The Ministry of Railway (MoR) and Sarhad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI) have made an agreement to make Azakhel Dry Port fully operational. It will facilitate the Pak-Afghan trade and trade with Central Asian Republics (CARs). The Azakhel Dry Port was inaugurated in January 2020 but could not be fully operationalized due to lack of basic facilities like rail cargo carriers and customs clearance services. The exporters of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa were facing problems owing to the unavailability of bonded carriers’ facility in Peshawar to carry these exported goods to Karachi port for onward destinations.
The Azakhel dry port was planned in 2006 and finalized by the current government. This modern dry port was completed with an estimated cost of Rs 507 million. It is spread over 28 acres of land at about 20 kilometres distance from Peshawar on main GT Road in Nowshera district’s town Azakhel. The goods and shipments transported from Karachi port can be loaded here before its onward transportation to Peshawar and other districts of KP and Afghanistan through enhanced roads and rails services.
This modern dry port would immensely help in transportation of goods and shipments to every nook and corner of the country. It will generate employment opportunities for thousands of workforces, youth, and laborers besides alleviating poverty and accelerating the pace of economic development in the province.
The Pakistan Railways would earn enormous amounts of revenue if the Azakhel dry port is fully operationalized. The trade through the railways would give a long life to the roads and motorways. This dry port is linked with the 1st phase of CPEC which can make Peshawar valley a trade hub.