President SAARC Chambers of Commerce and Industry Iftikhar Ali Malik has stressed the urgent need of unlocking the potential of regional economic cooperation and integration to boost trade among SAARC member countries, especially with Afghanistan at this critical juncture. Talking to a delegation of traders led by Muslim Khan Buneri here on Friday, he said inter-regional trade in South Asia was less than one-third of its potential, which indicates 67 percent of trade was not being fully exploited. Other members of the delegation included Asif Majeed, Mian Zeeshan Elahi, Mian Affan Elahi of Marvel Cables. He said the role of Afghanistan as a connector and as a land bridge between Central Asia, the Middle East and South Asia needs to be reviewed in the prevailing scenario to primarily focus on the promotion of trade and investment. He said even today, Afghanistan is seen as a viable doorway to South Asian countries for direct access to oil and gas of the republics of Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Uzbekistan.