Pakistan foreign policy
is responsible for creating relations with other states however it is faced
with many challenges today.
This paper will explore
the challenges faced by Pakistan foreign policy.
All states in the world
are independent and sovereign, but they must cultivate relations with other states.
These relations must be based on some principles, steps and ways and means- it
is foreign policy.
No country in the world
can live in isolation. Hence, in the interdependent world foreign policy is
like a ship with radar which drifts aimlessly in the water, therefore foreign
policy is responsible for sound strong and cemented relations among the comity
“Foreign policy consists of the different
measures which states take to promote protect and preserve their interest not
only externally but internally as well”
So, sum up we can say
that foreign policy is a policy which deals with the external relation of states
based on the internal aspiration of the people.
Challenges of Pakistan Foreign Policy:
Following are the challenges that are faced by
Pakistan Foreign Policy:
· The US foreign policy under Donald Trump.
· The nature of Chinese foreign policy.
· Break the isolation imposed by India.
· Whether CPEC is enough to boast of?
· Pakistan’s foreign policy is its crippling
economy based on poor foreign trade.
US foreign policy under Donald Trump:
The first challenge
concerns the US foreign policy under Donald Trump. Obama’s tilt towards India,
economically as well as strategically, had disturbed the strategic balance in
South Asia. Moreover, his administration granted too much leverage to India in
the post-withdrawal period in Afghanistan. This resulted in Indo-Afghan-US
triangular alliance that hurt Pakistan’s interests in the region. The US
administration under Trump will be a testing time for both the nations.
In 2017, Pakistan’s
Foreign Office has a challenge for the next four years to deal with Trump. How
to make Pakistan more attractive for economic investment, foreign aid and
assistance for carrying out war on terror depends on how Foreign Office plays
its cards efficiently.
The nature of Chinese foreign policy:
The second challenge
relates to the nature of Chinese foreign policy. General Xiong Guangkai says:
“Pakistan is China’s Israel.” Pakistan’s role has been central to China’s
transition from a regional to a global power. It is at the heart of Beijing’s
plans for a network of roads, pipelines, railways, energy projects, fiber
optics and ports.
The way China is
proceeding with its various networks in the region, it’s anticipated that in
the next two decades, it will give a doctrine in line with the US “Monroe
Doctrine of 1823”, thereby declaring that this region is the sphere of
influence of China. This will limit the US to the shores of Atlanta and Europe.
Any such futuristic approach of Chinese foreign policy will bind Pakistan
forever. Thus, Pakistan will have a permanent regional bloc which may be
joined, in future, by countries like Russia and Iran.
Break the isolation imposed by India:
The third challenge to
the Pakistan foreign policy in 2017 will be to break the isolation imposed by
India, thereby developing and normalising relations with Afghanistan and Iran.
Afghanistan, under Dr Ashraf Ghani, tried its best to smoothen relations with Pakistan.
But somehow, this could not happen. Pakistan was very late in responding to his
positive overtures. Now, India is right in the heart of Kabul from where it’s
firing shots against Pakistan. “We learn from history that we do not learn from
history” and one of the lessons that we don’t want to learn is that “one can
change friends but not neighbours”. Hence, Pakistan needs to get back
Afghanistan as a friend due to the 2340-km long border; border management
mechanism; cross-border terrorism; common enemies in shape of the Taliban;
economic ties; and stable peace in the region. Peace in Afghanistan is attached
with peace in Pakistan.
Relationship with Iran
will also proceed in the same tone. Iran is also a candidate for the CPEC.
Thus, Iran can be encouraged for having closer relationship with Pakistan
rather than sitting in the lap of India.
Whether CPEC is enough to boast of?
The fourth challenge is
to see whether CPEC is enough to boast of? Ask any one about the foreign policy
of Pakistan and the answer will be CPEC, CPEC and CPEC. Nations form their
foreign policies based on multi-pronged strategies. Yes, CPEC is a great
achievement, but it’s not the foreign policy. Pakistan needs to normalise its
relations with its neighbours, and the US. Pakistan’s role in the UN is going
very slow. This needs to be expedited, especially with the arrival of the new
Secretary General of the UN, António Guterres.
Pakistan’s foreign policy is its crippling
economy based on poor foreign trade:
The fifth and final
challenge that confronts Pakistan’s foreign policy is its crippling economy
based on poor foreign trade. Without any new or creative economic perspective,
Pakistan’s GDP growth rate is sluggishly 4.3 to 4.6 per cent. Pakistan is
addicted to foreign aid and the year 2017 calls for a replacement of foreign
aid by foreign trade. This is possible when we garner courage to say no to the
US foreign assistance and emphasise on purchase of our products on preferential