The Kabul Times.
Economic

ADB committed to support Afghanistan build infrastructures

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Based on new economic report released by Asian Development Bank (ADB), construction and development of infrastructures have key role in economic development of Afghanistan. ADB says implementation of infrastructural projects and building infrastructures in Afghanistan will help the country change to a center for trade and transit and bridge between central and south Asian countries.
Delivering a report regarding Afghanistan economic growth, the ADB country director for Afghanistan Samuel Tumiwa said that ADB would remain committed to support the country build the needed infrastructure for poverty reduction.
ADB said that focusing on infrastructure development will help bring about long-term growth in Afghanistan and address persistent issues affecting the country’s economic prospects, apart from security, including poor connectivity, poor access to limited energy supply, and low agriculture productivity.
“Better infrastructure can strengthen economic growth, enlist improved mobility to energize commerce and agriculture, and boost government revenues available for development spending,” said ADB Country Director for Afghanistan Mr. Samuel Tumiwa. “ADB is proud to be Afghanistan’s leading development partner in infrastructure development and regional cooperation, and remains committed to support the country build the needed infrastructure for poverty reduction.”
Some of the measures to enhance infrastructure development, according to the report, include a coordinated government approach to implement ongoing construction projects and upgrade its capacity in the design, implementation, and monitoring of investment projects. The government needs to address skills shortages and stimulate private sector investment in infrastructure development, it said. According to ADB, insecurities, weak connectivity, lack of sufficient access to energy sources and low growth in agriculture are a range of issues that are affecting the country’s economic growth.
The ADB country director for Afghanistan says despite of all the challenges, the bank has provided $4.5 billion to Afghanistan where 20 percent of the aid has been spent so far.
Meanwhile, the ADB report says that Afghanistan’s economic growth rate will increase to 2.5 percent in 2019, while the growth rate will increase to 3 percent in 2020. In 2018, the country’s economic growth rate was 2.2 percent. Meanwhile, a spokesperson to ministry of finance Shamroz Khan Masjidi said that Afghanistan government wasa committed to implementation of quality development projects across the country. “Afghanistan government is fully committed to effectively implement development projects in the country and key ministries are responsible to continually monitor quality of development projects,” the MoF spokesperson said.
Afghan economists, on the other hand, stress that Afghanistan government should have new mechanisms for development of agriculture and supporting the sector in the country as agriculture can play key role in the economic development of the country.
Meanwhile, Afghanistan government has launched awareness programs at a number of the country’s universities for accountability and transparency in work of development projects. The program attended by a large number of university students has been aimed to create the culture of monitoring from infrastructural projects.
Shukria Kohistani

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