July 11, 2024

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The closure of the Afghanistan border crossing caused severe losses for the Pakistani exporters

Over 7,000 trucks are stuck at the Pakistan-Afghanistan Torkham border due to the closure of the crossing points by the Pakistani government for the past five days, according to a trade group. The trucks were carrying goods, which include perishable products like vegetables, fruits, juices, eggs, and poultry.

According to the director of the Pak-Afghan Joint Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PAJCCI), Mr. Zia-ul-Haq Sarhadi, if the Pakistani government does not open the gate, exporters and businesspeople will suffer significant losses as a result of the border blockade.

Torkham is a crucial commercial corridor and a trade network for Pakistan to connect with the countries in Central Asia. The Afghan Taliban closed the border after Islamabad accused Kabul of offering safe zones to Pakistan Taliban militants whose cross-border attacks have sparked an increase in violence in the nation.

On Thursday, the border crossing point’s gate was opened by the Afghan authorities. Along with the worry over perishable goods spoiling, the delay of containers on their way to Afghanistan is costing exporters thousands of rupees in demurrage fees every day.

Every sugar box is subject to a daily demurrage charge of Rs. 45,000, while a container containing transit goods is subject to a daily detention charge of $160.

Moreover, Zia stated that if immediate action was not taken, the business sector would suffer major losses as the sugar export quota to Afghanistan would expire in 45 days, with only 20 days remaining.

Businesspeople and other parties involved in Pak-Afghan commerce were concerned when the Afghan side of the gate was already opened but it remained locked from the Pakistani side.

The border closure is not only costing the nation millions of rupees, but it is also making it difficult for sick Afghan people who need to travel for medical treatment.

In addition to allowing hundreds of individuals to cross the border on both sides, Zia asked that Pakistani authorities immediately open the border so that stuck-up, loaded trucks could reach their destination.