By: The Kabul Times
KABUL: The US Special Inspector General for Afghanistan, in a report released on Oct. 30, says the United States has provided up to $132 billion for reconstruction and related activities in Afghanistan since 2002 but it mentions that Afghanistan’s national revenue has been low. The report specified the allocations: $82.55 billion for security (including $4.57 billion for counter-narcotics initiatives), $34.46 billion for governance and development (including $4.37 billion for counter-narcotics initiatives), $3.85 billion for humanitarian aid and $11.70 billion for civilian operations.
The amount provided to the nine largest active US funds accounts for more than 86.1% (nearly $114.17 billion) of total reconstruction assistance in Afghanistan since 2002. Of this amount, over 92.9% (nearly $106.11 billion) has been promised, and nearly 89.2% (nearly $101.80 billion) has been disbursed.
An estimated $5.8 billion of this amount of appropriated funds has expired and will therefore not be disbursed.
The report says that Afghanistan’s gross domestic product contracted by 0.2% in 2018, including opium-poppy cultivation, according to the country’s statistical authority. According to the report, Afghan government revenues grew by just 3.2% over the first eight months of the fiscal year 1398 (December 22, 2018–December 21, 2019), year-on-year.
Meanwhile, the report says that an additional $5.2 billion in economic and social development funds may be required to sustain a potential Afghan political settlement, the World Bank said in a draft plan.
But the Ministry of Finance (MoF) says government has collected about 160 billion Afghanis in revenue over the past 11 months of the current solar year, showing more than 10 percent increase over the same period last year.
In a statement, the Ministry of Finance said the revenue included 66 billion afghanis in customs duty and 94 billion afghanis from other sources.
The MoF recalled it had collected 150 billion Afghanis during the same period last year. An amount of 318 billion Afghanis was spent from national budgets from the beginning of the year which accounted 17.7 percent national budget.
According to the statement, development spending since the beginning of the current fiscal year is 5 billion afghanis, indicating a rise of 4.9 billion Afghanis.
It added since the beginning of the fiscal year, 92 billion Afghanis had been spent in development budget — a 9.5 billion increase compared to last year.
The ministry said 226 billion afghanis had been spent from the general budget.