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India-Afghanistan Business Connect held in Mumbai

India-Afghanistan Business Connect held in Mumbai

Jan 23, 2020 - 12:51

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok):  The Afghan consulate in Mumbai partnered with the United States Agency for International Development (USAIDinfo-icon) and the Indian Chamber of International Business (ICIB) to host the India-Afghanistaninfo-icon Business Connect 2020.

The conference was held at the Afghan consulate in Walkeshwar, Mumbai, on Tuesday, a statement from the Afghan embassy in India said. Over 150 companies, chambers of commerce representatives, banks, importers and exporters attended the event.

Naseem Sharifi, Afghan consul-general in Mumbai, announced the formation of Indo-Afghan Business Societyinfo-icon to support trade ties between the two countries.

The statement said Sharifi appreciated sincere support from the Maharashtra government for promoting India–Afghanistan trade in Mumbai.

He admired the warmth of Indian people for Afghan exports. The diplomat emphasised on the role of Chabahar Port and Kabul-Delhi air corridors in promoting Afghanistan’s exports to India.

India has been developing the Chabahar port to boost Afghanistan’s access to the sea. Arun Kumar Gupta, managing director of Indian Ports Global Private Limited, said: “The port is an important gateway to a prosperous Afghanistan.”

The Chabahar port should be patronised by every Indian businessman to boost the bilateral trade level to $2 billion, Gupta added.

Abdul Nafi Sarwari, Afghan commercial attaché, presented data underscoring the importance of India as a trading partner. India is Afghanistan’s second largest export partner (after Pakistaninfo-icon), and sixth largest import partner.

Afghanistan’s notable exports include fresh and dry fruits, medicinal herbs, spices, gums, vegetable saps and extracts, carpets, rugs and gemstones.

He also referred to the South Asia Free Trade Area (SAFTA), Preferential Trade Agreement between India and Afghanistan (PTA), the Joint Air Corridor, and the Chabahar port.

Manpreet Singh, president of the Indian Chamber of International Business, said: “People need to think about the long-term strategic role Afghanistan plays in regional trade, and its ability to connect India with Central Asia.

India-Afghanistan Business Connect 2020 shared information with private sector stakeholders about business opportunities and managing logistics for trade between India and Afghanistan.

Attendees also heard from Indian businesses on doing business with Afghanistan. Also in attendance were representatives from various trade chambers such as the All India Association of Industries (AIAI), Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), Federation of Indian Export Organizations (FIEO), Trans Asian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (TACCI), Maharashtra Chamber of Commerce Industries and Agricultureinfo-icon (MCCIA), All India Manufacturers' Organization (AIMO), and the Small and Medium Business Development Chamber of India (SME Chamber of India).
India-Afghanistan Business Connect 2020 is the first in a series of events following the annual Passage to Prosperity: India – Afghanistan International Trade and Investment Show, which has been instrumental in boosting economic growth.

USAID sponsored the Passage to Prosperity (P2P) International Trade and Investment Shows, which were hosted in collaboration with the governments of Afghanistan and India.


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