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Another round of temporary opening started from Jan.30, More than 200 containers of goods needed for Pakistan are on their way.

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Thousands of trucks stuck at Torkham border crossing​

Up to 6,000 trucks loaded with goods had been stuck on both sides since Sunday, says Sarhadi

February 21, 2023

A key border crossing between Pakistan and Afghanistan remained closed for a third day, with thousands of goods vehicles stuck and businesses facing losses as officials from both sides try to broker a solution.

Taliban authorities on Sunday closed Torkham, the main point of transit for travellers and goods between Pakistan and landlocked Afghanistan.

"The closure of the border crossing between Pakistan and Afghanistan has been causing losses to traders of the two countries. There are long queues of heavy trucks stranded on both sides of the border," said Zia-ul-Haq Sarhadi, director of the Pakistan-Afghanistan Joint Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

He said up to 6,000 trucks loaded with goods had been stuck on both sides since Sunday.

The reason for the closure was not entirely clear, though officials on both sides have said they were in discussions to resolve the issue. A provincial Taliban official told Reuters on Monday Pakistan had not lived up to its commitments to allow transit, travellers and sick people seeking treatment to cross.


Trucks loaded with supplies to leave for Afghanistan, are seen stranded after Taliban authorities have closed the main border crossing in Torkham, Pakistan February 21, 2023. PHOTO: REUTERS

However, the incumbent government has not commented publicly on the matter. According to sources, the government had not been told the reason ahead of the closure.

Sarhadi said Afghanistan relied on goods from Pakistan for much of its needs and many trucks were also destined for Central Asia using Afghanistan as a transit point.

"The traders and particularly those supplying fresh food items such as fruits, vegetables, are facing losses as trucks are stranded on the way for the past three days," he said.


A man walks past trucks, loaded with supplies to leave for Afghanistan, aer seen stranded after Taliban authorities have closed the main border crossing in Torkham, Pakistan February 21, 2023. PHOTO: REUTERS

He added some trucks had been diverted to another, smaller border crossing, but traders were worried about the security of truck drivers travelling to that region.

Residents had reported heavy gunfire on Monday morning near the Torkham border crossing, but the Taliban official had denied any clashes and said the situation was under control.

Disputes linked to the 2,600 km (1,615 mile) border have been a bone of contention between the neighbours for decades.
Pakistan Afghanistan border crossing


Barter Trade: Benefits For Pakistan & Afghanistan​

Admin PSF


Large scale Barter trade is an centuries old concept of commence that has traditionally thrived within the South Asian region since the very start of recorded civilizations. It comes with various advantages that many people across the border (Both Pakistan/Afghanistan) continue to rely upon well within the 21st century.

It is exactly due to these advantages and circumstances linked with barter trading that the Government of Pakistan has been making various efforts to formalize the concept and implement trade barter mechanisms. This article will dive briefly into the need for and importance of barter trading between Pakistan and Afghanistan.

First of let’s start with small introductions, barter is an act of trading goods or services between two or more involved traders without the use of money or any financial currency (Goods are exchanged for different Goods). Hence international barter trade between Pakistan and Afghanistan is an occurrence of exchange in which people from both countries directly exchange goods or services for other goods or services without using currency such as intentionally standard US dollar as a medium.

For example, due to current ongoing war in Ukraine fuel prices have soured internationally, as a result Pakistan has started to source coal from Afghanistan instead of previous South African suppliers, in exchange for exporting coal Afghan traders import meat and wheat from Pakistan due to food shortage and ongoing humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan (Exchange of goods).

This system is particularly important due to the ease of trading it provides for locals, promotion of commercial activities across borders and most importantly absence of using US Dollars to trade of which both Pakistan and Afghanistan currently are in shortage (Pakistan facing economic crisis and Afghanistan facing western sanctions). These advantages are listed in more detail below:

Circumnavigating International banking and Dollars

Typically, international trade involves usage of international banking processes and exchange of currency (US dollars) for goods or services, however this is not a good option in the situation that US dollars are in short supply, international sanctions limit the use of banking resources or banking infrastructure being inadequate.

For trade between Pakistan and Afghanistan, the situation is bad on multiple spectrums as western sanctions on IEA / lack of adequate banking infrastructure within Afghanistan limits its access to international banking and resulting economic restrictions reduced dollar supply,

Pakistan is also facing its own dollar shortage due to economic shortcomings. This means Barter trade between Pakistan and Afghanistan where goods are exchanged for other goods has become a good method of circumnavigating international banking restrictions and reducing dependency upon US dollars.

Using Barter trade, people on both sides of the border can easily access various products and services which are in short supply locally but available in abundance across the border without the need for relying upon complex international banking. Western banking restrictions upon trading with IEA government and inability of Afghans to pay in dollars can be countered by simple barter trade. Here the threat of money going to “Regimes” as west terms it is also reduces as in barter the main beneficiaries are local people trading need-based goods rather than weapons.

Resolving the humanitarian crisis and securing Peace

Currently Afghanistan is still in facing a humanitarian crisis partially caused by sanctions placed on the country which limit its options in importing necessary food, medicine, and other essentials. By making use of Barter trade with Pakistan has the pressure been reduced upon Afghans as they were able to trade various local products sitting in surplus such as coal in exchange for various necessary items such as wheat.

Furthermore, as Afghans continue to reopen various lost local industries its options for barter exports to Pakistan increase in exchange for which Afghanistan can continue to import essentials until the crisis gets resolved.

The government of Pakistan has listed assisting Afghanistan within the crisis as one of main motivating factors behind formalization of barter trade. This is because Pakistan understands that peace within Afghanistan is long overdue and a necessary step towards establishing economic development framework in Pakistan’s western frontier.

Increasing economic cooperation and development

As things stand, both Pakistan and Afghanistan have economic issues now. Both issues differ from one another in circumstance and intensity, regardless it is the long-term goals of both to countries to establish an environment where economic cooperation and development can be achieved. Barter trading in this context is a great start as in its nature it requires both parties to cooperate, whereas development is a natural byproduct of increased local commercial activities.

As Barter trading is relatively simpler than international banking, more and more local traders within Afghanistan and Pakistan have access to this trade network and can benefit directly. As the government fully implements a fully comprehensive barter trading system, the cooperation level of both countries will increase dramatically where long term economic planning will become possible.

Furthermore, as traders start taking advantage of surplus products from each side while making up for shortages at home, economic development rate is expected to rise. Such is the power of barter trading between two culturally close nations.
The process of bringing Chinese electric vehicles to Pakistan via Khunjrab border has started.
Now vehicles running without petrol will be seen in different cities of Pakistan.


Trade resumes after key Afghan border crossing with Pakistan reopens

February 25, 2023



JALALABAD: Trucks carrying food and pharmaceuticals crossed through a key border crossing between Pakistan and Afghanistan after it reopened on Saturday, almost a week after Taliban authorities shut the busiest trading waypoint.

Relations between the two nations have soured since the Taliban took power in August 2021, with Islamabad accusing its neighbour of harbouring militant groups that have carried out strikes on its soil -- a charge Kabul denies.

There have been frequent flare-ups along the mostly mountainous dividing line splitting the countries -- which no Afghan government has ever recognised -- including sporadic gunfights and closures.

The Torkham border crossing was reopened as of 6:00 am (0130 GMT) Saturday, Afghan customs official Muslim Khaksar said at the waypoint in Afghanistan's eastern Nangarhar province.

"The border is now open from both sides for civilians as well as for traders," he said

"Trucks carrying rice, cement, construction material, medicines, and other edibles were sent to Afghanistan," a Pakistani customs official said, adding that lorries loaded with coal, vegetables and fruits had entered Pakistan.

Around 1,400 trucks on the Pakistan side were still waiting to cross into Afghanistan, he added.

The crossing was closed by Afghan authorities late Sunday, who objected to what they said were new documentation rules restricting attendants of medical patients from entering Pakistan.

Pakistani officials never confirmed or denied a rule change.

A gunfight erupted at the crossing between border guards from the two countries on Monday morning, with both sides blaming each other for initiating the violence.

On Saturday, attendants were allowed to enter Pakistan after showing their Afghan identity cards, the Pakistani customs official said.

Both nations are in economic turmoil, with Afghanistan reeling from a drop-off in aid after the fall of the US-backed government, and Pakistan hammered by ballooning energy prices and a foreign exchange crisis.

Since the Taliban's return, Pakistan has witnessed a rise in attacks on its soil, especially in the regions bordering Afghanistan.

But two separate attacks in January and February in the major cities of Peshawar and Karachi killed dozens of people -- mostly police -- and were linked to the Pakistani Taliban, which has deep ties with its Afghan namesake.

On Wednesday, a high-level delegation from Pakistan visited Kabul to discuss ways to counter the threat of militant attacks.

Khunjerab Pass opened for Pakistan-China trade after three years​

PM Shehbaz hails the development, hopes it will boost trade between two countries

April 02, 2023

pakistan china border khunjerab pass

Pakistan-China border, Khunjerab pass
The Khunjerab Pass, a major trade route between Pakistan and China, has been reopened after a closure of almost three years due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The pass connects Gilgit-Baltistan with China’s Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous region and was closed in 2020 following the outbreak of Covid-19.

According to official sources, Chinese authorities have shared a letter with Pakistani officials regarding the reopening of the pass for trade, and port authorities on the Chinese side have been instructed to take all necessary measures to contain Covid-19 before the arrival of goods from Pakistan.

Similarly, Pakistani border authorities have also been instructed to take all measures regarding Covid-19, ensuring the containment of the disease.

Khunjerab Pass generally opens from April 1 to November 30 every year, and remains closed from December 1 to March 31 due to cold weather and lack of oxygen in the high altitude.

But to ensure the smooth customs clearance of Pakistan’s urgently-needed and other supplies, the port was temporarily opened twice early this year.

Despite difficulties including extremely cold weather, heavy snow and lack of oxygen, the local customs have worked round the clock to ensure the transportation of cargo.

This year, the last temporary opening lasted for 12 days between January 30 and February 10 while the first port opening was between January 19 and 20.

The two temporary openings facilitated 128 cross-border personnel visits, 328 transportation vehicles’ passes, and more than 6,000 tonnes of goods exported.

The reopening of the border crossing is expected to boost economic activities between the two countries.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has expressed his pleasure over the reopening of the Khunjerab Pass, saying it would help increase bilateral trade between Pakistan and China.

The reopening of the pass removes a hurdle that would further expedite the pace of work on the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), he said.

The prime minister termed the occasion a welcome one for boosting trade with 'Iron brother China' and expressed his resolve to move ahead on CPEC with dual speed.

He added that CPEC was a gift of progress and prosperity given by former prime minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif and the Chinese leadership for the region and the people.

The premier also appreciated the relevant authorities of the two countries and team members over the restoration of trade and travel facility.
CARGO trucks pass through the Torkham area where a customs terminal is under construction.


The salient features of the terminal, under the procedure, customs clearance of loaded vehicles would be done under a one-window system while goods declaration procedure could be performed through internet under the WebBasedOne Custom system by the importers and exporters from any part of the country or abroad.

The terminal, which will be of an international standard and will provide all the basic facilities to traders, transporters and customs officials, would be completed and fully operational by the end of 2023.

The new terminal will have a cumulative parking facility for at least 500 vehicles which will hugely minimise traffic mess on the main Peshawar-Torkham highway.

The terminal is also designed to offer rapid passenger immigration process, efficient cargo checking and handling alongside e-lanes for even faster clearance and a sufficiently large parking space for at least 500 trucks awaiting clearance.
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Officials promise removal of hurdles to Pak-Afghan trade

Bureau Report
April 9, 2023

PESHAWAR: Authorities have assured Pakistani and Afghan traders of measures to remove hurdles to trade between the two countries.

Newly-appointed chief collector (customs) in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Fayyaz Anwar chaired a meeting at the Torkham border on Saturday to discuss issues related to Pak-Afghan trade.

The participants, including Pakistani and Afghan traders and relevant officials, held a “thorough discussion on the performance of relevant public sector institutions along with the problems of Pak-Afghan businessmen,” according to a news release.

The traders highlighted their issues and proposed ways to resolve them.

Traders complain of slow goods clearance at border points

The participants included collector customs (operations) in Peshawar Mohammad Ashfaq, additional collector customs at Torkham Mohammad Rizwan, additional collector customs in Peshawar Rizwan Mehmood, deputy collector (operations) at Torkham Asma Javed, assistant collectors at Torkham Imad Mohib, superintendent Siddique Akbar, PAJCCI coordinator and director Ziaul Haq Sarhadi, KCCI president Syed Jawad Hussain Kazmi, and members of the Torkham Customs Agents Association.

The representatives of NLC, FC, police and other security departments, who were also in attendance, made several suggestions to remove obstacles to Pak-Afghan trade.

Customs officials from Torkham briefed Mr Anwar about their visit to the newly-constructed NLC terminal.

Ziaul Haq Sarhadi, who is also the president of Frontier Customs Agents Association (FCAA) and former senior vice-president of the Sarhad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI), called for steps to ensure smooth Pak-Afghan trade as well as transit trade.

He said traders had no issues with the customs department at Torkham, Ghulam Khan and Kharlachi border points.

Mr Sarhadi, however, said officials of border management and other institutions took a lot of time for goods checking causing difficulties for traders.

He said while containers of Afghan transit trade were cleared in 10-12 days at Karachi Port, the demurrage charges were imposed on them due to the slow process of their clearance.

The FCCA president also complained that official orders for cross-stuffing hadn’t been implemented causing the levying of heavy charges on containers.

He suggested that goods of Afghan transit trade should be moved from Karachi to Torkham by the Pakistan Railways along with a bonded carrier service.

Mr Sarhadi urged authorities to allow the filing of goods documents at Azakhel dry port for trouble-free functioning of the customs clearing agents in the province.

Chief Collector (customs) Fayaz Anwar told traders that all possible measures would be taken to facilitate cross-border trade.

He said the customs department knew the problems facing the business community and would strive to resolve them on a priority basis.
ECC meeting gave the approval of the proposal for declaring Angoor Ada as an authorised land route station for the overland trade through Afghanistan and Central Asian countries.
Afghan land, a historic trade corridor.
Turkmen gas has been exported to Pakistan via Kandahar.

Chairman of the Chamber of Commerce and Investment Muhammad said that this is the first time Turkmanistan gas is being exported to Pakistan through this route.

50 tanker gas is being supplied in the first phase.....

Pakistan - Iran Border ..

Prime Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif and President of Iran, Seyed Ebrahim Raisi will jointly inaugurate Mand-Pishin Border Sustenance Marketplace and Polan-Gabd Electricity Transmission Line at Mand-Pishin border crossing point on Thursday 18 May 2023...
Pakistan - Iran Border Market Inaugurated ..

APP | Radio Pakistan
May 18, 2023


Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Thursday announced that Iran will supply 100 megawatts of electricity daily to Balochistan’s Gwadar once the Polan-Gabd electricity transmission line project becomes functional.

The prime minister made the announcement at a media briefing after he and Iranian President Seyed Ebrahim Raisi inaugurated the transmission line project and a marketplace at the Mand-Pishin border crossing point.

State-run APP reported that the line will play a pivotal role in meeting the energy needs of the region — including households and businesses — by bringing in an additional 100MW of electricity from Iran.

Separately, in an interview with Iran’s official news agency IRNA, the premier stressed the importance of enhanced cooperation with Iran, saying the energy projects and border markets were emblematic of the vitality of Pakistan-Iran friendship.

The prime minister said Pakistan and Iran were brotherly countries bound by deep-rooted religious, cultural, and linguistic ties. “Both our governments are collaborating closely for the betterment and socio-economic uplift of our peoples.”

PM Shehbaz said the Mand-Pishin border marketplace and the Polan-Gabd electricity project were tangible manifestations of this resolve. They would also serve as a stepping stone for greater cooperation between our two countries, especially in the economic domain, he added.

Border marketplace​

The Mand-Pishin border sustenance market will provide a thriving platform for increasing cross-border trade, fostering economic growth, and opening up new avenues of opportunity for local businesses.

The premier was of the view that border markets would enhance trade and contribute to the development of the two nations.

This is one of the six border markets which will be constructed along the Pak-Iran common border.

PM Shehbaz and President Raisi also planted a sapling on the premises of the border market as a gesture to stride forward in the bilateral relationship between the two countries.
The first ever seafood cargo container from Pakistan has successfully arrived in Xinjiang, China via Karakorum highway...


Gwadar Port sends 20,000 tons of DAP fertilizer to Afghanistan​

By Yasir Habib Khan

GWADAR, June 3 (Gwadar Pro) - A private sector consignment of 20,000 tons of DAP fertilizer has been sent from Gwadar port to Afghanistan on May 31.

This batch of DAP fertilizer was imported from Australia under the Afghan Transit Trade Agreement by KB Fertilizer and Agven Pvt Ltd, enterprises operating in Gwadar Free Zone (South).

An official from COPHC told Gwadar Pro that the DAP fertilizer has been executed by Shipping service provider (Makran Trader) and Ship clearing agent. “Both of them are local companies. This means Gwadar port is providing business opportunities to the locals on a large scale,” he added.

DAP is used in various industrial processes, such as metal finishing. It also improves crop yield besides the development and growth of flowering plants or leafy plants. In 2022, Gwadar port processed a private sector consignment of 8,000 tons of DAP fertilizers and transported it via road to Afghanistan, marking the first Afghanistan-bound fertilizer shipment.

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