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Pak Traders Bank on APTTA to Restrict India Afghan Trade

Published Jan 18, 2020
Updated Mar 02, 2020

Sarhad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI) the commerce and business organization based in Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtoonwa province that is on the borders with Afghanistan has strongly opposed permission to Afghanistan to import goods from India via the Wagah-Attari border. There are concerns that if Afghanistan was allowed to import goods from India via Wagah, then Pakistani products will be able to compete in the market and will ultimately damage local industries. 
This will have a major impact on the border trade between the two sides which also includes local and other sourced goods.

As per Pakistan House website, the Pakistan-Afghanistan Transit Trade Agreement does not thus include trilateral trade and only permits bilateral trade between the two countries.

Pakistan conceded transit facility to Afghanistan in accordance with its promise to the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (1958) which makes uncommon arrangements for giving landlocked nations access to oceans.

This new agreement licensed the utilization of more ports including Afghan trucks and expands the quantity of border crossing focuses. The agreement additionally envisioned the utilization of Afghan region for transit among Pakistan and Central Asian nations.

APTTA does not permit land access to India for sending out merchandise to Afghanistan. The agreement has a five years term after which settled upon arrangements can be added or erased to it.

APTTA has ejected Afghanistan from the ‘negative list, enables Afghan trucks to convey to Pakistani ports and up to Wagah frontier which were not permitted previously.

Afghanistan’s concerns on the other hand arise mainly due to the denial of the larger Indian market to the country which has led to opening of the much more expensive air corridor with various Indian cities such as New Delhi and Mumbai. At the same time the reduction in dependency on Pakistan has been ignored.

Importantly while Pakistani goods can be traded with Afghanistan as well as transit through the country to Central Asia, Afghan goods are not permitted to be transported to India as per the APPTA.

Thus the APPTA is beneficial to Pakistan but not to Afghanistan.