Pakistan-GCC Relationship: Reframing Policy Trajectories

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Abstract

For some time, Pakistan’s Gulf policy has largely focused on upholding cultural and religious ties, rather than building sustainable economic linkages. Though energy resources have been prioritised, overall efforts towards improving economic ties with the Gulf have been lacklustre. Given the present global economic crunch, if Pakistan’s underutilised economic card is used wisely, it could give the Pakistani economy much-needed reprieve. This article briefly outlines the nature of Pakistan’s relations with the GCC. Then it will continue on to argue that Pakistan should shift from a more strategic/political relation to a more economic-based one with all of the GCC since economic interdependence is more sustainable. By revitalising trade with all the GCC countries, improving the system of remittances and maintaining neutrality on all fronts, the state of Pakistan can help to steer its economy and could gain immense economic benefits out of the present turbulent economic situation country is facing.

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