PESHAWAR, Feb 7: The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KPCCI) has expressed concern over restrictions imposed by the Afghan government on supply of goods from Pakistan to central Asian states and described the action as violation of trade agreements between the two countries.
Dr Mohammad Yousuf Sarwar, the chamber’s president, said in a statement here on Thursday that Pakistani products had been supplied to Afghanistan for the past 48 years under Geneva Agreement and the recent action had disappointed the business community in Pakistan.
He said that the Federal Board of Revenue had stopped the Afghan Transit Trade containers of Afghanistan due to some technical reasons, including lack of transportation documents and strike of bonded carriers, but the supply had been restored now.
Mr Sarwar said that in retaliation the Afghan government all of a sudden stopped the containers of fresh fruits, vegetables, sugar and cement from Pakistan to central Asian states and Russia. He said that the sacrifices offered by the people of Pakistan for their Afghan brethren could not be ignored.
The statement said that the deputy chief executive of Afghan chamber, Khan Jan Olakzai, had also demanded suspension of the Afghan Transit Trade Agreement and export and import business at Karachi port. “We condemn such demands raised by a responsible person, and through a unanimous resolution call for improvement in Pakistan-Afghanistan trade relations,” said the KPCCI president.
He said that in case the exports from Pakistan to Afghanistan were stopped the Afghan people would face severe shortage of daily-use items and the ultimate sufferers would be them.
The KPCCI president demanded of Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar, Commerce Minister Amin Fahim and FBR Chairman Ali Arshad Hakeem to hold negotiations with their Afghan counterparts and resolve these issues.