ICCI & Chaman CCI urge Gov’t to allow trade with Afghanistan in Pak Rupees

Government should address payment issues for doing trade with Afghanistan

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Islamabad (VOM) : Haji Muhammad Hashim Khan Achakzai, President, Chaman Chamber of Commerce & Industry (CCCI) visited Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry and shared the issues with Muhammad Shakeel Munir, President ICCI being faced by the business community in doing trade with Afghanistan. Jamshaid Akhtar Sheikh Senior Vice President and Muhammad Faheem Khan, Vice President ICCI were also present at the occasion.

Haji Muhammad Hashim Khan Achakzai said that the local banks have suddenly stopped receiving payments in foreign currency and refused issuing E-Form for export and import with Afghanistan due to which the business community was facing great problems. He said that this situation has resulted in a massive halt of vehicles at the Pak-Afghan border loaded with various products and called upon the government to take urgent notice of this problem to resolve this critical issue. He said that trade of millions of dollars per day was taking place between Pakistan and Afghanistan through the Chaman border and emphasized that the government should keep the Chaman border crossing point open for 24 hours in order to further facilitate trade promotion between the two countries. He further stressed that the government should address payment issues for doing trade with Afghanistan on a priority basis so that Pakistan may not lose its market in Afghanistan.

Speaking at the occasion, Muhammad Shakeel Munir, President, and Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry (ICCI) said that Afghanistan was already facing problems of food items and the latest move by the commercial banks to stop receipt of payments in foreign currency would adversely affect the export of food items to Afghanistan creating more problems for Afghan people. He urged that the government should allow trade with Afghanistan in Pak Rupees that would greatly facilitate in promoting bilateral trade between the two countries. He said that if this issue was not resolved urgently, other regional and international countries would capture the market in Afghanistan that would be a big blow for Pakistan.

Jamshaid Akhtar Sheikh Senior Vice President and Muhammad Faheem Khan Vice President ICCI said that Afghanistan was a gateway for Pakistan to Central Asian countries and emphasized that the government should take all possible measures to provide maximum facilitation to the Pakistani business community in promoting trade with Afghanistan. He stressed that a joint bilateral mechanism should be worked out with Afghanistan for a win-win situation. It would keep the employment and production activities of our export-oriented industries steady and help them further enhance exports with Afghanistan.

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