Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Kabul-Delhi air cargo corridor new round of Great Game

Seven years after Pakistan refused to allow Afghan trucks carrying Indian goods to return home from the Wagah border, in spite of the July 2010 Afghanistan Pakistan Trade and Transit Agreement (APTTA), Kabul and Delhi have established an air freight corridor that will facilitate the movement of goods to each others’ markets.
The landmark Ariana flight, carrying 60 tonnes of asafoetida or heeng, was flagged off by Afghan President Ashraf Ghani from Kabul airport on June 19, and received in Delhi three hours later by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj.
Afghan heeng has especially been valued by the north Indian palate since time immemorial, but it certainly wasn’t food that both leaderships have had on their minds these past several years. Make no mistake, the air freight corridor is a political message to Pakistan and the rest of the international community, that Delhi will not abandon Kabul despite the deteriorating security situation in the country.
27/06/17 Jyoti Malhotra/Indian Express