Pakistan to export goods to CARs via Afghanistan

Salt, rice, medicine among commodities to be traded in local currency


Irshad Ansari February 06, 2022
Trucks loaded with supplies wait to cross into Afghanistan at the Friendship Gate crossing point, in the Pakistan-Afghanistan border town of Chaman. PHOTO: REUTERS

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ISLAMABAD:

The federal government has allowed the export of selected commodities to Central Asian Republics (CARs) via Afghanistan against the Pakistani currency.

The government allowed the export of goods in rupees via the land routes by making amendments to the Export Policy Order, 2020, according to a document available with The Express Tribune. The amendment allows the export of salt, rice, cement, medicine, poultry, meat, fruits and dried fruits, fish and other fish products, pills, candies, sweets and sugar products.

The items also include bakery products, plant foods parts, oil cakes, vegetables and related material, vegetable waste, matches, textiles and textile products, building stones and surgical instruments.
Last month, the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the cabinet had allowed the export of another 14 items to Afghanistan in rupees via land routes owing to the non-availability of tradable currency through banking channels.

The decision will also help the Taliban-led regime continue the import of essential food items from Pakistan until the West recognised their government. The ECC said the decision was taken in view of the food crisis and prevailing situation in Afghanistan.

Since the Taliban takeover of Kabul, Pakistan has taken several measures, including a drastic reduction in duty on imports of vegetables and fruits from Afghanistan. In this connection, the ECC also exempted 45% duty on import of chilghoza from Afghanistan.

Adviser to the Prime Minister on Commerce and Investment Abdul Razak Dawood had told APP last month that Pakistan’s exports to CARs countries had increased to $145 million in 2020-21 from $104 million in 2019-20.

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