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January 10, 2020

Pak, Afghan businessmen agree on promotion of bilateral trade

Peshawar

January 10, 2020

PESHAWAR: The Pak-Afghan Joint Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PAJCCI) has agreed on the provision of the same facilities under Afghanistan Pakistan Transit Trade Agreement (APTTA) that were available to the trade community under Afghan Transit Trade Agreement (ATTA) of 1965.

The consensus in this regard was reached during a meeting held in Kabul recently, said a press release. The participants agreed on the promotion of bilateral trade, addressing the reservations of the business community on the new transit trade agreement, the establishment of a liaison committee for the removal of hurdles to bilateral trade, exchange of trade delegations and promotion of investment.

Both sides also agreed on revival of the transportation of transit trade from Karachi to Peshawar/Chaman through Railways, amendment to the SRO 121 to allow loose cargo, abolition of the monopoly of bonded carriers, review over increase in valuation of fresh fruits, dry fruits and perishable items and issuance of multiple visas for the business community by both countries.

The Pakistan side was represented by a 12-member delegation headed by the president of PAJCCI, Zubair Motiwala and comprising Ziaul Haq Sarhadi, Naumanul Haq, Said Mahmood, Qazi Zahid Hussain, Khalid Abdullah Khan, Mohammad Aqeel Muniyar, Izzat Ali, Raja Junaid, M. Shoaib, Zubair Ahmad and Joint Secretary of the chamber Faiza Zubair which visited Afghanistan and attended the meeting held in Kabul. The ambassador of Pakistan in Kabul, Zahid Nasrullah, and Trade Commercial Consular Dr Mohammad Yousaf also participated in the meeting as special guests.

The participants of the meeting presented proposals to the governments of their respective countries for the resolution of the identified problems on priority bases. Ambassador Zahid Nasrullah told the meeting that the Embassy of Pakistan had already announced the issuance of visas and assured that Afghan traders would be issued one-year business visas. The Pakistani delegation also held separate meetings, various Afghan officials.

During meetings with Afghan officials, the members of Pakistani delegation exchanged views on hardships in bilateral trade between both countries, so the problems faced by the trading community may be resolved under a proper mechanism.

Ziaul Haq Sarhadi termed the visit a milestone in the promotion of bilateral trade between both countries, saying that progress had been made regarding provision of facilities to the business community of both countries. He hoped the business community of both countries would benefit from the consensus reached during the visit and that will lead to the promotion of investment in both neighbouring countries.