Islamabad, March 01, 2018 (PPI-OT): Minister of State for Finance Rana Mohammad Afzal had a meeting with Afghan delegation attending the Pak-Afghan Joint Committee (PAJC) meeting in Islamabad organized by the Centre for Research and Security Studies (CRSS), Pakistan as part of its Track II initiative ‘Beyond Boundaries’. The delegation led by Mozammal Shinwari, Advisor to CEO on Trade and Regional Cooperation, also included Abdul Hakim Mujahid, Executive Director and Head of Afghanistan High Peace Council, Ms Elay Ershad, Member of Parliament, Ms Rangina Kargar, Member of Parliament, Lal Mohammad Durrani, Dy. Speaker Nangarhar Provincial Council, Salim Khan Kanduzi, Former Governor Nangarhar Province, Qutubuddin Royeedar, Former Dy. Minister for Parliamentary Affairs and Mr. Feridoon Sikandar, Advisor to CEO on Refugees.
Mr. Aizad Ali Project Director, CRSS Pakistan and Imtiaz Gul, Executive Director, CRSS Pakistan were also present on the occasion. During the meeting discussion specially focused on problems being faced in the realm of transit trade and measures for trade facilitation. Both sides agreed that new customs clearance facility at Torkham needs to be completed in the shortest possible time so that excessive delays could be avoided. The Minister also assured the delegation of his support for speedy customs clearance at the ports to facilitate early movement of goods containers. It was also discussed that the scholarships being offered to Afghan students could also be made available to Afghan refugee families in Pakistan.
The delegation apprised the Minister that the Afghan Government is making concerted efforts for resettlement of Afghan refugees back home and that it plans to facilitate two million refugees in two years. The Minister on the occasion appreciated the statement of the Afghan President Ashraf Ghani wherein he mentioned about unconditional dialogue with Afghan Taliban and also having talks with Government of Pakistan to resolve Afghan crisis. The delegation thanked Minster Rana Afzal for sparing time for the meeting and a frank discussion with members of the delegation on different matters. The Minister, it may be mentioned specially flew in from Karachi Thursday morning to meet the delegation at the Rawal Lounge before the latter’s departure for Afghanistan.
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