Friday, January 21

Hundreds of loaded Trucks stranded on Pakistan/Afghanistan border

By: Ashrafuddin Pirzada

PAKISTAN: Trucks loaded with different import and export goods remained stranded on both sides of border with Afghanistan on the third consecutive day as the customs clearing agents associations on the call of Khyber Chamber of Commerce observed their strike on Friday.

Khyber chamber of commerce had given a call to all its affiliated custom agents bodies to boycott from clearing of goods transportation from and to Afganistan to record their protest against the Pakistan State Bank policy for Afghan trade. The import and export clearance was remained stopped at Torkham,Ghulam Khan,Kharlachi and Angoor Adda border with Afghanistan for the last three days.

 An official on the condition of anonymity said importers and exporters had lost million of rupees in the past few days as hundreds of  trucks loaded with different kinds of goods remained parked on both sides of the border with Afghanistan. The traders were observing their strike against form-E that had been made mandatory by State Bank of Pakistan for exporters and importers since December last year.  

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Custom officials said the national exchequer also so far received billion of rupees daily loses due to the boycott from clearing the export and export goods at all border points with Afghanistan.

When asked chief collector custom of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Ahmad Raza Khan he said bilateral trade with Afghanistan dropped down after the Taliban government came into power in Afghanistan. He said lack of proper trade policy by the current Afghan government and weak purchasing power of the Afghan nationals were the main problems that dropped the  Pakistani  goods export to Afghanistan.

Chief collector custom said 26 percent trade with Afghanistan dropped down in the past four months. He said they were following the State bank trader policy that had placed some new conditions for trade with Afghanistan. He said traders were bounded to show US dollars to issue them Form-E which would bring foreign currency to the country. He however said they would take up the traders reservations with high ups so that they could find solution of their demands.

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