CPEC and Chinese Economic Expansionism

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Iftikhar Ahmed Baloch‏
After communist revolution under leadership of Mao Tse-Tung, China followed the planned economic code but later it fell prey to the Stalinist style bureaucracy in subsequent decades which kept the Chinese economy stagnant. With the advent of 21st century China by forsaking the traditional communist economy turned into a neo-capitalist economy. According to the figures 80% of jobs today in China are provided by private sector. National institutions till 1998 had 68.8 % share in economy but it has reduced to 40 % today. The facts shows that China is no more a communist state, it has turned into a mammoth neo-imperial state and following its imperialistic agenda in each nock and corner of the globe.
Balochistan has been indirect bone of contention for the past imperial powers in the age of colonization for its strategic location and in recent past for its economic resources. And every international power has been and even today is dependent on the two factors abovementioned for increasing their power. China is no exception; she is also looking for such opportunities in the region to strengthen its economic and political influence. China unlike its major rival, USA, is not meddling in the politics to a larger extent but is doing a lot to dominate the world in economic domain and has been successful so far.

Also read: Economic Corridor and Local Apprehensions

Recent Chinese investment of 46 billion dollars, biggest overseas investment of China, hit the headlines globally and promises were made to Pakistan and especially Balochistan that streams of milk and honey will flow in their land and the gullible Balochistan government is again showing dreams of skyscrapers cities on the both sides of corridor as they were shown in 60s after the RCD.

China is no more a communist state, it has turned into a mammoth neo-imperial state and following its imperialistic agenda

China will not benefit Balochistan by its investment in CPEC but it will use the land for strengthening its regional strategic dominance, minimize its trade cost, and to exploit its natural resources.
The ambition of CPEC is economic in nature but China will use it for its dominance in the region. The Chinese strategic rival America who by its political and military agenda has been ruling the world but China is not interfering in political domain and wants to conquer the world economically. Along with the dominance in region China wants to prove its strong friendly relations with Pakistan. According to guardian “China wants to make Pakistan its partner in its regional and economic strategic institutions”.
According to the theory “string of pearls” propagated by US defense ministry, China have intentions to strengthen herself on all Eastern maritime chokes such as Strait of Malacca, Mandab and Hormuz. By moving westwards China is trying to shift its power from South to West in Arabian Sea and the Persian Gulf for which she is making economic and strategic efforts. The greatest option to fulfill its agenda is none other than Gwadar where China will soon build a naval base.
 Second, the CPEC is aimed to reduce the travel time and cost for China. China spends 18 billion dollars annually to import oil from Middle East. Chinese ships navigate 9912 miles via Strait of Malacca but the Kashghar-Gwadar route will reduce the total transit time to one third. If China passes half of its exports through CPEC it will have profit of 6 million dollars daily. Who is benefited the most from CPEC; Pakistan, Balochistan or China?

If China passes half of its exports through CPEC it will have profit of 6 million dollars daily

Finally, the pseudo-communist regime is following the path of economic imperialism, for the purpose it is shortening its trade routes with the aim of high-swift profits with efficiency. China is taking control of all important trade routes. The announcement of building 50 billion dollars canal is not the result of “brotherly relations” with Nicaragua but in competition with US influenced Panama Canal to accommodate extra-large bulk cargo ships to the west.
 “China is new imperialist in town” it is investing trillions of dollars abroad especially in the areas where west has less influence. China is Africa’s biggest business partner. It is building infrastructure in return plundering their natural resources. China has built a city with cost of 3.5 billion dollars from scratch in Angola and also recently completed a major port of 10 billion in Tanzania. These African nations don’t have “historical brotherly relations” with China as Pakistan does have but the intentions are broadly to build infrastructure to plunder their unexplored underground natural resources. The aim of neo-capitalist is instinctive exploitation which is to grab the wealth in the name of development which has been practiced by its predecessors in past. The developing nations are keeping their natural resources mortgage in the name of infrastructure building. Ecuador owes China more than 7 billion dollars which is more than 10th of its GDP. Thus, in return Ecuador is planning to give 8.1 million hectares of Amazon rainforest to China for its debt. According to the former energy minister for Ecuador “China is shopping worldwide for natural resources where in the midst of commodity accumulation by them” Balochistan is rich in natural resources and China wants to strengthen its paws on Balochistan. It is worth mentioning here that the CPEC is planned as economic strategy of China and is important part of Chinese national 13th five year development plan.
In summary, China is no more a socialist oriented economy. It is following the path of exploitation on the tradition of take for a ride. Balochistan is one of the vulnerable rich and nearest country to feed the economic expansionism of China with its rich mineral resources, strategic location and the part of pathway to help China to conquer the markets of west.
Disclaimer: Views expressed in this column are those of the Author and Balochistan Voices not necessarily agrees with them.
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