New Delhi, Nov 15 : The Afghan pavilion at the 28th 'India International Trade Fair (IITF) -2008' in New Delhi, with a variety of traditional carpets, spices, garden products and handicrafts on sale, has become a major attraction for the visitors.
The 28th IITF -2008', one of Asia's largest trade expositions organized by India Trade Promotion Organization (ITPO) kick started on Friday.
At least 30 leading businessmen are participating in the fair with an aim to explore the market in India.
In 2007, sales at the Afghan pavilion were worth 3.5 million dollar and in addition could garner contracts of eight million dollar for the business of war-torn nation.
The fair has, for over two decades, provided a single venue outlet for showcasing the potential and achievements of not only all the Indian states but for various other countries as well.
Sayed Makhdoom Raheen, Ambassador of Afghanistan to India, who paid a visit to the pavilion, appreciated India for its trade and cooperation with his nation.
"You know, our business with India is in different fields, in all financial and constructional fields India is one of our best partners," said he.
In all 7000 companies from India and 38 other nations are participating.
Habiba Yousufi, a female Afghan trader, has for the first time, exhibited her products for a new and superior market.
A builder and an engineer by profession, she is the director of the 'Afghan Women Unace Rug' and is helping over 200 Afghan women by marketing their produce.
Inspired by the growth of Indian women, Yousufi wants her fellow countrywomen to be self-reliant and progressive.
"We are now competent to defend ourselves. They (the Taliban) don't want us to grow, but we are dedicated to grow up," said she.
Having lived with fear and hostility for three decades, Afghan traders are now hopeful about trade expansion.
"The violence in Afghanistan, we have some problem. In Afghanistan we have been fighting for 30 years and we have no knowledge. And some people, and some, I am not saying who, but some neighbor(ing) countries, they have a hand there. And they are looking for their profits in Afghanistan and divide you know...some extremists... But inshallah we hope that it will finish inshallah," added Sharafudin Katawazy, another exhibitor.
The fair provides a platform for trade promotion and facilitates interaction close to 7,500 national and international business persons and organisations.
Besides business and industry, traditional crafts have attracted attention through the Fair.
This year's Trade Fair is being held at a time when the world is going through an unprecedented, 'once-in-a-generation', crisis attributed by many experts to the combined result of globalization, credit expansion and deregulation, resulting in the creation of a shadow banking system.