Volume #15 - 7.|
CONDUITE DES RELATIONS EXTÉRIEURES
REPRESENTATION DIPLOMATIQUE ET CONSULAIRE
CEYLAN ET PAKISTAN
Note du sous-secrétaire d'Etat aux Affaires extérieures|
pour le secrétaire d'État aux Affaires extérieures
le 13 juin 1949|
MISSION IN PAKISTAN|
If we are to open a Mission in Pakistan, early action is desirable with a view to obtaining accommodation because reports indicate there is a very serious building shortage in that country. Before we instruct the Canadian Trade Commissioner in Karachi to commence any negotiations, the Under-Secretary felt that you would wish to make a report to Cabinet and ensure that there are no objections to our proceeding to obtain an option in the event that a suitable building can be located.
2. To enable you to make this report to Cabinet I attach a departmental memorandum dated July 12 on the subject. The case for establishing such an office is set forth in paragraph 3, perhaps in somewhat greater detail than you will require. The principal arguments are reciprocity, the importance of Pakistan as a Muslim and anti-Communist country, its membership in the Commonwealth, its strategic location and the opportunities for developing Canadian markets in Pakistan.5
[Ottawa], July 12, 1949
ESTABLISHMENT OF MISSION IN PAKISTAN
It was agreed and announced on August 15, 1947, the date on which the new state of Pakistan came into existence, that the governments of Canada and Pakistan would exchange High Commissioners "when this is administratively possible". The announcement went on to say that "as a preliminary step in this direction, it is expected that Trade Commissionerships will be established in each country in the near future."
2. A Canadian Government Trade Commissioner took up his duties in Karachi on September 1, 1947. A Trade Commissioner has not been sent to Canada by Pakistan. However, on April 4, 1949 the Pakistan Government indicated its desire to appoint Mr. Mohammad Ali as its first High Commissioner to Canada. This appointment was agreed to and announced in Karachi on April 8. Mr. Baig came to Ottawa from the Pakistan Embassy in Washington on May 25 to open the mission as Acting High Commissioner. Mr. Mohammad Ali arrived in Ottawa on July 9.
3. The case for opening a Canadian diplomatic mission in Karachi may be set forth as follows:
(a) As we are publicly committed to exchange High Commissioners with Pakistan, and Pakistan has already taken action, it would be discourteous to delay very long before making our reciprocal appointment. Any long delay might be misinterpreted by Pakistan as prejudice in favour of her rival and bigger Commonwealth country, India, where our Office has now been set up for over two years. The United Kingdom and India have, for obvious reasons, had High Commissioners in Pakistan since August 1947; an Australian Office under an Official Secretary was opened in Karachi in March 1948, and an Australian High Commissioner was recently appointed. Pakistan has not yet sent a representative to Canberra because, we understand, of lack of personnel.
(b) Pakistan is by far the largest Muslim state in population (approximately 74,000,000), though not in area, and enjoys a key geographical position as a country with close connections in the Middle East, based on ties of religion and culture, as well as links with and influence in South-East Asia, through the location of East Pakistan.
(c) It is now evident that Pakistan, although a somewhat artificial creation, will survive as a separate state for an indefinite period. Like India, it is now one of the few Asian countries with a strong, stable government. It is anti-Communist in its outlook and should be encouraged in every possible way to resist the spread of Communism both within Pakistan and among its neighbours. We should do our share in maintaining and strengthening the Western influences in Pakistan. Pakistan favours continued membership in the Commonwealth and has advocated closer Commonwealth co-operation and consultation. It has, however, on occasion been critical of what it considers to be lack of support from Commonwealth countries. It is uncertain at present whether Pakistan will continue its present form of membership in the Commonwealth or whether it will follow the example set by India and establish a republic within the Commonwealth. It seems important that we should, by the sending of a High Commissioner, indicate that we attach importance to Pakistan's membership in the Commonwealth and that we do not relegate Pakistan to a less favoured position than India.
(d) Because of the strategic value of Pakistan's location, it would appear that Canada should make some effort to cultivate good relations and to understand Pakistan affairs. Pakistan, particularly West Pakistan and the air bases about Karachi and further north, would have great strategic importance in the event of a war with the Soviet Union. The defence of Pakistan against Soviet pressure on her NorthWest Frontier is of great value to the Western Powers, and might be vital in keeping the Persian Gulf open in the event of war. In addition, as Pakistan has demonstrated her interest in what Canada is doing in the defence field by sending a military mission to Ottawa, it is felt we should do what we can, despite the security difficulties, to develop closer relations in this field.
(e) It would seem important to keep ourselves informed of political, economic and other developments in Pakistan and the alms and problems of her government, partly for the reason given in (d) above. The opening of a mission would seem to be the only way to obtain adequate and systematic reports on Pakistan. For example, on the Kashmir dispute it has been felt that we have been receiving, inevitably, somewhat one-sided accounts from our mission in New Delhi. It is desirable to obtain an understanding of Pakistan's views on her relations with India on Kashmir and other questions, as well as of Pakistan's present tense relations with Afghanistan.
(f) Over a period of time there should be great possibilities for expanding Canadian exports to Pakistan, particularly if the Pakistan Government pursues its declared policy of industrialization. Pakistan, in contrast to India, has enjoyed a favourable trade balance and has recently been in the perhaps unique position of being a net earner of United States dollars. The Pakistan Government, through its officials in Washington, have placed substantial orders for military equipment with Canadian Arsenals Limited. This has occasioned a number of visits to Ottawa by Pakistani missions and officials, including the Ambassador in Washington, and the military mission at present in Ottawa. It seems that Pakistan took the initiative in opening an office here because of its great interest in obtaining military and other supplies from Canada. Their officials have said on several occasions that Pakistan has dollars to spend in North America on munitions and capital goods. The interests of Canadian companies in Pakistan are now not large but may be expected to grow. Pakistan desires to encourage "foreign" investment and apparently would particularly welcome Canadian capital. Pakistan also desires technical assistance from abroad and plans to send personnel to other countries, including Canada, for advanced education, especially technical training.
(g) The Canadian community in Pakistan is at present small, and there are consequently limited consular responsibilities, but the number of Canadians is likely to increase, especially if business with Pakistan grows.
4. It is thought that, owing to conditions in Karachi, including the problems of day-to-day housekeeping or administrative work in an Eastern country, the need for special summer leave because of the climate, as well as the division of the country into two regions, our mission should have the following Canadian personnel:
5. Approximately $35,000 is available in the Estimates for the opening of an Office in Karachi during the financial year ending March 31, 1950. This should, of course, be regarded as an appropriation for operation during part of a year only. (These Estimates have not yet been voted by Parliament: during Interim Supply about half of $35,000 would be available.)
6. As Karachi only recently became a national capital, and has had an enormous increase in population as a result of the war and the creation of the new state, accommodation of all kinds is exceedingly difficult to obtain. A number of diplomatic missions already in Karachi have apparently not been able to obtain more than a very few rooms in the principal hotel for both living and office purposes. However, our Trade Commissioner in Karachi has reported recently on plans to build new office premises and residential bungalows. He is being encouraged to endeavour to have suitable office and living quarters for the Canadian staff of a mission earmarked for our future use, in the building projects now being planned, without as yet making any definite commitments. It is still uncertain what accommodation would be immediately available for a mission in the next few months.
7. When we send a High Commissioner to Karachi, Ceylon will be the only member-nation of the Commonwealth in which Canada will not be represented. On May 6, 1948 Cabinet decided, for the time being, against having our High Commissioner in New Delhi jointly accredited to Colombo. Because of Ceylon's relatively minor importance in Commonwealth and world affairs, it is probably unnecessary for us to take any initiative now, and we can await a move from the Ceylonese authorities. Owing to their lack of personnel and limited resources, an approach from Ceylon seems unlikely for some time, though our action on Pakistan may perhaps prompt Ceylon to initiate an exchange of High Commissioners.
5 Sanctionée par le Cabinet le 13 juillet 1949. La nomination de David Moffat Johnson, 5 titre de haut-commissaire du Canada au Pakistan, rebut l'approbation du Cabinet le 18 novembre 1949. Approved by Cabinet on July 13, 1949. The appointment of David Moffat Johnson as High Convnissioner for Canada in Pakistan was approved by Cabinet on November 18, 1949.