KABUL – In a momentous event, the very first cargo shipment from China bound for Afghanistan, having entered Pakistan through the Sost border at Khunjerab on August 28, 2023, has successfully crossed the Torkham border en route to its ultimate destination, Kabul.
This historic shipment was granted permission to traverse the ancient Silk Route, facilitated by the UN’s Transports Internationaux Routiers (TIR) Convention, which streamlines and economizes trade routes between nations across the globe.
The historic crossing of the first-ever Chinese cargo shipment for Afghanistan via the Khunjerab border has been touted as a positive sign of trade between Afghanistan and China. This development would not only enhance regional trade but also generate numerous employment opportunities for those involved in customs clearance, goods transportation, fuel business, daily wage labor, and more.
To commemorate this milestone, a ceremony was conducted at Torkham Zero Point, as announced in a press release issued on Saturday. Dignitaries and officials, including the Directorate of Transit Trade, Peshawar, Collectorates of Customs, Appraisement and Enforcement, Peshawar, representatives from the Pakistan Army and the National Logistics Cell (NLC), as well as delegates from the Afghan Gumrak and the Pak Afghan Chamber of Commerce, attended the event. Notably, Ziaul-Haq Sarhadi, Director of the Pak-Afghan Joint Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PAJCCI), graced the historic occasion with his presence.
“This remarkable initiative marks a significant breakthrough in the realm of transit trade and promises to bolster trade activities along the Pak-Afghan border, while strengthening economic ties with China, Afghanistan, and the Central Asian republics,” emphasized Pakistan’s Director of Transit Trade at Torkham Shamsur Rehman Wazir during his address at the ceremony. He further commended the China cargo convoy for reaching its destination safely and within the designated timeframe, highlighting the potential for Chinese businessmen to utilize this route for transporting goods to Afghanistan, thereby creating new avenues for commerce and livelihood in Pakistan.