Pakistan, Iran resume trade activities at Taftan border despite pandemic



The trade activities between Pakistan and Iran at the Taftan border crossing have resumed after remaining suspended for more than two months as Pakistan closed its border due to the outbreak of COVID-19, local media reported, quoting government officials, on Thursday.

The trade activities resumed between Pakistan and Iran on Wednesday after two trade crossing points, the Pakistan gate and zero-point trade gate, were reopened at the Taftan border, Zahoor Baloch, a government official in Taftan, told local media.

The trade activities between the two countries would continue thrice a week according to the standard operating procedures, the official said.

After the opening of the trade gates, some Iranian trailers loaded with food items and liquefied petroleum gas tankers arrived in Pakistan, according to the reports.

The decision regarding resumption of trade between the two countries was taken by the National Command and Operations Center of Pakistan in a recent meeting held in federal capital Islamabad, according to government officials.

Earlier in a telephone conversation last month, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani emphasized the necessity for the resumption of cross-border trade, reopening of the border markets, and strengthening the trade ties in conformity with the health regulations.

"The resumption of commodities exchange between the two countries will greatly help Pakistan's economy, which has encountered many problems due to the coronavirus," the prime minister said.