Emeline Hubert
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Transit Trade Agreement Between Pakistan And Afghanistan

Due to tensions between Hamid Karzai`s government and Pakistan, much of the APTTA provisions remained unused after 2010. Pakistan is Afghanistan`s largest trading partner[22] and Afghanistan is Pakistan`s fourth largest export market. Banking contacts between the two countries remain undeveloped, although Pakistan`s trade minister pledged in 2015 to improve those contacts. [22] Relations between the two neighbors have been difficult in recent years, with both sides accusing each other of supporting the activists and providing them with means of refuge. The agreement allowed Pakistan access to any country bordering Afghanistan, with access to Iran through the borders of Islam Qila and Zaranj, Uzbekistan through the border with Hairatan, Tajikistan through the Ali Khanum and Sher Khan Bandar crossing points, and Turkmenistan through the Aqina and Torghundi crossings. Pakistani imports and exports are allowed to enter Afghanistan through the Torkham, Ghulam Khan and Shaman crossings. [19] « Pakistan remains firmly committed to further strengthening its bilateral relations with Afghanistan in all areas, including trade, and to facilitating Afghanistan`s transit trade within the framework of APTTA, » the statement concluded. Afghan President Ashraf Ghani made it clear in 2015 that Tajikistan cannot be included in the trade agreement until Indian goods are offered the right to export goods to Afghanistan via Pakistani territory[29], which is in direct contradiction with Articles 5 and 52 of the signed agreement, which expressly prohibits this right to Indian goods and carriers. [33] [34] The Afghanistan-Pakistan Transit Agreement (also known as APTTA) is a bilateral trade agreement signed by Pakistan and Afghanistan in 2010 that calls for greater facilitation of trade in goods between the two countries. APTTA calls for various measures to combat the smuggling of duty-free goods to Pakistan and Afghanistan, by imposing cargo tracking devices, bank guarantees and special transit carrier licences for transit trucks, vehicle tracing systems and container security bonds.

[20] The implementation of the treaty has been inconsistent and both sides have complained about the persistence of trade barriers. In October 2010, Pakistan`s Minister of Commerce, Makhdoom Amin Fahim, and Anwar ul-Haq Ahady, Afghan Ministry of Commerce, signed the pioneering APTTA agreement. Richard Holbrooke, U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, attended the ceremony, along with a number of foreign ambassadors, Afghan parliamentarians and senior officials. [13] Afghan transit trade (ATT) through Pakistan is often a bone of contention between the two countries. Afghanistan deplores the fact that Pakistan is a major obstacle to transit trade, with frequent changes in the rules. In contrast, Pakistan accuses Afghan traders of flagrant abuses of the ATT, which has led to rampant smuggling and the closure of domestic industry. In addition, the Pakistani government is often under pressure from its « friends » to relax transit trade rules, as well as other interest groups who fear that Pakistan will lose its ability to « manage » Afghanistan if Pakistan plays a smaller role in Afghan transit trade. In 2015, the Pakistan Business Council (PBC) published a study analyzing the flow of Afghan transit traffic through Pakistan over a 10-year period. The aim of the 2015 study was to see if significant changes have taken place over the years in transit trade, particularly since the signing in 2010 of the multilateral agreement « negotiated » between Afghanistan and Pakistan.

According to the statement, Pakistan has brought Afghan bilateral trade and transit trade back to all border crossing terminals to pre-COVID-19 status. Like the results of the 2015 study, the recent study shows that Pakistan remains the preferred transit route for Afghan imports, which supply 54% of Afghan transit imports in 2015. . .


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