PESHAWAR: Business, trade and jobs not to be shifted from Torkham station as collection of government taxes, duties  at this point is about US $ 5 billion, Custom Collector Peshawar Qurban Ali said while speaking to a gathering of Shinwari tribe elders and custom clearing agents at Landikotal here on Thursday.

He dispelled an impression that that government was shifting business, trade and jobs from Torkham station to Jamrud dry port, saying that annually Torkham Custom station is giving profit of more than 3 billion dollars which would be enhanced up to US $5 billion.

He said that if the Shinwari tribe elders were willing, the government could build another custom station at Landikotal besides Torkham, adding that Jamrud dry port would be  established soon to cater to the needs of the custom keeping in view the growing trade on this route. He also said that 5 laks tons sugar would be exported to Afghanistan for which the labour at Torkham would not be sufficient.

Custom Collector Qurban Ali said that government has established a new department for Chaman, Torkham and Wahga borders known as Pakistan Land Port Authority so that trade and business could be boosted. He said that government was interested in facilitating tribal people.

He lauded the sacrifices of the tribal people for Pakistan. Illegal business and export would be strictly forbidden and checked at any cost in the interests of the country, he said, adding that after collection of taxes the government was spending this money on the development of the country.

Meanwhile Nasir Khan Shinwari, Mufti Ijaz Shinwari and Masal Khan in their speeches requested the Peshawar Custom Collector Qurban Ali not to shift  trade facilities from Torkham to Jamrud as it could have a very negative impacts on the social life of the people in Landikotal. They offered their services to government and custom authorities if they needed any land or other facility at Torkham or any where else in Landikotal.

They argued that after shifting of custom clearance facility from Torkham to Jamrud, thousands of labour and custom clearing agents would suffer.