Pak-Afghan accord inked

Published: October 29, 2010
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 Trucks carrying the Afghan transit trade supply wait for customs clearance in the border town of Chaman. photo: ppi

Trucks carrying the Afghan transit trade supply wait for customs clearance in the border town of Chaman. photo: ppi

In a positive development in relations between Afghanistan and Pakistan, the two countries signed the Afghanistan-Pakistan Transit Trade Agreement (APTTA) on Thursday.

Commerce Minister Makhdoom Amin Fahim and his Afghan counterpart Anwarul Haq Ahadi inked the deal.

Under the agreement, Afghanistan will be able to send export consignments to India via the Wagah border. The deal, however, does not allow Delhi a trade corridor through Pakistan to Afghanistan.

Trade between India and Afghanistan through sea routes will, however, continue under the previous arrangement.

In return, Pakistan will have access to Central Asian Republics (CAR) through Afghanistan.

Earlier this month, Pakistan’s federal cabinet gave the go-ahead to the trade agreement, but kept its scope restricted by disallowing the transport of Indian export goods to the war-torn country through its land.

The deal is expected to bolster Pakistan’s exports to  Afghanistan and Central Asia. Information Minister Qamar Zaman Kaira told the media after the cabinet meeting that Pakistan would be the ultimate winner of the agreement.

Kaira said it would largely help manufacturers and exporters and the country was expected to earn up to $2 billion through this arrangement. “It is going to be a very significant facility for our manufacturers and exporters.”

After signing the accord on Thursday, Fahim called on Afghan President Hamid Karzai and discussed matters of mutual interest with special reference to strengthening of trade relations between the two countries.

Published in The Express Tribune, October 29th, 2010.

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Reader Comments (3)

  • A Suhail
    Oct 29, 2010 - 1:03PM

    Right move by the government to provide access to Afghan goods to Wagah. While Afghanistan has provided us access to CAR, I do not see that land route working for us. First the road infrastructure is in shambles in Afghanistan and secondly the threat of bandits will loam large. It takes less than 8 hours to drive from Afghan border to Wagah owing to our investment in motorway same can not be said about Afghanistan road infrastructure. Anyways, I support commerce between regional states as thats the only way out of crushing poverty we have in this regions.Recommend

  • Mian Mazhar yasin
    Oct 29, 2010 - 3:28PM

    This is a good agreement. If the governments should also arrange for insurance of the goods that will go through Afghanistan to CAR . Without insurance it is not good for Pakistani businesses to use Afghan land route.Recommend

  • Oct 29, 2010 - 3:43PM

    No right move,
    a successful efforts are being made to find a safe way for providing ration
    to the American and Nato forces stationed in Afghanistan,
    transit trade mean not bilateral trade,

    Transit mean, passing(across,over through or one place to another)

    crossing (of a heavenly body)
    over the observatory being conveyed in transit.

    All is being for significant purposes.Recommend

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