IRU (www.IRU.org) member, PNC-ICC, issued the first TIR carnet this week to Pakistani transport operator, TCS Logistics, ahead of the departure today, which is marked by a ceremony in Karachi.
Today’s launch follows recent meetings in Istanbul between Afghanistan and Pakistan – where TIR was highlighted as the customs standard to facilitate transport and transit between the two countries and the two TIR actors agreed to initiate test operations from Karachi to Kabul and vice versa.
Savings in time and costs were already reported by an Afghan transport operator last week, which sent three trucks from Torkham, Afghan-Pakistan border crossing point, to Dushanbe, Tajikistan using TIR. TIR was also particularly useful in avoiding large trans-shipment costs at the border with Tajikistan.
IRU Secretary General, Umberto de Pretto, said, “With The TIR system now live in Pakistan, we will see the potential unleashed for Pakistan to become a pivotal transit country linking China to the Middle East and Africa.”
Mr. Muhammad Javed Ghani, Director General Transit Trade from Pakistan Customs added, “The TIR system offers a solution for harmonised processes at borders across the region and we should now see cross border transport and transit become much more streamlined and secured.”
Tariq M. Rangoonwala, Chair of PNC-ICC, added, “We are delighted to see the first TIR trucks leaving Karachi today. This is the next milestone in our strategy to streamline transport and trade in the region, which will benefit the economies and the communities along these corridors in Pakistan and beyond.”
There is now full momentum to use TIR in more transit routes from neighbouring countries including Pakistan and Iran to Central Asia to reduce the cost and time of regional transports even further. The activation of these corridors, which straddle East and West, is critical to the development of the region and the advancement of trade.
Next steps include the activation of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) under the TIR system, which will connect China with the Middle East and Africa.
In addition, the Istanbul-Tehran-Islamabad trade corridor, which has the potential to link Pakistan to the markets of Iran, Central Asia, Turkey and eventually Europe will be activated under TIR system and saw the first inbound TIR operation from Iran to Pakistan earlier this year.Distributed by APO Group on behalf of International Road Transport Organisation (IRU).