CPEC Current Affairs - 2020

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China Pakistan: Secure CPEC sea route

In order to secure the CPEC sea route, China and Pakistan have signed a deal to build drones with maximum payload of 480 kg, with top speed of 370 km per hour and can fly up to 20 hours. The drones are called Loong II. These drones are similar to the MQ-9 Reaper drones developed by the US.

Highlights

Pakistan and China have agreed to build 48 drones in the Pakistan soil. The deal is to be implemented by the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex and Aviation Industry Corp of China. This deal is considered to be the biggest drone sale of China to any country. Pakistan is already operating Loong I drone. China has sold Loong I drones to other countries as well. It includes Kazakhstan, Indonesia and United Arav Emirates

Global Concerns

China is building its counter drone systems and laser weapons largely as it tries to catch US on UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) Technology. These technologies focus on spoofing techniques that prevent sending false information to UAVs. Together China and Russia are in arms race with the United States. There are concerns raised by number of countries about the trade war, repeated sanctions, imposition of taxes, space race and arms race between the countries.

India Concerns

CPEC (China Pakistan Economic Corridor), a major part of China’s BRI project passes through the Pakistan Occupied Kashmir region. India is concerned about the countries strengthening security in the region. With series of attacks and tensions between the India and Pakistan namely Pulwama, Balkot strikes, Abrogation of Article 370, etc, India sees the current move as a tension addend.

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Pakistan PM on a three-day visit to China – To take up J&K issue; To engage in high level talks – oil, hydropower, steel

PM Imran Khan will arrive in Beijing on 8th October, 2019. He will engage China at the highest level of talks. It includes projects in hydro power, steel mills and oil refinery that are part of the 60 billion USD CPEC – China – Pakistan Economic Corridor. He will also hold talks with Chinese top leaders and discuss about the stalled CPEC projects.

PM is visiting the country for the third time since he took over in August 2018. The visit acquires significance as it comes days ahead of India – China informal summit.

CPEC that passes through Pakistan occupied Kashmir connecting China’s Xinjiang province with the strategic Gwadar port of Balochistan is the flagship project of BRI – Belt Road Initiative. India gained strong opposition from Pakistan and China on diluting Article 370. It is expected that the Pakistani leader will take up the Kashmir issue during his visit.

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