First flight marks new air cargo corridor between Afghanistan and India

Workers load export materials into a Cargo plane in Kabul, Afghanistan. June 19, 2017. REUTERS/Omar Sobhani

Vastavam web: An aircraft packed with 60 tons of Afghan plants with medicinal uses marked the opening of the first air cargo corridor between Afghanistan and India on Monday.The cargo, worth about $5 million dollars, was the first in what officials from the two countries hope will be many flights allowing Afghan and Indian companies to bypass Pakistan.”Our aim is to change Afghanistan to an exporter country,” Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said at a ceremony marking the inaugural flight.”As long as we are not an exporter country, then poverty and instability will not be eliminated.”

“We will continue to assist you in various ways as this corridor expands and grows into a network of cargo flights as per demand of the market,” India’s ambassador to Afghanistan, Manpreet Vohra, told Ghani.”There are bound to be some teething problems in any major initiatives such as this but my embassy and my government is committed to working together with your team to resolve all issues that may pop up from time to time.”Border crossings are often closed as Afghan and Pakistani forces clash over the disputed border, and Afghan farmers have complained of fruit and other produce rotting without other options for shipping.