Pakistan’s port of Gwadar has long been identified as a suitable base for Chinese People’s Liberation Army Navy’s (PLAN) military operations. In 2019, Pakistan officially handed over the port to China. Beijing has been seen using the port of Gwadar more than once before to monitor India. News ANI.
The China Maritime Studies Institute of Naval War College in the United States recently published a report titled ‘Gwadar: China’s Strong Strategic Position in Pakistan’. It paints a picture of how China is using the port to fulfill its military aspirations. The report says that the Chinese Communist Party has a “strategically strong position” in managing foreign ports. According to him, Chinese companies strategically build terminals and commercial zones in foreign ports so that the country’s military can use them. Of course, high-level coordination between Chinese officials, state-owned enterprises and private companies makes the idea work.
Following such a ‘strong strategic idea’, China has expanded its supply network, logistical support and intelligence network to this Pakistani port in the Indian Ocean.
According to the report, Gwadar is important to Beijing for two reasons. First, it is establishing a direct transport link in the Indian Ocean through the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPC). China has not invested in this port to get financial returns, because it is a strategic investment. Second, Gwadar is helping to anchor or stabilize western Chinese ships.
The port of Gwadar is located at the mouth of the Persian Gulf and just outside the Strait of Hormuz. About 20 percent of the world’s oil enters and exits through the Strait of Hormuz. Gwadar is only 400 km away from this important system. About 40 percent of China’s imported oil flows through it. China has the right to operate the port of Gwadar for 40 years. This has created huge military opportunities for China. China will now have access to the Gulf countries and the possibility of establishing a naval base in the Arabian Sea in the future for the country. China has been involved in financing and building the port since 2002. The activities of this port started in 2006. There is a 3,000-kilometer route from the port of Gwadar to the northwestern Chinese city of Kashgar to transport oil to the Middle East.
Beijing is using the port, located near the Pakistani province of Balochistan, to increase its naval power there. China is going to use the port of Gwadar as its naval base. Some recent satellite images show that China has chosen the Pakistani port of Gwadar to increase its power in the Indian Ocean.