COVID-19: Pakistan tightens border restrictions with Iran, bilateral trade to continue
IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency
Islamabad, May 2, IRNA -- The government of Pakistan has imposed 15-day travel restrictions to control the spread of coronavirus and its mutated variants on its border with the Islamic Republic of Iran, however trade between the two countries would continue without any interruption.
According to an official notification, the National Command and Operations Centre (NCOC) on Sunday reviewed the existing land border management policy with Afghanistan and Iran in a bid to curb the spread of COVID-19 variants.
The revised policy will only be applicable to inbound pedestrian movement, and it will come into effect from May 5 and would end on May 19.
"With the emergence of various variants and to restrain import of any new mutation to Pakistan, current policy of land border management with Afghanistan and Iran has been reviewed to ensure regulated inbound pedestrian movement and effective management of COVID-19 protocols at Border Terminals (BTs)," the NCOC maintained.
The number of security forces and medical staff on Pakistan's border with Iran will also increase, and only Pakistani nationals will be allowed to cross the border.
The NCOC further maintained that the policy will have no effect on existing cargo/trade movement with Iran.
Border terminals, it added, will remain open for seven days a week.
The Taftan region in Balochistan province in southwestern Pakistan is the first and oldest joint border crossing with Iran, where most of the trade takes place.
The second and third official crossings of Iran and Pakistan were also officially opened in Rimdan (Gabd) and Pishin (Mand) in December last year and April this year, respectively.
The outbreak of the COVID-19 virus has affected the economic and trade activities of all the countries since last year, especially the border trade between the Islamic Republic of Iran and Pakistan, but the two countries have decided too continue joint trade in accordance with health protocols.
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