Afghanistan crisis: Indian trade worth $1.5 billion stops abruptly as Afghans stare at bleak future

Prime News, National (New Delhi), August 24:- As lakhs flee Afghanistan and the Indian government evacuates nationals as well as refugees, the future of India-Afghanistan trade, which is worth more than a billion dollars, hangs in the balance.

Agriculture is the main source of income for the majority of Afghans and forms a major chunk of the country’s exports. With trade coming to a halt and not many viable options available, making a living will become difficult for Afghans in the days to come.

Over the past 20 years, India’s bilateral trade with Afghanistan has grown by leaps and bounds. Bilateral trade in 2019-2020 reached $1.5 billion with an increase in imports and exports.

India imports around 85% of its dry fruits along with most of the piquant spices from war-torn Afghanistan. Afghan exports include fresh fruits, dry fruits such as anjeer, walnuts, almonds, apricot, green and black raisins, aromatic asafoetida and figs.

Exports from India include garments, pharmaceuticals, medical equipment, computers, hardware materials, cement, sugar and synthetic fibre.

With trade routes shutting down and the government and the Taliban yet to arrive at a trade agreement, prices of dry fruits in India have doubled and tripled over the past one week, spelling trouble for traders and consumers alike. (MR, Inputs: Agencies).

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