As part of its ongoing ‘In Conversation With’ series, the Centre for Security, Strategy and Policy Research (CSSPR) hosted a lecture on ‘Pakistan-China Relations: Present, Past and Future’ on April 5, 2018. The presenter was Assistant Professor, Dr Ghulam Ali, from the Department of Political Science, Sichuan University of Science and Engineering, Zigong, China. He is believed to be the only Pakistani scholar who has written a scholarly book on China – Pakistan Relations: A Historical Analysis (Karachi: Oxford University Press, 2017). Mr Nazir Hussain, Director External Affairs, UOL, SISS staff and students was the audience for the lecture.
To Dr. Ghulam, it was only the commonality of interests that makes Pakistan-China relationship deeper. “Sans commonality of national interests, these two countries do not have much in common—their people belong to different races with dissimilarities in religion, culture and language. Likewise, people-to-people connection has also been very less despite the geographic proximity due to these dissimilarities especially the language barrier.” He observed.
He provided a historical analysis of Pakistan-China relations since 1949 when Pakistan recognized China. He said the role of Pakistan leadership is a key factor in the success of CPEC projects. Mr. Nazir Hussain also shared his views on the subject saying that there was need to view CPEC from the wider lens of the Belt and Road project. Students had an opportunity to ask relevant questions and appropriate answers were ably given to them by the presenter.