Afghanistan accuses Pakistan of violating bilateral transit trade treaty

Last Updated: Fri, Oct 12, 2012 11:50 hrs

Afghanistan has accused Pakistan of violating the Afghanistan-Pakistan Transit Trade Agreement 2010 (APTTA) as by denying its cargo access to Wagah border and seaports.

According to officials of the Afghanistan embassy, Pakistan was restricting its cargo to Peshawar, which was a violation of the treaty, reports The Express Tribune.

Under the APTTA, Afghanistan's cargo can go up to Wagah border and to Karachi seaports - Karachi Port and Bin Qasim Port.

The officials said that unlike Pakistan the Afghan authorities were allowing the Pakistani cargo to go to any point. The Afghan people were putting pressure on the government to review its decision of giving free access to Pakistan's cargo until Islamabad resolves the issue, said the officials.

Pakistani authorities defended themselves by saying that they are yet to prepare mechanism to regulate the cargo movement.

According to an official, the Deputy Economic Minister of Afghanistan had requested that Afghanistan's vehicles carrying fresh fruits to be allowed to go up to Wagah border to cross into India. Both sides agreed that loose cargo could be carried through road across the border for one year as it was a cheaper mode of transportation. However, the Pakistani authorities turned down Afghanistan's request to extend the facility for unlimited period, the official added.

Haji Fateh Khan, representative of the Federation of International Transport Companies of Pakistan, said that Pakistani transporters were also facing problems in Afghanistan. He said the biggest issue that dented the transport business was the volatile security situation in the neighbouring country. Khan added that Afghanistan was creating hurdles in giving entry permits which was affecting the cross border movement of cargoes. (ANI)

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