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Resolving economic challenges requires proactive and pragmatic approach: Zubair Motiwala

Karachi, August 03, 2022 (PPI-OT):Zubair Motiwala; Chairman PAJCCI speaking at Focus Group Discussion arranged by Center for Research and Security Studies in collaboration with PAJCCI said “to achieve the trade potential and produce tangible results we need to use proactive and pragmatic approach towards ongoing economic challenges especially in the context of PAK-AFG trade quantum and relationship”.

Governments have their own priorities and it takes time for them to take initiatives, private entities (B2B) must be agile in connecting with their neighbourly trade partners especially in Afghanistan. Presently Pakistan needs coal for meeting energy needs and private importers took initiative to bring coal from Afghanistan; serving the needs of both the countries. Pakistani commodities and consumables had 95% share in Afghan imports which are now down to 65%, lost 35% share to China, Iran and India due to lack of coordination and slow approach towards sustainable trade policy viz-a-viz Afghanistan and CAR.

Motiwala established that there is a serious need to revise our approach towards trade with Afghanistan and CAR focusing strongly on bilateral trade which is efficient and cost effective for both countries. Leaving space for other regional countries has negatively impacted the trade volume and balance. We share 2800 KM border with Afghanistan, both have necessary infrastructure at operational border crossings however this is being rendered unproductive due to lack of coordination0 at government levels whereas private entities are also lagging behind.

He strongly urged private organizations to take lead and increase bilateral trade within existing framework while providing input to resolve operational and policy matters to respective governments. From the platform of PAJCCI we will continue to provide technical input to both governments in areas of policy making, removing trade barriers and pursuing matters of TAD, SRO on cross stuffing, adding items to PKR trading category, matters of sales tax and duty draw back claims in case of land routes, cash counters at borders, APTTA revision, capacity building of Afghan human resources, exchange of B2B delegations, formation of border bazaars, ease of visa facility for Afghan businessmen and formation of Joint National Customs Committee comprising of Custom officials from both sides. He also offered PAJCCI women directors support to Afghan business women participants and welcomed the idea of online meetings with them to foster their active participation in trade community.

Khan Jan Alokozai; Co-Chairman PAJCCI and head of Afghan delegation thanked all PAJCCI Executive members especially Zubair Motiwala for his continued efforts in resolving issues and support in increasing trade with Afghanistan. He also appreciated government of Pakistan and its entities for their efforts in trade facilitation especially Pakistan Customs at Torkham in reducing congestion and priority clearance of perishable items.

He said that efforts must be made to implement barter trade mechanism by both governments, joint border and national committee formation for proactive coordination in regards to any policy changes and new initiatives. The meeting was attended by PAJCCI Executive members, Afghan delegation, DG Transit Trade, TDAP, representative of KPT and bonded carrier companies along with other custom officials and CRSS team.

For more information, contact:
Pakistan Afghanistan Joint Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PAJCCI)
Tel: +92-21-99218024-7
Fax: +92-21-99218028
Email: info@pajcci.com
Website: http://www.pajcci.com/