According to the official Facebook page of the Ministry of Industry and Infrastructure Development of Kazakhstan (MIID), the main reason for huge queues of cars at the border with China is the closing of three checkpoints at once.
As the ministry noted, Chinese authorities of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region (XUAR) tightened quarantine restrictions.Therefore, the Bakhty, Kolzhat and Maykapchagai border checkpoints on the Kazakhstani side were temporarily closed. As a result, a huge number of trucks filled the space near the still-working Nur Zholy checkpoint.
The XUAR government has established its new rules for the entry of trucks from the Kazakhstan territory during the tightened quarantine. According to those rules, when crossing the Chinese border, they leave the trailer for loading. While the loading is taking place, the trucks should leave China and wait in Kazakhstan. After the loading is completed, special Chinese vehicles transport the loaded trailer to the territory of Kazakhstan.
These rules apply only to vehicles in which the trailer is separated from the tractor truck and does not cover semi-trailers, refrigerators, and trawls. As MIID explained, the new rules seriously hurdle the process of goods transportation and lead to severe traffic jams at the Nur Zholy checkpoint.
To avoid the situation from getting even worse. Kazakhstani authorities have asked carriers to think twice when they plan to ship goods to or from China. This regime will remain in effect until the question of resuming the operation of all closed checkpoints is resolved.
Earlier, China has limited border crossing with Kazakhstan due to another outbreak of coronavirus. As a result, a huge number of trucks have begun to accumulate at the border.