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India gives direct access to Afghan trucks

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AT-KABUL: Following reports about banning Afghan traders to not access Attari area of India’s Punjab state based on the Afghan Pakistan Transit and Trade Agreement (APTTA), the Indian government on Saturday announced that Afghan traders are allowed to access the area and unload their trucks at Integrated Check Post in Attari.

The Indian Embassy in Kabul said in a press release that such a restriction would severely curtail Afghanistan’s access to the Indian market, adding that it may be mentioned that India provides duty free access to the Indian market for all Afghanistan’s export products under the Agreement of South Asia Free Trade Area (SAFTA).

“In view of this and to give a fillip to Afghanistan’s exports to India and to reduce the transaction costs for Afghan exporters, the government of India offers to allow Afghan trucks (carrying their export products) to directly unload at its Integrated Check Post in Attari,” the source said. “We hope that this offer will overcome the limitation currently being faced by Afghanistan and also contribute to greater regional integration which is an objective pursued by all members of SAARC,” the source added.