2020-01-15 › Afghanistan's exports via Lapis Lazuli route face hurdle as countries deny visas
Afghanistan's exports via new international trade route, known as Lapis Lazuli, is facing hurdle as countries along the route refuse to issue visas to transporters.
The route, which was inaugurated by President Ashraf Ghani over a year ago, runs from Afghanistan to Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan and Georgia before crossing the Black Sea to Turkey and eventually Europe.
Khanjan Alokozay, a member of board of directors of Afghanistan’s Chamber of Commerce and Investment, said that the nations along the route are denying visas to transporters.
Meanwhile, Mirwais Nab, deputy foreign minister for economic cooperation, said that the issue would be resolved soon in an upcoming meeting with countries along Lapis Lazuli route in Turkmenistan.
Afghanistan has exported 500 tons of domestic products to Azerbaijan, Turkey and European markets since the inauguration of the route in late 2018, according to data from Afghan Ministry of Industry and Commerce.
The ministry’s spokesman, Sameer Rasa, said that the volume of exports via the route could increase this year.