Energy & Environment Energy Transitions Pakistan South Asia

Issue Brief

March 28, 2022

Pakistan: The next great infrastructure connector

By Ali Jehangir Siddiqui

Pakistan sits at the crossroads of the abundant resources of Central Asia and the Middle East, and the lucrative markets of China and India. It therefore has the potential to play a significant connecting role, one that enables broader regional interdependency while boosting domestic economic prospects. Several projects in infrastructure and energy in recent years have already laid the groundwork for this transformation.

But more can be done. Pakistan’s network, though rapidly advancing, is not yet ready to take on these responsibilities. However, there are considerable opportunities; from energy transportation and roadbuilding to digital connectivity and rail access, if Pakistan pursues significant infrastructure improvements, it has a chance to assume the mantle of the region’s great connector.

Meet the author

Ambassador Ali Jehangir Siddiqui

Ali J. Siddiqui is a Board Member of the Atlantic Council. He has previously served as Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United States and Special Assistant to the Prime Minister of Pakistan with the status of Minister of State. 

Prior to public service, Siddiqui founded JS Bank in Pakistan and spent his earlier professional career as a venture capitalist in Hong Kong. In partnership with other entrepreneurs he built Airblue which is Pakistan’s second largest airline and AGSI, the second largest steel producer in the United Arab Emirates.

He received his B.A. in Economics from Cornell University and was selected as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum in 2014.

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The Institute of Chinese Studies seeks to promote interdisciplinary study and research on China and the rest of East Asia with a focus on expertise in China’s domestic politics, international relations, economy, history, health, education, border studies, language and culture, and on India-China comparative studies. 

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