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500,000 tonnes of Kazakh fuel to be imported

500,000 tonnes of Kazakh fuel to be imported

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Oct 03, 2011 - 17:09

KABULinfo-icon (PANinfo-icon): The Afghan government has signed an agreement with Kazakhstan on the import of 500,000 tonnes of fuel, an official said on Monday.

The Ministry of Commerce and Industries has started preparations for the import, a ministry spokesman, Wahidullah Ghazikhel, told Pajhwok Afghan News.

Although fuel is stored at Hairatan Dry Port in northern Balkh province, Afghanistaninfo-icon still needed to sign agreements with other countries, he explained.

On September 27, an agreement was signed between the Afghan Ministry of Commerce and Industries and Kazakhstan on expanding trade ties between the two countries.

Wheat and flour would also be imported in large quantity to Afghanistan under the agreement, Minister of Commerce and Industries Anwar-ul-Haq Ahadi said. Most of the stuff would be imported by the private sector.

In August, three semi-government Russian companies agreed to sell Afghanistan 500,000 tonnes fuel annually. The landlocked country needs more than three million tonnes of fuel each year.

Meanwhile, the Afghanistan Chamber of Commerce and Industries (ACCI) spokesman, Ahmad Tawfiq Dawari, said the 150,000 tonnes of fuel at Hairatan port was inadequate and could not meet the government's requirements.

He added the government was yet to take practical steps toward importing fuel from Russia. The private sector was ready to meet the country's needs in emergency situations, he said.

mm/frm/mud

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