The Kabul Times.
Economic

National Trade Policy codified: MoCI

The authorities of Ministry of Commerce and Industries (MoCI) said that for improvement of Afghanistan Trade situation and development, they have shared a policy with a number of private sector traders.
After elapse of 17 years, for the first time, a draft of new policy under the name of Trade National Policy has been prepared. Addressing a consultative meeting with officials of ACCI and a number of traders, deputy MoCI kamela Siddiqi said, following consultations, suggestions and opinions of private sector, this policy will be completed.
Talking on the policy importance Ms Siddiqi added, the Afghan government has concentrated on improving of economic relations with regional countries for trade development and has made a lot of efforts in this direction and the new N.T.P is a suitable means of achieving economic goals and is effective on economic growth.
According to information of the MoCI, a series of steps have been taken in the past inside the country for trade growth and expansion of trade-transit relations with regional countries but in current policy beside improving of domestic trade, global relations have also been considered.
In 2017, Afghanistan signed trade-transit agreements with India, Iran, Pakistan and central Asian countries.
But the ACCI says that these agreements mostly have not been adaptable with accepted trade norms and the Afghan traders have been facing problem.
Addressing the meeting, assistant chairperson of ACCI Khan Jan Alokozay said, during preparing and implementation of policies, the government doesn’t consider private sector situation, problems and suggestions. Our problems include security, political problems, corruption, complicated laws, lack of infrastructure etc. The government not only has not reduced the problems, but every year increases tariffs on private sectors.
He continued, in the last 17 years we have seen that here, the goal of business was not employment and exports but the goal was increase of government revenues and every year we sustain a compensation of US$ 250-500m.
The Afghan traders hope that in N.T.P all needs and demands of private sector would be inserted.
In his conversation with The Kabul Times, Haji Gulab a local national trader said that beside abovementioned problems our traders are facing illegal briberies on highways too.
According to him, the traders have to pay several illegal briberies for transportation of their goods to markets and without bribery transportation of commodities is impossible.
Economist Saifuddin Saihoon said, in new N.T.P all available conditions and problems must be considered and its way of implementation must be paved. Implementation of foreign policies which are translated, is difficult.
Shukria Kohistani

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The Kabul Times.