From Russia, with love

While Pakistan and the United States are not enjoying good relations, Russia has offered to become our new friend.

Zafar.Bhutta July 03, 2012
At a time when Pakistan and the United States are not enjoying good relations, due to stoppage of the Nato supply routes, Russia has come up with a plan to provide Pakistan financial and technical assistance, needed for its energy problems such as the Tajikistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-Iran (TAPI) pipeline project, the Iran-Pakistan (IP) gas pipeline and the (CASA-1000) power import project.

Is it a revival of relations between Pakistan and Russia to recover the trust lost during the war in Afghanistan in Ziaul Haq’s era? Whatever may be the reason; Russian cooperation with Pakistan will not only revive relations but will also balance Pakistan’s foreign policy.

Russia is a new friend, initiating to help Pakistan overcome its dilemma of energy shortage. The problem of energy crisis in Pakistan is a mammoth one and we should welcome all help, including Russia’s, for extending support for long-term gas and power import projects planned to avoid energy failures in the years to come.

Russia has offered to make available $500 million for the CASA-1000 MW power import project, to establish a power transmission system from Kyrgyz Republic and Tajikistan to Afghanistan and Pakistan. The offer came during a meeting of a six-member delegation of the Russian Federation.

China and Russia are the only countries who have expressed an interest to support the Iran-Pakistan (IP) gas pipeline project despite pressure from the US that wants this project to be shelved due to its tense relations with Iran.

Pakistan’s entire energy system is predicted to collapse in case there is no more gas by 2020. Local gas production is projected to decline to 2.26 billion cubic feet gas per day (bcfd) in 2020-21, against the current 4.17 bcfd production.  Gas pipeline projects are economically feasible as imported gas would provide cheaper electricity to overcome loadshedding, the likes of which we are witnessing. The power shortfall reaches 8,000 megawatt in peak seasons and one bcfd Iranian gas can produce 5,000 MW of electricity. So, we need planning to arrange gas from different sources and IP and TAPI are the best available options to avoid the energy system from collapsing in the future. We should welcome the Russian offer of financing these power projects to overcome the energy crisis.

Read more by Zafar here

Facebook Conversations

COMMENTS (15)

Anoop | 8 years ago | Reply | Recommend @Bam Margera: "Isn’t America going to impose sanctions on India for building a port in Iran and a railway line from Iran to Afghanistan?" Very good question. 1) Port and most of the railway line and road into Afghanistan from Iran is already built. It is operational and India is using it big time. So, no point with the sanctions. 2) American president has the authority to waive the sanctions on any country. I don't think they will even think of sanctioning India for something which ultimately helps Afghanistan. "Why do you always have to drag religion into everything, you don’t see any Pakistani commenters here so far bring religion up, only you and the other Indian commenter here have brought it up." Did I? I was just noting the irony that in spite of all the talk of the Ummah, support for Muslim causes like Kashmir and Palestine, it evaporates when it is too convenient like in the case of Uighur Muslims with China and now Xinjiang with Russia. I do bring up Religion, so did Mahatma Gandhi(Not that I am comparing myself being like the great man). That doesn't make me a Religious bigot. "You say India is going to be a superpower, well that’s an over-statement, but it’s quite common to hear Indians boast about how great India is and it’s going to be a “superpower”." Well, its inevitable now. Just look at history as guidance. http://peddarowdy.wordpress.com/2012/06/16/the-britishers-came-here-too-loot-so-did-everyone-else/ For the better part of the last 2 millennium, not centuries India had the BIGGEST GDP in the World. India will just go back to normal. As they say History repeats. A lot of people have said a lot of things about India. Both good and bad. India, the elephant, has gone on with its own pace. Reducing poverty from 80% to 50% from 1947 to 1990. Then, suddenly picking up from 1991 onwards to now, halving the poverty according to UN. Experts in Goldman Sachs and Citi group are predicting India will be among the 3 biggest economies by 2040, it already is in PPP terms. But, one thing is India will still remain poor despite achieving super power status. So, you can stay happy by pointing out India's poverty figures. India's problems will take a few decades to fix, but the good thing is it is working on it, a viable system is in place with a great Constitution. It is possible to exercise a large amounts of influence over the World and have problems in your country. Look at India now, in 2010(or was it 2011, I forget), India is the only country in the world where all P5 power premiers visited one nation on bilateral visits. India is already exercising so much power, which will only increase as days goes by and economy grows leaps and bounds. Cheers.
Bam Margera | 8 years ago | Reply | Recommend @Anoop: That's pretty typical of you. Isn't America going to impose sanctions on India for building a port in Iran and a railway line from Iran to Afghanistan?You even mentioned it in your blog. Why do you always have to drag religion into everything, you don't see any Pakistani commenters here so far bring religion up, only you and the other Indian commenter here have brought it up. Every country has national interests, and so does Pakistan, we should have good bilateral relations with Russia and every country, despite the fact the Russians supported India in 1971. You say India is going to be a superpower, well that's an over-statement, but it's quite common to hear Indians boast about how great India is and it's going to be a "superpower". Here's why India might never become a superpower: http://open.salon.com/blog/seanpaulkelley/2009/03/26/reflectionsonindia
VIEW MORE COMMENTS
Replying to X

Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.

For more information, please see our Comments FAQ