Imports down 50% in past year: ACCI

KABUL (TOLOnews): According to the Afghanistan Chamber of Commerce and Investment, in the last year Afghanistan imported less than one billion dollars worth of goods from neighbour country, down more than half from previous year.
The group added that Afghan business has decreased also with other countries. A member of the board of directors of this chamber said the reduced purchasing power of Afghans, an increase in domestic production, and banking restrictions in neighbour country are the main reasons.
“Approximately, it decreased to 1 billion, it means our imports neighbour country decreased fifty-five per cent,” said Khan Jan Alokozai, senior xice-chairman of the ACCI.
“We had more imports from neighbour country in the past but now it is the season for fresh fruit in Afghanistan, so we don’t need to import, we have export nows,” said a member of the chamber of commerce and investment.
The Pakistan-Afghanistan Joint Chamber of Commerce said Afghanistan exports to Pakistan increased recently.
“Bilateral trade between Afghanistan and Pakistan has decreased compared to other years; Afghanistan exports to Pakistan has increased but Pakistan export to Afghanistan has decreased.” Said Naqibullah Safi, membership and business development manager at Pakistan Afghanistan Joint Chamber of Commerce. The Ministry of Finance numbers howed that increased Afghanistan exports financially help the Islamic Emirate.
“Our imports have decreased but we have increase in our exports compared to previous years,” said Ahmad Wali Haqmal, spokesman of the Finance Ministry.
According to official statistics of the Ministry of Industry and Commerce, Afghanistan exports to Pakistan have reached more than 1.3 billion dollars and are expected to increase.