union and became independent sovereign states They are Azerbaijan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kirghizia and Turkmenistan Soon after independence, they sought relations with other Muslim countries, especially with the neighbouring Muslim countries to their south, such as Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan They had links with them before the Soviet occupation, due to the community of religion, culture, and thousands of years of history which goes back to the days of ancient Iran Later on, their historical jinks were further strengthened by Islam Great Muslim scholars and ^inkers like Ibn Sma, AI-Beruni and Tirmizi
Soon after they became independent countries, Pakistan ^Ought all kinds of relations with them In 1992, these six Muslim countries became members of Economic Cooperation Organisation ^ CO) in February, Pakistan entered into first-ever civil aviation Agreement with Uzbekistan The government of Pakistan and ekistan also signed a treaty to further develop inter-state

158 CIVICS OF PAKISTAN
relations and cooperation in fields of economics, trade and commerce, health care, science and technology and road transport
Central Asian countries lie on the trade routes between Japan and China on one side and Middle East and Western Europe on the other It was, therefore, planned to construct four motorways between them and Pakistan through Afghanistan The motorway plan was not implemented due to continued disturbance and fighting among various Afghan political parties and leaders, especially between the Kabul rulers, names are President Rabbani and his defence minister, Ahmed Shah Masud, Hikmatyar & the Taliban
In 1993, • Kazakhstan signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Pakistan Similarly Tajikistan also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Pakistan to supply electricity from its big hydroelectric power station at Ragonstkaya
The Central Asian States are land-locked countries They seek an access to the outside world through the Arabian Sea It will be possible by constructing roads through Pakistan But the road project cannot be implemented so long as there is disturbance in Afghanistan Interestingly, Afghanistan is also a member of the ECO Once peace is restored in it, the six central Asian countries as well as Afghanistan will have direct road and rail links to the outside world
through Pakistan
The United States of America: During the first five or six years Pakistan had little or no relations with United States of America But international factors brought the two countries into close relations They are, firstly, the growing Indian intransigence over the settlement of Kashmir dispute on the basis of the UN Resolutions by holding plebiscite in Jammu and Kashmir, while Pakistan for demanding such a settlement with its military power and numerical strength For this reason Pakistan sought foreign military and international support and assistance in other countries USA and her allies, like Great Britain, were ready to offer this kind of aid and assistance for their own reasons These reasons were the growing conflict and confrontation between the USA and its allies on the one side and the Communist Bloc, headed by the Soviet Union on the other This confrontation between the two Blocks Pakistan sought aid to defend itself against Indian attack and aggression, while USA sought alliance with Pakistan to use it as a base for attacking the Communist Block, i e USSR and Communist China, if and when a ”hot war” would break out between the two Blocs Pakistan sought protection form India, while USA aimed at aggression against Russia and China This difference of approach became, as well shall see presently, the rock on which the US-Pakistan relationships were shipwrecked a decade or so later
So, in 1954 Pakistan entered into the Mutual Defence Assistance Agreement with the United States A few years later
PAKISTAN AND THE WORLD -| 59
Pakistan also entered into the SAETO and CENTO alliances which were sponsored by the USA as its defence perimeter around the Communist Bloc
But these Alliances proved to be of no avail to Pakistan, when India attacked it in 1965, and again in 1971 during IndoPakistan Wars Instead, the USA and her Western allies cut off all aid, military and economic, to Pakistan for resisting Indian aggression Thus Pakistan was left alone by its ”friends and allies” to lick its wounds It had however, withdrawn from the SEATO, though not from the CENTO because of Iran and Turkey, its two closest associates in the Muslim World
Since 1971, the Western Aid-to-Pakistan Consortium countries stopped all economic and financial aid and assistance to Pakistan However, the USA is providing some aid in commodities to Pakistan on bilateral basis, such as wheat under PL-480 agreements The USA has also provided funds for the Tarbela Dam by an agreement signed in 1973
After Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in December, 1979, the USA realized the strategic importance of a Pakistan It became a conduit for the American, Western and other countries, economic and military aid to Afghan Mujahideen fighting against the Russians in Afghanistan In this respect, the American shoulder-launched Stringer missiles proved very effective against Soviet aircrafts and helicopters bombing Mujahideen positions At last the Soviets withdrew its troops from Afghanistan on February 15, 1989
U.S.A. becomes unipolar Superpower: Cold war had raged between America and Soviet Union for about fifty years since the end of the Second World War (1939-45) But when Mikhail Gorbachov became President of the Soviet Union in 1985, it began to disintegrate and finally ceased to exist in 1991 With the demise of the Soviet Union, the United States became the sole or unipolar super-power It then adopted several measures against Pakistan An Arserican Senator named Larry Pressler, introduced an Amendment in 1985 It was a nuclear weapon non-proliferating law to check specifically the making of nuclear weapons by Pakistan According to it if the American president certified that a country was making nuclear weapons, America will cut off all economic and military aid of Pakistan As the Soviets left Afghanistan in 1989, US President Bush in 1990 issued a certificate to U S Congress declar.ng that Pakistan possessed nuclear weapons Therefore all American economic and military aid here to Pakistan was stopped Amenca refused to deliver the military aid whose price Pakistan had already Paid m dollars Thus 28 F-16 aircrafts, three anti-submarine and °ther military spare equipment for which Pakistan has already paid °28 million dollars, were not handed over to Pakistan under tr”

160
CIVICS OF PAKISTAN
Pressler Amendment. At the same time, America training of Pakistani air crews and ground personal in America was als< stopped.
U.S. Discriminatory Treatment: America has adopted discriminatory non-proliferation policy with regard to India

1974, when it first exploded its nuclear device. According tc American experts, India has already made sixty nuclear weapons. As against Indian preparations Pakistan started its nuclear programme several years after India, and has only six nuclear weapons. Moreover, its nuclear weapons were of old type, while India is developing more powerful nuclear bombs. In spite of it, Pakistan was accused by America and other western countries of manufacturing Islamic Bomb, as if it was more deadly than he more powerful Indian nuclear bomb. It has also launched a missile building programme. It has already built Aakash, Prithvi and Agni missiles.
Moreover, on American demand, Pakistan Government capped i.e., stopped, its nuclear weapon programme. But America never made the same demand on India, whole nuclear weapon programme has continued without any interruption or stoppage.
Owing to Kashmir people uprising, India accuses Pakistan of sending. Freedom fighters into Kashmir and threatened to teach a lesson to Pakistan. At this President Bush threatened Pakistan to be declared a terrorist state along with Libya, Iran and other countries. But Pakistan denied that it had sent freedom-fighters into Kashmir. Kashmir uprising was strictly indigenous. However, American leaders have now themselves realized that Kashmiris have revolted against Indian atrocities. The threat to declare Pakistan a terrorist state was not carried out.
Since 1993, when Clinton, came to power, his Administration adopted less discriminatory policy towards Pakistan. It criticised Indian nuclear and missile programmes. It also returned the money which Pakistan had paid for F-16 aircrafts after selling them to some other country. The American World Trade Centre of New York was destroyed on September 11, 2001 and its responsibility was put on the AI-Qaeda led by Osama bin Laden who was at that time in the fold the Taliban. The U.S.A. declared an anti-terrorism war across the world and first of all invaded upon Afghanistan in December

2001. Pakistan was asked to become an ally of the international coalition against terrorism which it did and thus became a frontline state. General Musharraf was greatly admired by President George W. Bush of the U.S A. during his visit of the States in July, 2003 for his daring steps in curbing terrorism.
PAKISTAN AND THE WORLD 161
RUSSIAN FEDERATION
Decline and fall of the Soviet Union: The decline of the Soviet Union began when Mikhail Gorbachev came to power in 1985 with his policies of restructuring (perestroika) and liberalisation (glasnost) of the authoritarian system of the Soviet Government. First the East European countries, e.g. Poland, Checkoslovkia, Hungary, three Baltic Republics and Romania, became independent states Then from 1989 onwards, various republics of the Soviet Union, such as Ukraine, Belarus, Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, the Central Asian Republics of Kazakhstan, Karghizstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan, seceded and became independent, sovereign states. In 1991, Soviet Union itself ceased to exist and its remaining Russian Republic became the Russian Federation as a noncommunist, democratic state, with Moscow as its capital.
Anti-Pakistan Policy: Soviet Union was unfriendly towards Pakistan. It helped India in its hostility towards Pakistan. At first, Russian federation expressed friendly feelings but soon after the new Russian leaders, such as President Boris Yeltsin, became as hostile towards Pakistan as the Soviet Union was in the past. In a speech before Indian Parliament in January, 1993, Boris Yeltsin declared, ”we sustain the Indian position on Kashmir”. Then India and Russia launched a new era of military cooperation with an agreement signed on 28 January, 1993, guaranteeing supplies of military spaces, warfare systems and the resumption of military training projects, suspended after the December 1991 break up of the Soviet Union. The USA objected to it. Russian Government provided rocket engines to India for Indian aerospace projects. Russia also supplied components and software for Indian air defence and for military communication systems. Soviet Union helped Pakistan to build a Steel Mills near Karachi during the cold war period. After its dismemberment, a slight tilt towards normally is seen. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and then recently President General Musharraf visited the Kremlin. It early 2003, the foreign minister of the Russian federation visited Pakistan Both the countries have one common factor in their foreign policy to curb terrorism.

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