A credible banking system is imperative for trade between Pak-Iran at the border as Iranian Counsel General in Quetta Agha Muhammad Rafique has said, unfortunately implementation is yet to be started on agreements signed amid Pakistan and Iran added illegal trade was being flourished due to lack of Banking Channel System.
“Pakistani and Iranian Officials formed a joint Pak-Iran Chamber of Commerce and signed various trade deals, but implementation on signed agreements was yet to be started.” Agha Muhammad Rafique said added hurdle between Pak-ran trade should be remove in order to enhance bilateral trade.
“Although since Imran Khan elected as Prime Minister, Pak-Iran a relation has strengthened but still there was economic and trade issues which needs to be addressed in order to par up Pak-Iran trade up to five billion dollars.”
Talking on Pak-Iran Banking Channel system the Iranian Counsel General said, we can’t prevent illegal trade from Taftan border until we establish Banking Channel at Pak-Iran border.
Pakistan was trading with around 70 countries out of which 10 countries are without proper banking system.
Pakistan and Iran government should make effort to establish reliable banking system at border to stop illegal trade.
Pakistan shares 900 kilometers long land border with Iran and the international border are completely peaceful and friendly without any major complaints from any side for the past seven decades. Baloch people are residing on both sides of the international frontier. Both the countries had no territorial dispute unlike Afghanistan.
The whole world is anxious to establish trade relations except Pakistan for unknown reasons, Delegations after delegations, led by top political leaders of their respective countries, are visiting Iran and offering economic cooperation or making investment there.
There are hundreds of check posts manned by security officials, mainly border guards, Iranian petrol and diesel passed through all the check posts with cast iron guarantees and manage to reach Punjab and Sindh for sale.
Smuggling of petrol and diesel is patronized in a very big way and it is not possible for the Government to stop it, to say it precisely. Only a revolutionary Government can stop it. For this reason, the Government functionaries were found opposing normal and legal trade between Iranian and Pakistani Balochistan.
Interestingly, people doing legal imports and exports were harassed and their legal consignment impounded and their documents destroyed before their eyes. In other words, they were bluntly told to do smuggling and stop legal import and exports as they get nothing from this legal trade.
Interestingly, in the past, the top Pakistani delegate had opposed an Iranian official proposal to establish 10 trade points on the vast or 900 kilometers long borders with Iranian Balochistan. The top Pakistani delegate who happened to be a Customs boss registered strong reservations at the spot without consulting the main stake holder—the representative Government of Balochistan in Quetta. He recorded his strong reservations and suggested it to reduce the trade points from 10 to only five places and for unexplained reasons. It was opposed because it is unwanted practice and not permissible in place like Balochistan where the Federal Government is not interested to establish Utility Stores on the Pakistani territory.
We suggest the Chief Minister should visit Iran and turn the tide by inviting Iranian investment on this part of Balochistan developing its infrastructure first followed by other economic and industrial projects. It should begin with modest efforts by establishing dozens of border markets, regulating trade to discourage smuggling of goods for the benefits of the smugglers or the border guards and not for the people in general. The Chief Minister, Jam Kamal Khan, should convert the informal trade or popularly known as smuggling into a formal trade and registered economy so that State should earn revenue for the benefit of the people in general and the profit should not go to the smugglers and border guards.