After the facility of normal banking transaction, Pakistan has decided that payments against exports to Afghanistan would no longer be in Pak Rupees and the normal trading regime will apply with effect from March 17, 2014 . The decision came here in a high-level meeting chaired by Federal Minister for Finance Senator Ishaq Dar , which was held to review Pakistanís trade with Afghanistan at the finance ministry this morning. The meeting was attended by Secretary Finance Dr Waqar Masood , Secretary Commerce, Qasim Muhammad Niaz , FBR Chairman Tariq Bajwa , Advisor to Finance Rana Asad Amin , State Bank of Pakistan Governor Yaseen Anwar and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chamber of Commerce President Zahid Ullah Shinwari . The meeting was informed that Pakistanís export to Afghanistan during 2012-13 amounted to US 2.3 billion. This also included trade undertaken in Pak Rupee estimated at 50 percent of the total exports. After consultations and due recommendations by the concerned ministries, the finance minister decided that payments against exports to Afghanistan would no longer be in Pak Rupees and the normal trading regime would apply with effect from March 17, 2014 . A two-month period was however being given to allow exporters serving any existing contracts, he added. It will be pertinent to add that the decision has been taken in view of the fact that normal banking channels are now available for transactions between the two countries. The KCCI president drew the attention of the finance minister to the difficulties being faced by exporters to utilise the route of Ghulam Khan as it was restricted for exports of Cement only. He suggested that other items should also be allowed to be exported. The FBR chairman and the ministry of commerce supported the contention of the KCCI president. The finance minister, therefore, decided to allow export of all other items also from Ghulam khan which would help develop business in the backward areas of KPK and also stimulate growth of exports to Afghanistan . These decisions would be implemented by the concerned ministries who shall issue necessary amendments and streamline procedures. The decision is likely to earn foreign exchange of US $ 1 billion , increase exports to Afghanistan , benefit business community as well as the people of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and reflect actual export figures of the country. In a separate meeting held with the representatives of the State Bank of Pakistan , the minister reviewed the limit of currency notes allowed to the Pakistanis travelling abroad. The SBP governor raised the issue that the present limit of US$ 10,000 for each person per trip was being misused and to check this tendency it was decided that the present limit of US $ 10,000 per trip per passenger be reduced to US $ 5,000 . Each child up to 12 years would be entitled to 50 percent allowance while an infant would be permitted an allowance of 25 percent. The finance minister emphasized that the limit of US $ 5,000 or equivalent per person per trip was applicable to passengers who were carrying currency notes.
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