Following the halt of over three thousand containers belonging to Afghan traders in Karachi, the Taliban has urged Pakistan to release these shipments.
Pakistani officials have said that these goods are initially sent to Afghanistan with customs exemptions but are subsequently smuggled back into Pakistan.
Pakistan claims that Afghan traders have caused millions of dollars in financial losses to Pakistan by avoiding customs duties.
On Tuesday, AFP reported that Taliban officials said that Pakistan imposed excessive taxes and customs duties on Afghan traders, resulting in millions of dollars in damages due to the halt of containers.
A Taliban official from the consulate in Peshawar told AFP that hundreds of containers have been stopped since several months ago and some shipments have been detained for more than a year.
This Taliban official said that the goods inside the containers are getting worn out and the traders have suffered a lot of losses.
In a statement, the Afghan Embassy in Islamabad mentioned that Nooruddin Azizi, the Taliban’s Minister of Commerce and Industry, discussed transit issues concerning goods with the Foreign Minister of Pakistan on Monday. However, Pakistan has not publicly responded to this request as of yet.
Afghan businessmen face challenges in Pakistan while, in a tripartite meeting on Tuesday with the Taliban and Uzbekistan, Gohar Ejaz, the Minister of Industries of Pakistan, emphasised on the need for the continued and strengthened commercial and economic relations among these three countries. He demanded that all three nations should have access to new markets.
Ejaz stated that the tripartite meeting is an important step towards close economic cooperation and provides the basis for increasing trade, investment and economic relations.