Cross-LoC trade hits all-time high this week at Rs 29 cr

Srinagar, Jan 21 (PTI) The cross-Line of Control (LoC)trade between Kashmir and Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) thisweek has hit an all time high of nearly Rs 29 crore, as 321trucks crossed the Aman Setu (Peace Bridge) at Kaman Post.

"Goods worth Rs 28.94 crore were exchanged by tradersfrom this side and PoK during the two-day trade this week,"officials said here today.

They said the value of the goods exchanged between thetwo sides this week was the highest since the trade wasstarted on Srinagar-Muzaffarabad route on october 21, 2008.

The previous high was Rs 24 crore recorded in December lastyear.

The officials said 191 trucks -- mostly carrying redchillies, ginger, coconut and pineapple -- were exported toPoK, while 130 trucks carrying goods likes oranges, carpetsand dry fruits were imported on Tuesday and Wednesday.

They said the high volume of trade, which saw 2,247tonnes of goods exchanged, was apparently due to the two-weekbreak caused by the traders'' boycott over the lack of adequatefacilities at Salamabad Trade Facilitation Centre.

The trade resumed on Tuesday after the districtadministration Baramulla assured traders that the work onstorage facilities at Salamabad, 114 km from here, would becompleted within one month.

The officials said there will be no trade onSrinagar-Muzaffarabad road next week, as the trade officialsfrom Chakoti in PoK have cited some local problems forsuspension.

Meanwhile, the number of passengers on theKaravan-e-Aman weekly bus service between the divided partsof Kashmir continued to fall as no fresh visitors arrived onboth sides yesterday.

While five PoK residents returned home after spendingtime with their relatives in valley, four Indian citizens alsoreturned home, the officials said.

They said the drop in number of passengers was probablydue to the intense cold wave conditions in the valley.

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