China, Pakistan to speed up cooperation on natural disaster monitoring

China-Pakistan Joint Research Center on Earth Sciences plans to establish a natural disaster observation and research center in the Karakoram Mountains. Mr. Hong Tianhua, Executive Director of the Joint Research Center, shared this news during a recent panel meeting with China-SCO Geosciences Cooperation Research Center and the All-Pakistan Chinese Enterprises Association (APCEA) in Islamabad.

“The research center in Pakistan, to be completed in Passu, GB within 3 years, will monitor glacial lake outbursts, glacier debris flow, and landslides by analyzing the data of glaciers, snow cover, meteorology, hydrology and soil”, Mr. Hong Tianhua added.

China-Pakistan Joint Research Center on Earth Sciences, established by Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) and Higher Education Commission of Pakistan, serves as a bridge for bilateral cooperation on such areas as natural disasters, ecological environment, resource development and sustainable development of CPEC.

Last year, in the fight against the floods, the CPEC multi-factor database and data management and information service system of the Joint Research Center played an indispensable role by sharing 26 data sets regarding the deluge.

Building on it, the Joint Research Center will also set up a Digital CPEC platform this year, Mr. Hong Tianhua told the audience.

“The Digital CPEC platform will support the acquisition, preservation, sharing and utilization of data on ecological environment and disaster prevention and reduction of CPEC”, he added.

Geological cooperation is incorporated in the China-Pakistan Joint Statement signed in Nov. 2022. Against the backdrop of evolving climate change, it is becoming ever more imperative for countries to join hands in geological research. For China and Pakistan, the momentum is pacing up.

Permanent Secretary He Zhixin of China-SCO Geosciences Cooperation Research Center said that the Center has signed five agreements with Pakistan and carried out cooperation in terms of comparative studies of basic geology, construction and sharing of geological database for environmental geology and hydrogeology, geological sample analysis techniques and other areas of mutual interest.

More than 100 young technicians have been trained through various forms such as technical training courses, jointly implemented projects, academic education and visiting scholar programs, he shared.

“In the next step, we will work together with China-Pakistan Joint Research Center on Earth Sciences to deepen practical cooperation with Pakistan in the field of geoscience”, he said.

At the meeting, China-SCO Geosciences Cooperation Research Center and China-Pakistan Joint Research Center on Earth Sciences donated a book entitled Pakistan in the Eyes of Geologists to APCEA. According to APCEA chairman Mr. Yang Jianduo, the book, published in January 2023, allows readers to gain deeper insights into Pakistan by taking them from the south all the way to the north of Pakistan along with the geological investigators. The book will also be translated into English and Urdu to enable more readers to have a better understanding of the resource-rich land.