TORKHAM: Collectorate of Customs Additional Collector Muhammad Tayyab has said that a modern terminal is being constructed at the Torkham border crossing in line with international standards in collaboration with the Asian Development Bank (ADB) to boost economic activities on the Pak-Afghan border.
The state-of-the-art Integrated Transit Trade Management System (ITTMS) is under construction and expected to increase the country’s trade volume with Afghanistan and the Central Asian countries.
The construction of the project will facilitate the clearance of trade goods under one window system for bilateral trade with Afghanistan and the Central Asian countries.
He said that Pakistan had signed a trade facilitation agreement with World Trade Organisation (WTO) in 2015 and Pakistan had achieved 80% of the targets of the agreement. Thus, Pakistan moved from 136th to 108th position in the World Bank rankings. “One window system has been introduced for clearance of commercial items at Torkham border.” After completion of the project, the terminal will be able to accommodate more than 500 cargo vehicles at a time.
The additional collector further said that the new terminal would save time and cost for cargo vehicles and enable traders to earn more profit in less time and at a lower cost.
The additional collector said that a customs station building would also be constructed at Torkham Transit Terminal which will be equipped with modern facilities including online system. Under this system, he said 77 different agencies and departments will be connected with customs.
In this regard, Deputy Collector Customs Torkham, Amanat Khan said that there has been a gradual innovation in the bilateral trade and clearance system at the Torkham border crossing. He said that in 1980 there was a manual system for clearance of commercial goods. The online system was introduced in 1992.
Another modern system was introduced in 2005 for the clearance of commercial goods, while traders and transporters now use the modern system, he added.
Following the completion of ITTMS project, traders and economists expect that the country’s exports are expected to increase by 37 per cent, he maintained.