China’s “One Belt, One Road” plan envisions the construction of a vast trans-continental web of new overland and seaborne routes and other infrastructure projects across Eurasia. In Beijing’s ambitious vision, this New Silk Road will connect 63 countries and transform the way two-thirds of the world’s population interacts economically and politically.
The foundations of China’s vision are now being laid in Pakistan. Leaders in Islamabad and Beijing have said the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) will generate economic benefits in both countries and deepen their strategic alliance. The proposed $42 billion CPEC network of roads, railways, pipelines and other infrastructure projects is supposed to open previously isolated areas to commerce and make the whole of Central Asia more accessible to foreign investment.
What are the expectations in China and Pakistan for CPEC? What are the domestic and geopolitical calculations shaping China’s growing linkages with Pakistan and its overall vision for Eurasia? How might China’s deepening involvement in Pakistan affect its internal development and stability, and what are the potential implications of CPEC for security in the Persian Gulf and the Indo-Pacific?
On November 18th, Hudson Institute hosted a conversation on China-Pakistan relations in the era of the New Silk Road with an expert panel featuring Hudson fellows Aparna Pande, Charles Horner, Lianchao Han, and Eric Brown.