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Afghan Finance Minister believes Pakistanis are sincere in their pledges

in Afghan Business

Afghan Finance Minister believes Pakistanis are sincere in their pledges

Minister ZakhilwalAfghan Finance Minister Dr. Hazrat Omar Zakhilwal hopes that Pakistan will remain committed to the pledges made in the economic cooperation pact signed between Afghanistan and Pakistan on 27 August 2013.

In a bid to strengthen economic ties between the two nations, Afghan Finance Minister Dr. Hazrat Omar Zakhilwal and his Pakistani counterpart Minister Ishaq Dar signed an agreement on economic and trade cooperation.

The signing ceremony of the agreement took place in the presence of Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and the visiting Afghan President Hamid Karzai.

The two parties agreed on the following:

  • Completion of the projects initiated by Pakistan, including completion of the second lane of the Torkham-Jalalabad road in the next two weeks by Pakistan and extension of the Lahore-Peshawar motorway to Kabul
  • Accelerating efforts at importing electricity from Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan via Afghanistan to Pakistan by establishing a hydropower project on Kunar River that would potentially produce 1,500MW of electricity
  • Dar promised to resolve the transit issues Afghan traders face on Pakistani borders by writing off taxes on Afghan goods transported to India through Wagah border and annual duty on transit trade imposed by the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government. In return, Afghan government would provide more facilities to Pakistani traders for access to central Asian countries.
  • Construction of a 170km railroad between Peshawar and Jalalabad and a similar track between Chaman and Kanadahar
  • Pakistan would make operational a kidney center that had been established by Pakistan in Jalalabad

Minister Zakhilwal hoped Pakistan would honor the promises and believed practical steps on all the agreed projects would be initiated in September.

He added that a follow-up meeting would be held in October to assess the schemes.

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