2018 will be a challenging year for Pakistan in stabilising relations in its immediate (South Asia) and extended (West Asia) neighbourhoods. Managing the relations with the US and China will also require careful handling. Two domestic factors - forthcoming elections and civil-military relations will further impinge on Pakistan’s foreign policy decision-making process during 2018.
SCO is a “happening” network with so much potential for India, Pakistan and Afghanistan. Both TAPI and CASA 1000 has its source in Central Asia, which forms the bulk of SCO. With China already making a huge investment with its One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative, an innovative project could get the much needed funding for the above two projects relating to gas pipelines and electricity corridor.
Gen Bajwa has been appointed as the new Chief of Pakistan’s Army. His predecessor’s (Gen Raheel Sharif) balance sheet on domestic and external fronts is complex. Though Sharif’s contribution to internal security are eulogised (rightly so on certain crucial issues), for an external observer, especially from India, what he leaves for Gen Bajwa is a tough legacy.
Photo Source: The Express Tribune