Germany–Pakistan relations

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Pakistani-German relations
Map indicating locations of Pakistan and Germany


State secretaries of the two countries during a reception in Bonn, 1964
Ayub Khan in Germany on January 22, 1961.

The Germany–Pakistani relations (German: Deutschland–Pakistan-Beziehung Urdu: پاکستان جرمنی تعلقات‎) are the diplomatic and bilateral relations between Germany and Pakistan.[1][2] Succeeded by the historical British Raj strong ties in the 1910s–40s, the relations were fully established in the 1950s, which were primarily based on mutual friendship, cultural, and mutual cooperation in social, education, and economic developments.[2] Relations with Pakistan were first established by West-Germany and later on by East Germany with East-Pakistan, also in the 1950s.[2]

As of current, Germany maintains an embassy in Islamabad and consulate-generals in Karachi, Lahore, Peshawar and Quetta.[2] Pakistan has as embassy in Berlin and consulate-generals in Hamburg, Brandenburg, and other cities of Germany.[1] Despite strong cooperation and historical ties, the recent difficulties grew in bilateral relations of both countries as the political issues of Afghan war becoming the prime factor in both countries' strategic policies on settlement in 2014.[3]


Relations during cold war:1950s–1990s[edit]

The bilateral relationships were succeeded by historical British India relations in the 1940s, and finally restored in the 1950s after the establishment of both the countries in the late 1940s.[4] Both, West and East Germany had tilted toward forming alliance with India in 1950s and maybe also because of the mentioned historical romantic traditions idealizing India.[5]

Although Pakistan's relations with West-Germany was relatively healthy and based on mutual cooperation; the relations with East-Germany was deteriorated. In contrast, East-Germany maintained strong relations with East-Pakistan in the 1950s.

In 1961, President Ayub Khan paid a first state visit to West Germany, meeting with German president Heinrich Lübke and Chancellor Konrad Adenauer.[6] During this time, Germany partnered with Pakistan to launched industrial development program; hence becoming one of the first economic partner of Germany.[6]

In the 1960s, West Germany started a prolonged and heavy industrial programmes to aid Pakistan in its industrialization growth. West Germany idealized Pakistan as "an example of successful development policy in the developing country.". Although, Germany retained neutrality policy during the 1971 war of India and Pakistan; East Germany became the third country in the world, and the first country in Europe, to officially recognized Bangladesh in 1972 after its succeeded independence in 1971.[7] In the 1970s, Pakistan normalize its relations with East-Germany and Soviet bloc.[7]

Cultural history[edit]

Street named in Allama Iqbal' s honour in Heidelberg, Germany.

Since they established diplomatic relations, Germany and Pakistan have both enjoyed extremely closed and cordial relationships. Before the re-unification of Germany, Pakistan maintained warm and cordial relationships with both East-Germany and West-Germany. Germany is home to 35,081 Pakistani immigrants and around more than 1200 Germans currently reside in Pakistan, mostly residing in Karachi, Lahore, and Peshawar. Germany maintains a healthy diplomatic presence in the country, with an embassy in Islamabad, a consulate in Karachi and honorary-consulates in Lahore, Peshawar, and Quetta. Germany also is one of the countries playing a vital and influential role in Pakistan's current political events, others being Saudi Arabia, China, the United States, and the United Kingdom

Economic relations[edit]

The economical and financial development cooperation between Pakistan and Germany goes back to 1961, with trade investment exceeding 2.3 billion. Germany is now Pakistan's fourth largest trade partner.

During the 1970s, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto took extensive initiatives to strengthen Pakistan's ties with Germany. Under Bhutto, the military academies of each country signed a strategic and military training pact. German military officials and cadets frequently visit the Pakistan military academy and Pakistanis visit Germany in return. In the 1980s, the Germany—Pakistan relations saw a military alliance and supported each other while running clandestine operations against the Soviet Union's presence in Afghanistan SSR.

In the 1990s, Germany and Pakistan sought a business alliance, known as the Pakistan German Business Forum. It was formed in 1997 with the humble initiatives of the German ambassador to Pakistan. Commercial trade between Islamabad and Berlin has also been very essential in recent years, as Germany is Pakistan's fourth largest trade partner. [8] In 2000, Germany became one of Pakistan's most important allies surrounding the war in North-West Pakistan between Pakistan and the Taliban. In recent years, the Germany—Pakistan trade and science relations have developed greatly with Germany investing in and trading with Pakistan. Germany is actively involved in Pakistan's socio-economic development and is an active member of the Friends of Democratic Pakistan Forum.

On August, 2014 German Ambassador in Pakistan Dr Cyrill Nunn informed Finance Minister Senator Ishaq Dar in order to foster economic energies German businessmen were launching ‘Pakistan Gate’ in Berlin on August 24, 2014 which would provide business contacts between the two countries.

Research and academic exchange[edit]

Bhutto meeting with German official.

The academic cooperation and research exchange dates back to the 1930s, when many scientists (who opted to join Pakistan) worked with Germany. In 1960, following the start of the German—Pakistan cooperation, the world acclaimed Institute of Physics (IoP) was built at the University of Islamabad. Germany also sent its scientists to interact with Pakistan's scientists, contributing to the rise of physics in Pakistan. Germany also helped Pakistan to participate in CERN projects and supported Pakistan in numerous occasions for Pakistan's observant status in CERN. Germany also allowed hundreds of Pakistan's physicists and mathematicians to conduct their research in DESY. Ayub Khan, then-Chief Martial Law Administrator, built strategic ties with East and West Germany.

Perception on relations[edit]

In 2012, the relations had been down and cooled when Pakistan's police detained three alleged German intelligence agents near the Afghan border.[9] All three agents were interrogated by the FIA agents before being deported from the country with "Persona non grata" after Germany loaded a protest.[10] In March 2013, German media reported that German intelligence agencies arrested an alleged Pakistani agent working on obtained sensitive data information on drones; no other details were provided.[11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Staffe. "Die Auslandsvertretung auf den mit Pakistan im Berlin, Duetschland". Government auf dem mit Pakistan. Die Missionen Genannt auf den mit Pakistan. Retrieved 25 June 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c d et. al. "Der Pakistan und Duestschland Beziehung". Ministrium die Internationale Beziehungen und missionian Auslandsvertretung. Ministrium die Internationale Beziehungen, Islamabad Auslandsvertretung. Retrieved 25 June 2013. 
  3. ^ et. al (22 June 2007). "Germany warns of terror threat, action being planned in Pakistan". Ajj Television, archives. Retrieved 25 June 2013. 
  4. ^ Staffe (September 15, 2010). "Pak-German bilateral relations need to be strengthened". Daily Times, Pakistan. Retrieved 25 June 2013. 
  5. ^ Robotka, Bettina. "Germany's South Asia Strategy: Implications for Pakistan" (PDF). Centre of Area and Policy Studies of Humboldt University of Berlin. Robotka, Humboldt University of Berlin. Retrieved 24 June 2013. 
  6. ^ a b Ministrium aus dem Ekonomik. "50 years of Pakistan-German Development Cooperation" (PDF). Ministrium aus dem Ekonomik. Retrieved 26 June 2013. 
  7. ^ a b staff reporter (January 11, 1972). "East-Germany recognize Bangladesh". Ocala, Florida, USA: Ocala Star-Banner. Ocala, Florida, USA: Ocala Star-Banner, via Google News. Associated Press. Retrieved 24 June 2013. 
  8. ^
  9. ^ Hasnain Kazim in Islamabad. "German-Pakistani Tensions:". Der Spiegel. Retrieved 24 June 2013. 
  10. ^ Mughal, Ubaid (24 June 2012). "Pakistan releases three German spies". Newstribe. Retrieved 25 June 2013. 
  11. ^ Reuters (March 29, 2013). "German police arrest Pakistani for suspicion in drone spying case". Express Tribune. Retrieved 25 June 2013.