The Specialized Committee Meeting of Transportation of ECO Chamber of Commerce & Industry (ECO-CCI) was held via video link and attended by representatives of the Chambers of Commerce & Industry of member countries including Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Iran, Kyrgyz Republic, Turkey, Uzbekistan and Pakistan and ECO Secretariat. Shaikh Sultan Rehman, Vice President of the Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI), Baber Iqbal FPCCI Convener of the Specialized Committee on Transportation (Pakistan Chapter) attended the meeting from Pakistan.
Shaikh Sultan Rehman Vice President FPCCI stated the development of an efficient transport system in ECO region will lower the transportation costs and improve the competitiveness of member countries. He also emphasized on the operationalization of Islamabad Tehran Istanbul cargo train project, KTAI project by completing rehabilitation and construction of missing links of the existing railway routes. He urged the member countries to implement ECO- Transit Transport Framework Agreement (TTFA) and which will reduce transportation cost and acceleration of the transport services through harmonization and modernization of transit transport, facilitation of movement of goods and passengers, ensuring the safety of goods and passengers and avoiding unnecessary delays during the transit traffic, avoidance of incidence of customs frauds, tax evasion and harmonizing necessary administrative affairs in the region.
Mr. Baber Iqbal Convener of the Specialized Committee on Transportation also highlighted the issues faced by Pakistan during COVID-19 which affects the border and air cargo trade. He also discussed CPEC which will bring prosperity and development in the region by providing transit to Central Asian countries through Pakistan to Middle East and Africa through shortest route and low cost of trade to the land locked member countries.
During the meeting, the participants shared the experience of pandemic and measures taken by their government for facilitating the transportation and discussed in details the issues of operationalizing of TIR convention which may help in reducing cost of transportation and increase competitiveness, ITI, KTAI train, cross border transport agreement, Afghan transit trade agreement, transit cargo were emphasized. Moreover, the participants suggested training session for trader and transporter on TIR by TOBB and sharing of Border gate experience by TOBB.