Due to the closure of the Pakistan-China border, which has now lasted around two years, traders who rely on this land route have begun demonstrating in Islamabad, lamenting the huge harm the shutdown has caused their businesses.
The business community has set a deadline of one week for the border’s reopening and warned of sit-ins in Islamabad and Gilgit Baltistan (GB).
Traders in the United Kingdom expressed frustration with the ongoing closure of the Sost border.
At a press conference in Islamabad, a delegation of British traders led by Exporters Association Chairman Javed Hussain pleaded with Prime Minister Imran Khan, Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa, the foreign and commerce ministers, and the Chinese ambassador to Pakistan to reopen the Pak-China border for trade.
Following this commercial, the article continues.
Hussain stated that traders have lost millions of rupees as a result of the border shutdown. “If their demands are not met, all traders in the region will be forced to stage peaceful sit-ins outside Khunjerab Pass, the Parliament House, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.”
He stated that Pak-China is the region’s sole source of revenue for both small and large traders.
China has borders with Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan, and normal trade is still permitted, while the Pakistan-China border remains blocked.
According to Hussain, the Pakistani Foreign Ministry has issued a notification authorising the reopening of the Pakistan-China border. However, the Chinese authorities have refused to follow the notification, resulting in the damage of items imported from China by Pakistani businessmen in Kashgar warehouses, potentially resulting in further loss of millions.
Additionally, the items from Diamerbhasha, Dasu, and Mohmand Dams are decaying in Kashgar’s warehouses.
It should be recalled that China previously promised to open the Khunjerab border for trade, albeit on strict terms in light of the Covid-19 issue. Pakistani exporters and importers would not be permitted to enter China under the Chinese government’s terms and would instead load and unload items on Pakistan’s side of the border for inspection and sterilisation.
It was agreed that Chinese exporters would leave the items in a designated site on Pakistan’s side of the border, from which importers may collect them in accordance with the SOPs. Similarly, exporters would leave their goods in the same spot where Chinese purchasers would receive them following the completion of the same process on their side of the border.
According to records obtained by Profit, both sides’ people and vehicles were told to work in separate time zones in order to avoid direct interaction. When the cargo inspection channel is opened, loading and unloading, dropping and hanging up the trailer must all be done independently.
However, despite guarantees from both governments, the border has remained blocked to bilateral trade for unknown reasons.