Through the new Afghanistan-Pakistan Transit Trade Agreement (APTTA), Afghan entrepreneurs are able to transport their goods more rapidly and at lower costs to new markets in Pakistan and beyond.
The agreement will help Afghanistan realize its enormous trade and investment potential by increasing transparency, reducing obstacles to trade, increasing public outreach, and building the capacity of the Afghan government to negotiate and implement regional and global trade agreements.
Advisors from the USAID Trade and Accession Facilitation for Afghanistan Project (TAFA) project worked with Afghanistan’s negotiating team to help them reach accommodations on disputed issues, particularly concerning measures to counter smuggling and to develop a dispute resolution mechanism.
The resulting agreement, which was signed in October of 2010, improves efficiency and speed for regional trade and gives Afghan exporters access through Pakistan to the 1.2 billion people in India and 1.3 billion in China, and to the rest of the world through the Pakistani seaports of Karachi, Qa-sim, and Gwador.
APTTA benefits Afghanistan while also supporting Pakistan’s economic growth and development. Pakistan gains better market access to Central Asia and beyond, and to important raw materials for its industries. The agreement will help the country’s exporters earn up to $2 billion annually.
The new system increases the number of transport routes available to trucks from both countries, lowers the cost of imports, and makes exports of both countries more competitive.
The agreement will create jobs and services in both Pakistan and Afghanistan and will also contribute to greater regional security as the two countries work together for APTTA’s swift implementation. APTTA paves the way for Afghanistan to grow into a strong, prosperous and peaceful country