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Pakistan in 21st Century and Challenges Ahead
Pakistan is land of great opportunities, but until this day, it has not been able to fulfill its potential; located in one of the most important geographical point on earth. As it is neighbor to countries which are having a say in global affairs, that are both China and India. While the nature has blessed Pakistan with regional connectivity, resource endowments and soft power strengths – importantly thought it has religious and cultural links with Central Asian countries on its north and the region itself is point of great competition for energy starved countries of the globe. But why have not Pakistan been able to reach its true potential? Well, there can be many variants of the answer as to why it is not where It should have been but there are two main possible answer to not so difficult question. To some extent It has been a victim of a geography – located in geography which is considered as one of the most dangerous on earth – courtesy due to the competition of regional players. Chief of those are India, China and Pakistan and the South Asian region has been badly hurt, furthermore, Afghan war has aggravated the competition greatly, notwithstanding the potential for cooperation between the regional and global players there.
A Book By: Christrophe Jaffrelot
The region suffered three big wars and many proxies that are incessant to this day; one was Sino-India war of 1962 and others have been between two ever fierce rivals India and Pakistan. The latter is however also linked to Central Asia geographically and to Middle East culturally and religiously. As the Kaplan would call it – the revenge of geography location in the South Asian region, which is considered one of most backward region coupled with the instability, terrorism and partly due to its own grave mistakes of epic proportion. However, the dream of a prosperous Pakistan is still a possibility given its enormous richness in almost every field.
It’s a country of more than $30 trillion resource endowed economy appraised at the current market prices; surprisingly with no value addition in product sector, which is approximately double the size of US GDP. Now, here comes the most exciting point of the whole equation that is, if Pakistan is able to acquire value added entrepreneurial knowledge, interactive marketing skills, innovation in product and the finely tuned entrepreneurial practices developed countries have so far achieved. Owing to that, It could easily be among the world’s top economies.
Nawaz regime is always considered business friendly; ministers keep telling entrepreneurs that Pakistan is safe haven for their businesses seeking sustainable and profitable destination for diversifying their portfolio. Furthermore, recently announced China Pakistan economic corridor (CPEC) is believed to be game changer within the regional context, quite understandably, its economy is going to boom exponentially. The minister of Planning, Development and Reforms Chaudhry Ahsan Iqbal said that this economic corridor is going to transform Pakistan and China from strategic partnership to strategic economic partnership and that Pakistan going to be Asian tiger – a dream yet to be realized.
Director of business development at Synergies Worldwide, Edward Hertzman, a global apparel sourcing company, said that doing business in Pakistan costs 25% less than doing business in China and about 15% cheaper than other countries. This is ample proof for the modern entrepreneurship to invest in Pakistan and avail the potential growth which could be astronomical.