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Abdul Qadeer Mutfi

Updated: Jan 7, 2023

1.You mentioned in your article that Afghanistan's target value chains mainly include cashmere, gemstones and jewelry, natural stone, carpets, and other raw materials. Is the export pattern of basic raw materials sustainable? Has the country taken measures to upgrade its export structure?

The Government of Afghanistan recognizes international trade as an important driver of growth, for which it has prioritized trade, transit, and regional cooperation as critical elements in its economic development strategy. The committed to trade reforms aimed at unlocking the potential of the country's export sector, which is evident from recent initiatives undertaken by the country such as accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO) and ratification of WTO TFA. However, this changing trade environment requires solid understanding of trade issues, design and implementation of legislative reforms and their enforcement through institutionalized mechanisms. Afghanistan has three international airports at which goods may be exported. In addition, Afghanistan has 12 international border crossing points with its neighboring countries: three with Iran, three with Pakistan, three with Tajikistan, one with Uzbekistan and two with Turkmenistan. The main Border Crossing Points are Torkham (with Pakistan), Hairatan (with Uzbekistan) and Islam Qala (with Iran).

Afghanistan has adopted the WTO Valuation Agreement that primarily bases the Customs transactional value for the exported goods as being the price actually paid or payable for the goods when sold for export to the country of destination, plus, certain adjustments of costs and charges. The declarant is responsible for using reasonable care to value exported merchandise and provide any other information necessary to enable the Customs office to properly assess the duty and determine whether any other applicable legal requirement is met. Any legal or natural person holding business license obtained from Ministry of Industries and Commerce or the Ministry of Mines and Petroleum of Afghanistan are eligible to apply for permit to export minerals.Afghanistan Major export Sectors

1- Fresh fruits and Dry fruits

2- Carpet

3- Industrial Minerals (Talc, Chromite, Marble, etc

4- Gem Stones

5- Vegetables

6- Medical Plants

7- Handcrafts (Women)

8- Saffron

2.Since July, Afghanistan has been affected by a new round of COVID-19. The number of confirmed cases is still rising. What is the impact on Afghanistan's export economy? Will Afghanistan make further cooperation with some vaccine-producing countries like China to alleviate the domestic epidemic?

According to the World Bank Afghanistan’s economy is shaped by fragility and aid dependence. The private sector is extremely narrow, with employment concentrated in low-productivity agriculture (44 percent of the total workforce works in agriculture and 60 percent of households

derive some income from agriculture). In this case the impacts of crises are never gender-neutral, and COVID-19 is no exception. According to the different international organizations for the last 22 years, extreme poverty globally had been declining. Then came COVID-19, and with it, massive job losses, shrinking of economies and loss of livelihoods, not only in Afghanistan in fact world economy is damage and affected.

3.With the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan, will the Taliban and Afghan government forces fall into a new round of conflict? How will the turbulent domestic political environment affect Afghanistan's foreign economic and trade relations with other countries?

The Taliban have captured major border crossings with Iran and Turkmenistan in a sweeping offensive across northern Afghanistan. This will seriously damage the export and import regime of Afghanistan. For exp the Islam Qala crossing is one of the biggest trade gateways into Iran, generating an estimated more then $20m (£14m) in monthly revenue for the government. The Torghundi border town is one of two trade gateways into Turkmenistan. Taliban do not have any trade policy they only focusing on the control of the important places to show their power before going to peace talk. I don’t think so that they will be able to understand the concept of reginal integration.

4.As an Islamic fundamentalist organization, will the Taliban effectively support the implementation of this export economic plan? Whether extreme religionists could establish positive and healthy trade relations with other countries?

No: Since then, while the Taliban have extended their control to cover approximately 85 percent of Afghanistan, their popularity and legitimacy now appear to be in decline. They have failed to establish A State. And they have failed to offer the Afghan people a better life in this case how can they establish positive and healthy trade relations with other countries?

Best regards,

Qadeer Mutfi


Editor Assistant Research Fellow: Xianglin Gu



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