What it does: A non-governmental advocate for the bilateral relations between Pakistan and China.
Best known for: Helping launch the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, a series of infrastructure improvement programs that seek to improve trade routes from Pakistan to China and vice versa.
Staff stats: Up to 50 employees in its headquarters in Islamabad.
The good bits: Employees get an opportunity to work with various international organisations and attend international conferences.
The not so good bits: The management of the organisation is criticised for having favouritism inside its offices.
The Pakistan-China Institute (PCI) was launched in October 2009 under its first chairman, Senator Mushahid Hussain. As a non-government, non-partisan, and non-political organisation, the efforts of the PCI is to promote the people-to-people relations of both countries. The PCI seeks to enrich the youth and women of both countries as they advocate for the advancement of defence, diplomacy, energy, education, economy, and the environment.
Part of its efforts to bring the Pakistani and Chinese people together in rigorous discussions, the PCI organises conferences, lectures, and exchange visits. Its role in the realisation of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor established the PCI as a credible institution and the go-to entity of different sectors for advice regarding bilateral matters between Pakistan and China.
The PCI considers itself as a think-tank; an information hub for geostrategies, bilateral relations, and policy recommendations between China and Pakistan. Today, the PCI commits most of its efforts in creating a platform for economic connectivity between the two countries in taking on the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and the aforementioned China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.
Most employees in the PCI start-off as interns. Every intern is allowed to work on various research on a wide array of topics. The PCI only selects individuals that possess notable leadership qualities, the ability to adapt in different situations, and those who are willing to take on diverse challenges. Applicants who want to serve as an intern at the PCI can apply online. Soon after submission, applicants will be called by the PCI for an over-the-phone interview.
A career in the PCI can present various options for every employee. Some of the PCI's former employees either end up as managers in multinational corporate firms, professors in universities, or political commentators, just to name a few. A career in the PCI is an opportunity to establish connections with key persons and organisations in Pakistan, China, and beyond.
Entry-level employees in the PCI can enjoy a monthly payment of at least PKR 25,000 per month, a rate that is higher than the average salary for entry-level researchers in Pakistan. When promoted to Research Associate, the average salary can go as high as PKR 42,000 per month.
A culture of professionalism and friendship must be maintained inside the PCI. Most of the professionals working in the PCI come from academe, and every employee knows how important it is to foster a friendly environment as it can reflect on the relations of both countries.
In times of calamity like the 2014 flood in Pakistan, the PCI offered its relief donations to the victims. The PCI is also working closely with the China World Peace Foundation, a non-government organisation that mobilises politicians, entrepreneurs, and other professionals to launch charity projects.
Inside the PCI office is a casual vibe where both young and experienced professionals are working together on projects. With various lectures, conferences, and Chinese language classes organised throughout the year, a friendly yet casual vibe is always expected.