NEW DELHI: Sending a strong message to Pakistani, New Delhi on Friday announced that the first cargo flight in the Afghanistan-India air corridor will get operationalised over the next couple of days, while beflying over Pakistan airspace. It is noted that Pakistani has been resisting India-Afghanistan trade land route, so, to avoid it, the India- Afghanistan air corridor project was initiated by President Ashraf Ghani in 2016.
"During the Afghan President Ashraf Ghani's visit to India last year, we had discussions on establishing an air freight corridor between the two countries and we are happy to announce that first flight is likely to operate in the weekend or early next week. We are working out the details of the first flight," Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Gopal Baglay said.
While maintaining that the cargo service will help increase trade between both the countries, Baglay said," The flight will take Indian products to Afghanistan and will bring Afghan products to India. The first flight will be from Delhi to Kabul and will start this weekend or next week."
But since, it will be crossing over Pakistani airspace, it is believed that both India and Afghanistan will have to disclose the type of cargo being carried by the plane.
The cargo service will aim to improve landlocked Afghanistan's connectivity to key markets abroad and boost the growth prospects of its dry fruits and carpet industries.
Revealing that the first flight will be run by Afghanistan’s Ariana Airlines, Baglay also said there would be a warm reception to the flight which would bring to Afghan products such as dry fruits to Delhi.
He also said that the frequency of the flights under the project would be determined depending on commercial viability as it was a business venture which is supported greatly by the two governments.