The United States on Wednesday welcomed Pakistan’s move to open its third border crossing with Afghanistan to facilitate trade between the two countries.
“Encouraged that Afghanistan and Pakistan have agreed to open a third border crossing at Ghulam Khan to facilitate trade between the two countries and help businesses/exporters get back on their feet,” the US State Department said in a tweet.
It added that the increased, uninterrupted Pak-Afghan trade and connectivity will bring benefits to both economies.
Encouraged that Afghanistan & Pakistan have agreed to open a 3rd border crossing at Ghulam Khan to facilitate trade between the two countries & help businesses/exporters get back on their feet. Increased, uninterrupted Af-Pak trade & connectivity bring benefits to both economies.
— State_SCA (@State_SCA) June 23, 2020
On Monday, Pakistan announced it was opening the third border crossing with Afghanistan for 24/7 trade. The Torkham, Chaman and Ghulam Khan borders have been opened to increase the volume of trade and to promote business activities between the two countries.
A notification issued by the Ministry of Interior said the three border terminals would remain open for imports and exports from and to Afghanistan, with an unlimited number of trucks to be allowed per day for both Afghan transit and bilateral trade.
The Foreign Office in a press release said the government decided to open the third border terminal at Ghulam Khan for bilateral trade and also to allow transit trade and imports from Afghanistan through the already opened Torkham and Chaman border points for six days.
“This arrangement on trade will be in operation for six days a week. Saturday will be reserved for pedestrian movement on these border crossing terminals. These steps are being taken after implementing all the necessary protocols related to COVID-19 pandemic,” the foreign office had said.
The decision was made keeping in view of both countries’ desire to further increase mutual trade, strong fraternal ties and upon the renewed Afghan Government’s request, it added.
“The opening of Ghulam Khan border crossing terminal and allowing imports from Afghanistan reflects Pakistan’s resolve to help Afghanistan and facilitate its trade.
The opening of Gwadar Port for Afghanistan’s export and import has further strengthened trade linkages between the two countries,” the Foreign Office added.