Historic Russian Oil Delivery to Pakistan Signifies Strengthened Bilateral Cooperation

Historic Russian Oil Delivery to Pakistan Signifies Strengthened Bilateral Cooperation

In a pivotal moment marking the progression of diplomatic relations between Russia and Pakistan, the first Russian oil consignment reached Karachi Port this past weekend. This delivery coincides with the 75th anniversary of diplomatic ties between the two nations, emphasizing a shift in their traditionally contentious Cold War relationship towards a more positive dynamic. 

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov highlighted this significant transformation in a recent video message, articulating his country’s ambition to fortify its partnership with Pakistan. After decades of cautious diplomacy, these nations are now taking palpable steps to manifest this amicable shift. 

A milestone agreement was signed by Russia and Pakistan in April, resulting in the first Russian oil shipment to Pakistan as part of a pilot project to evaluate the potential benefits of Russian oil for Pakistan. This initial delivery was reportedly obtained at a reduced rate. 

Lavrov praised the Pakistani people’s deep interest and admiration for Russia and its President Vladimir Putin, a sentiment Russia reciprocates. He acknowledged the varied phases of their bilateral relationship across the past 75 years, with Russia maintaining its commitment to Pakistan in all circumstances. 

Lavrov cited past collaborations, such as Soviet involvement in the construction of Pakistan’s largest steel mill in Karachi, the Pakistan Steel Mills, during the 1980s amidst the Afghan conflict. He also mentioned the commissioning of the Guddu Thermal Power Plant, then Pakistan’s largest, as testament to Russia’s longstanding engagement with Pakistan. 

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Lavrov emphasized the current trust-based relationship between Russia and Pakistan, stating, “Together with our Pakistani partners, we stand for shaping a more just and democratic multipolar world order.” He also noted the alignment of Russia’s vision of the world order with the principles of faith, unity, and discipline articulated by Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan. 

Lavrov commended Pakistan’s contributions to the United Nations and its specialized agencies, and its active participation within the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), which significantly contributes to multilateral cooperation in Greater Eurasia. He identified Pakistan as a key international partner in combating transborder crime and terrorism. 

Bilateral trade between the two nations has also seen considerable progress in recent years, with Russia emerging as a significant wheat supplier to Pakistan. In his statement, Lavrov also mentioned that negotiations for collaboration in the oil sector were nearing completion. 

Looking forward, Russia expressed its eagerness to further engage with Pakistan across various sectors such as politics, security, economy, education, and culture, thereby fortifying this mutually beneficial relationship. 

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