PESHAWAR - Sarhad Chamber of Commerce and Industry has rejected the government decision to open the Pak-Afghan Torkham and Chaman borders for five days a week, and demanded to keep open the border points round the clock in order to protect the Pak-Afghan transit and bilateral trade, and avoid further financial losses to traders.
The concern was raised in a meeting of traders, exporters and importers, held here at the chamber on Tuesday with SCCI President Maqsood Anwar in the chair.
Besides the chamber’s Vice Presidents, Shahid Hussain and Jalil Jan, a large number of traders and exporters associated with Afghan transit trade were present on the occasion.
The participants demanded a opening of the Pak-Afghan border on regular mode as it would boost the economic activities.
The SCCI chief informed the meeting that the federal interior ministry had issued a notification to keep open Torkham and Chaman borders for 5 days a week for export only (both for Afghan transit trade and bilateral trade), according to which minimum 100 trucks from each side were allowed from Torkham and Chaman crossing points per day, which is insufficient.
He said that Pakistan’s trade with Afghanistan was on a constant decline, with most of the volume being shifted to Iran and India.
He stressed the need to keep open both Torkham and Chaman borders 24/7 to give a boost to the Afghan transit trade and bilateral trade, besides to ease difficulties of the business community.
He informed that containers loaded with perishable items were parked at Landi Kotal and Takhta Baig areas due to which the food items worth millions of rupees might rotten.