The promise held out by the Chinese Ambassador Sun Weidong that aid and assistance to Pakistan to grapple with the energy shortage will be provided is welcome. He was pleased at the prospect of Mian Nawaz Sharif’s forthcoming trip to China; he said it would foster such cooperation.

Such rescue gestures, albeit as loans, not necessarily grants, are a reason why the Pakistani people view China as such a valuable friend. But we should not always anticipate being spoon-fed, now it is up to us also to at least make a sterling undertaking to move towards achieving the tremendous feats that Beijing has been able to accomplish. Areas where our friend has already achieved success would definitely make it easier for it to offer its expertise to us like for instance the hydel and coal fields. What it has achieved from hydel energy, no one can deny. The Three Gorges Dam is doing miracles and so are its coal reserves. We do have plenty of water sites up the Indus where reservoirs can be built and can generate sufficient hydel power but absolutely seems no way anyone of us is interested in developing it. And in Thar coal reserves, which are thought to be safest for energy consumption by experts are also lying untapped. That is where the Chinese technological support can come handy but it all boils down to how serious we are in changing ourselves. Since we are still confused about whether we should have Kalabagh Dam or not, there does not appear much hope for salvation.

It surely is encouraging to note that Prime Minister Mian Nawaz in his first state trip, -- an embodiment of ‘look-east policy’ religiously pursued by one former Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz --  would seek Beijing’s expertise in the construction of 1,100MW nuclear power plant. He should also bring about utilisation of our indigenous coal and hydel resources, which irrefutably are the optimum means of economical and abundant electricity. The successful energy model is something we should immediately embark upon.