When we talk about China’s relations with neighboring countries, its relations with Pakistan are the closest and friendliest. Pakistan and China has established diplomatic relations back in 1951. This made Pakistan one of the first Islamic countries as well as the second country in South Asia after India to establish diplomatic relations with China. Both Nations have continued to be strong allies ever since. The intimacy of the relationship between the two countries can be understood from major bilateral interactions over the years. For example, in the Indo-Pakistani wars of 1965 and 1971, China showed full support for Pakistan. In addition, China always comes up as a helping hand for Pakistan in times of need. The recent assistance amid covid 19 was a gesture of love and affection for the people of Pakistan. The two countries enjoy close cooperation in areas such as trade, defense, regional peace and many others. In recent years, China’s growth across a range of areas has been the focus of increasing international consideration. China is extensively measured to be an emerged power changing the world order and geostrategic dynamics.
Thus, China’s strategic relationship with Pakistan must be understood from an international strategic perspective. Though China-Pakistan relations have continuously been friendly, past collaboration between the two countries was generally at the political and military level with less focus on inclusive social, economic, and cultural exchange. Things have been changed rapidly over the past few years with more focus on social and economic impacts. In May 2013 Chinese Premier Li Keqiang visited Pakistan with an official proposal of the concept of the “China-Pakistan Economic Corridor”, and thus a game changer project been started. The diplomatic mission has always been an imperative foundation to further enhance the previously existing relations between two countries.
The new current Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Mr Nong Rong assumed his charge at the end of Last year. Many media outlets reported that in more than 40 years, for the first time China has chosen a non-career ambassador for Pakistan. Ambassador Nong Rong has spent 29 years serving in foreign trade and economic affairs of China in various dimensions. He was never connected with the Chinese Foreign Office but has marvelous skill of negotiating and understanding trade and economic matters. Ambassador Nong Rong was born in September 1967 in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region located near the Vietnam’s border. He attained degrees of MBA and EMBA, and owns a certificate of International Business Engineer. Before joining his current role, he was serving as Secretary of the CPC Group, Ethnic and Religious Affairs Commissionof Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. He was also Deputy Head of the United Front Work Department of CPC Committee, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region.
On his appointment, various diplomatic sources revealed that Ambassador Nong Rong would deliver much desirable push to the momentous China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project which is a flagship project of its enormous Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), linking China with the entire world through new highways and routes. Ambassador Nong Rong is regarded among close advisors of present Chinese leadership. Last month Chinese Ambassador Nong Rong during a media talk revealed that in the first six months since his posting to Islamabad he got convinced that there is a national harmony in Pakistan on the necessity to complete all CPEC-related development projects timely. He further stated that since his arrival in Pakistan in October last year, several meetings were held with Prime Minister Imran Khan and the army chief and the purpose of these meetings was to repeatedly exchanged views in order to dispel all propaganda as well as for smooth completion of ongoing projects. China and Pakistan are strategic cooperative partners. Pakistan has an important place in chain’s foreign relations. Another aspect where both countries can further work together is to poverty alleviation. Prime Minister Imran Khan himself has frequently highlighted the importance of learning from China’s experience.
Ambassador Nong Rong has full confidence, he expresses it at various occasions that with willpower, and commitment Pakistan can bring the same changes for its people as done by China. This year marks the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Pakistan. Ambassador Nong Rong is fully committed that China will continue to endorse practical cooperation in several fields between the two countries whether it is about sharing experience to curb poverty, adhere to high-quality development of the CPEC, or focusing on supporting the concept of industrialisation and urbanization in Pakistan. Under the command of the Ambassador, being the custodian of Pak china relations cooperation in all spheres will prove to be an evident phenomenon.