Islamabad: An apex committee meeting of the Afghanistan Inter-Ministerial Coordination Cell (AICC) noted that trade over the Torkham border has been disrupted due to a dispute over fumigation costs.
According to details, the Ministry of Food Security and Research (MoF&SR) is accused of assisting a blue-eyed company’s monopoly by awarding it a contract for importing methyl bromide, which is used for fumigation, in violation of rules, while others are discouraged from participating in the business.
The matter was brought up during an AICC meeting, which was purportedly led by National Security Adviser Dr Moeed Yusuf. The conference was also attended by Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Advisor on Finance Shaukat Tarin, and other senior civil and military leaders.
According to sources, Adeel Pesticides, a fumigation company, was charging above Rs45,000 per container for fumigation, while the cost should have been between Rs5,000 and Rs10,000.
According to documents available to this scribe, the AICC has asked the MoFS&R to take action against the abovementioned company’s monopoly after taking serious notice of the situation at the Afghan border.
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On Friday, the ministry has been asked to brief the apex committee on the allocation of methyl bromide import rights, as well as the grant of contracts to companies for fumigation and the method for determining fees for the process.