Want to see India join Afghan trade pact with Pak: Karzai

FP

Afghanistan would like India included in its trade and transit agreement with Pakistan, in force since 2011, which would allow India to use Pakistan's territory to trade with Afghanistan, Afghan President Hamid Karzai has said.

"We have been seeking it," he said an interview to The Indian Express. "This was not possible because of the difficulties between India and Pakistan but now that there is an environment for overall improvement of relations between India and Pakistan, this is the best day for Afghanistan," he said.

Karzai felt Afghanistan would benefit a lot if that should happen, as it would bring in huge cost-efficiency in trade with

India. "The better it gets between India and Pakistan in all aspects of life, the better Afghanistan's chances are of a better economy, a more prosperous country," he said.

In Mumbai to meet business leaders and urge them to invest in Afghanistan in various fields, especially in minerals, petroleum and gas, he said Indian businesses should not shy away from investing in Afghanistan and security issues are not a threat to businesses. "No business has been hampered or slowed down by lack of security," he said.

The presence of Pakistan and China in business in Afghanistan, he said, should not deter India.

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