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KARACHI: Atif Ikram Sheikh, President FPCCI, has apprised that the Chaman border has been closed once again for the past one week; and, thousands of trucks and other vehicles have been stuck under vulnerable, uncertain and hostile circumstances.

It is complete chaos once again on the important and indispensable trade route between Pakistan and Afghanistan, he added.

He henceforth, demanded that Chaman border should be opened immediately to alleviate the sufferings and financial losses of the traders – and, allow essential supplies like food and medicines to get through the border. It is a humanitarian and socioeconomic crisis as well, he added.

Atif Ikram Sheikh explained that Chaman border nestled in the heart of the region’s complex geopolitical landscape; and, has long been a significant point of interaction between Pakistan and Afghanistan, particularly as a hub for cross-border trade between the two neighbouring countries.

FPCCI Chief maintained that this kind of blockages over and over again over the past five years has eroded the government’s authority resulting in precarious law & order situation in the border area. Ironically, law & order in that area is an utmost necessity for being a difficult terrain, trade route and border crossing.

He added that this has become a routine occurrence; whereas, small mobs, smugglers and outlaws frequently close the border area – disrespecting law of the land and inflicting immense losses to the law-abiding traders of both the sides.

This situation highlights the challenges faced by the government in maintaining control and writ of the government to ensure the smooth flow of goods and services in the region. The frequent closure of the Chaman border has significant financial, economic and humanitarian implications, particularly for the people of Balochistan.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2024

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