Pakistan adheres to APTTA: Nafees Zakaria
Spokesman Foreign Office Nafees Zakaria , following the statement by Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, claimed that Pakistan has not yet stopped Afghan traders from moving their products across to India via Wagah border.
“Pakistan is fulfilling its commitment to the Afghan people by providing them a trade transit facility”, he said in an interview with an international Radio Station. He further clarified Islamabad’s bilateral agreement with Kabul which says that only Indian goods could not be imported into Afghanistan through Pakistan.
Zakaria’s statement was a response to Afghan President Ashraf Ghani’s threat of blocking Pakistan’s land access to Central Asia if it did not allow Afghan traders to take their goods to India via Wagah.
“If Pakistan does not allow Afghan traders to use the Wagah border for imports and exports of their goods, Afghanistan will also not allow Pakistan to use Afghan transit routes to reach Central Asia and other countries for exports,” he said in a meeting with the UK’s special envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan, Owen Jenkins, in Kabul on Friday.
It is pertinent to mention that Afghanistan–Pakistan Transit Trade Agreement (also known as APTTA) is a bilateral trade agreement which signed back in 1950 according to which Afghanistan has been allowed to import duty-free goods through Karachi sea ports as well as the dry port of Lahore through Wagah border importing good from India.