The visit of the Saudi Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman (MBS) has been welcomed across Pakistan. The essence of the ties between the two nations was reflective in the speech by the Crown Prince. A traditional ally recognised the importance of Pakistan’s geostrategic position in the upcoming years, especially due to the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) which will make Pakistan a pathway for greater trade in the region, all the way to Europe. There is not a better way to strengthen bilateral ties than to invest in economies which are moving forward with such a grand vision. This is why the Crown Prince also emphasised the need to commit to the promises being made because the future of both countries depends on it.

MBS highlighted how the current Pakistani leadership has played a vital role in the recent development. The election of Prime Minister (PM) Imran Khan has certainly improved the soft power of Pakistan. With a history of international fame, PM Khan is known to woo people due to his unfaltering belief in human development. We have witnessed the manifestation of this in the form of Prince MBS announcing the release of 2000 Pakistani prisoners in Saudi prisons along with a commitment to work towards increasing tourism to 100,000 people per year. He also pointed out the five percent increase in the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in Pakistan, which is favourable in terms of foreign direct investment. This is a push to invest in the Pakistani economy, which our ally Saudi Arabia has done and pledged to do so more yearly in several sectors of the economy.

Pakistan is the first country that Crown Prince MBS is visiting in the region. They have a larger vision for the East along with the Middle East. MBS pointed out Pakistan’s importance by emphasising that his visit to Pakistan as the first country signifies his interest in becoming part of the futuristic vision which encompasses Pakistan holistically. This is a great achievement on the diplomatic front. Since the election of President Donald Trump in the USA, Pakistan has been struggling to gain its relevance which now has been ensured by the inception of CPEC along with regional allies showing interest in investing in the economy. The government now needs to focus on stabilising the local economy to ensure revenue generation from domestic fronts.