JAMMU: The state government has conveyed its agreement to the government of India for opening seven additional trade routes across the LoC and International Border in Jammu and Kashmir.
This information was given by the Minister for Industries & Commerce (I&C), Chander Parkash Ganga while replying to the discussion on Demand for Grants of the Industries and Commerce Department in the State Assembly on Wednesday.
He said the new routes proposed for trade include Jammu-Sialkot, Chhamb-Jourian to Mirpur, Gurez-Astoor-Gilgit, Jhangar (Nowshera)-Mirpur and Kotli, Turtuk-Khapulu, Kargil-Skardu and Titwal-Chilhan (across Neelam Valley). He said besides two meeting points namely: Hundurman on Kargil-Skardu route and a suitable point at Turtuk-Khapulu route were proposed by the state government, an official handout read.
Regarding the cross-LoC trade, the minister said that construction of infrastructure at both the Trade Facilitation Centres – Chakkan-Da-Bagh, Poonch and Salamabad, Uri with an estimated cost of Rs 10.41 crore and Rs 10.73 crore, respectively under Phase-II has been initiated.
He said, “The cross LoC trade of goods has been going on for the past nine years and this barter system of trade has recorded an import worth about Rs 3091.14 crore and export worth about Rs 3411.50 crore since inception.”
He said a list of 21 more tradable items for inclusion in the Agreed List of Tradable items for cross-LoC trade has been submitted to government of India for taking up with the government of Pakistan. He said introduction of banking system for LoC trade has also been taken up with the government of India, the handout added.