Fuel, gas imports resume through Hairatan and Aqina ports
Balkh’s Chamber of Commerce and Investment said Sunday that imports of fuel and gas through Hairatan and Aqina ports have resumed.
This comes amid complaints by motorists and residents in Balkh of rising fuel and gas prices.
One Balkh taxi driver said that due to the high price of fuel and gas he has not been able to turn a profit in recent weeks.
Motorists called on the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan to monitor the situation and get suppliers to drop their prices.
Balkh residents said they pay 61 AFN per liter for fuel and 70 AFN per kilogram for gas.
Balkh’s Chamber of Commerce and Investment said that limitations on US Dollar trading have resulted in the spike in prices.
Seventy percent of Afghanistan’s fuel and gas is imported through three northern border crossings but stopped for a few weeks due to a shortage of foreign currency.
Uzbekistan, Pakistan discuss construction of railway through Afghanistan
Uzbekistan’s Special Representative Ismatulla Irgashev and Pakistan’s Ambassador in Tashkent, Ahmad Farooq, on Thursday met and discussed the construction of the Termez–Mazar-e-Sharif–Kabul–Peshawar railway.
A thorough exchange of views took place on the current situation in Afghanistan and the efforts of the international community and both countries to expand cooperation in the Afghan direction, Uzbekistan’s foreign ministry said in a statement.
Pakistan’s envoy emphasized the significant role of Uzbekistan in establishing a long-term and sustainable peace in Afghanistan, as well as involving the country in regional integration processes, the statement said.
The parties also discussed ongoing transport and communication projects in Afghanistan, in particular, the construction of the Termez–Mazar-e-Sharif–Kabul–Peshawar railway, it added.
Pakistan passes order to allow barter trade with Afghanistan, Iran, Russia
Pakistan has passed a special order to allow barter trade with Afghanistan, Iran and Russia for certain goods, including petroleum and gas, the Ministry of Commerce said on Friday.
Left with barely enough foreign exchange reserves to cover one month’s imports, Pakistan’s government is desperately trying to manage a balance of payments crisis and bring inflation under control after it hit a record of nearly 38% last month, Reuters reported.
The government order, called the Business-to-business (B2B) Barter Trade Mechanism 2023 and dated June 1, lists goods that can be bartered. State and privately owned entities would need approval to participate in the trade mechanism.
After Pakistan’s first purchase of discounted Russian oil in April, petroleum minister Musadik Malik told Reuters that Pakistan would only be buying crude, not refined products under the deal.
There was no confirmation about how the payment would be made. But, Malik said purchases could rise to 100,000 barrels per day (bpd) if the first transaction went smoothly.
Last year, Pakistan imported 154,000 bpd of crude oil, little changed from 2021, data from analytics firm Kpler showed.
In May, Pakistan Petroleum Dealers Association complained that up to 35% of the diesel sold in Pakistan had been smuggled from Iran.
Pakistan’s government has also ordered a clamp down on smuggling of flour, wheat, sugar, and fertilizer to Afghanistan.
Ministry of mines promises major investment in Sar-e Pul mines
The Ministry of Mines and Petroleum (MoMP) says in the next seven months, about $148 million will be invested in extracting mines in Sar-e Pul province.
In a trip to the province on Thursday, Minister of Mines and Petroleum Shahabuddin Delawar said that the process of investing in Sar-e-Pul mines will begin soon.
Delawar has promised the residents of Sar-e Pul that practical work regarding development in this province will begin within the next seven months.
At the meeting, local authorities and residents of the province also presented their suggestions for the development of the province.
Speeding up the work of mining, recruiting educated young people in the mining process, and implementing construction projects from revenue obtained from the mines are among the most basic demands that were expressed at the meeting.
He also pledged that besides taking care of the basic needs of the people, priority will be given to employing professional youth in the province.
“So far, the vast works of this project have not started and those youths of this province who are professional will be employed,” said Delawar.
Sar-e Pul province in the north of the country, has coal mines and oil and is one of the wealthiest provinces in terms of untapped minerals.
Qashgari oil wells, which are in this province, are already operational.
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