Karachi: The business communities across the border are very keen to strengthen bilateral business ties; therefore it is imperative to nourish the opportunities for mutual benefits.
This was stated by Zubair Motiwala: Co-President PAJCCI at an “Interactive session between Pakistan Customs in collaboration with PAJCCI and Afghan Consulate in Karachi” organized by Directorate General of Training and Research (Customs).
Motiwala appreciated initiative of DGTR for holding such forum whereby presence of representatives from Afghan consulate: Ministry of Commerce: relevant custom officials and stakeholders was ensured to deliberate upon resolution of those hindrances that hampers both transit and bilateral trade amongst Pakistan and Afghanistan.
While speaking on the forum: Motiwala elaborated upon the initiatives of PAJCCI in a span of two years for enhancement of stakeholders’ confidence across the border.
Motiwala deliberated upon the dire need to constitute committee as discussed in APTTCA meeting including PAJCCI director from each side: custom officials: commercial counselors which would be critical to help resolve day-to-day operational issues on prompt basis. He reiterated that tariff rationalization across the border is the only solution for countering parallel trade between the two countries and the work in this context should be initiated promptly.
He emphasized greatly on the significance of establishing Export House or Trading Warehouse for the business and trading community across the border under PAJCCI’s umbrella with due support from Governments on both the sides. This concept would eliminate issues related to quality specifications: trust deficit: insurance and payment matters and will build the confidence amongst each other.
He also raised issues pertinent to execution of APTTA 2010 in its true essence and supported that Afghan trucks may be allowed to reach Wagah border: physical examination and partial shipments should be dealt as agreed: waiver of detention and demurrage charges may be ensured in case there are operational delays caused due to ineffective scanners: lack of labor etc. He further established that banking channels must be improvised to support the trade and improvement in infrastructure and secured transportation mode must be done to reap the actual benefits of trade not only with Afghanistan but also with CAREC region.
He requested Commercial attaché: Afghanistan to facilitate the requirement of providing one-year multiple visa to Pakistani traders and businessmen on reciprocal basis. Additionally he sought waiver of charges: imposed on Pakistani businesses doing transit trade with CIS countries: on reciprocal basis.
Motiwala also raised issues faced by the clearing agents in context of NATO / ISAF scandal whereby he established that PAJCCI believe in proper inquiry and investigation but the timelines should be revisited and the process should be expedited. Number of agents belongs to Chaman and Peshawar and need to visit Karachi very frequently for court hearings that causes both time and monetary losses.
Motiwala reiterated that efforts of DGTR in bringing stakeholders together at one platform is very forthcoming and PAJCCI would join hands with DGTR in all of its future endeavors focused on facilitating bilateral ties between Pakistan and Afghanistan.