Pakistan allows Afghan trucks to carry export goods to Wagah

Islamabad, Oct 7 (Calcutta Tube) Pakistan has granted permission to Afghan trucks to carry export goods to the Wagah border for onward dispatch to India, a minister said.

The federal government Wednesday approved a revised Afghanistan-Pakistan Transit Trade Agreement that allows Afghan trucks up to the Wagah border. Under the old agreement, the Afghan trucks were permitted to carry goods only to the Pakistan-Afghanistan border at Torkham.

Information Minister Qamar Zaman Kaira said that that the new agreement was an improved form of the treaty signed by the two countries in 1965.

Dawn reported that Pakistan and Afghanistan had finalised the new agreement July 19 this year but the move sparked a public outburst. Critics said it was done under US pressure for the benefit of India.

Now, in the new agreement, Afghan trucks will be allowed to carry goods to the Wagah border, but they will not be allowed to carry Indian goods to Afghanistan. In return, Pakistani trucks will be allowed to go through Afghanistan to central Asia, Iran and Turkey.

Analysts are of the opinion that the agreement was a failure of the US initiative that was meant to provide India a land route through Pakistan to Afghanistan.

Afghan goods will be permitted to pass through Pakistan only in sealed containers having tracking devices and goods will be re-examined and certified while leaving the border at Torkham.

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