Pakistan’s aspirations for oil and gas prospecting off its Makran coast, south-western Balochistan, are diverging from those of China, which has had a nearly two-decade long presence in Gwadar as an infrastructure provider. To turn Gwadar into the petrochemical hub it desires, Pakistan has sought out other benefactors, changing geopolitical equations in the region
The removal of 11 top ministers in the Riyadh government last week by the young crown prince Mohammad bin Salman, is a geopolitical upheaval, the implications are serious. Domestically, the kingdom is seeking to liberalise its conservative society and move away from oil-dependency – evident from the expected listing of its crown jewel Aramco. For India, which imports oil largely from West Asia, instability could cause a spike in prices, leaving less for its ambitious reforms. Globally, there is now space for new alignments – in the Great Power plays, in the Shia-Sunni rivalry, and in the war on terrorism.