By: Shukria Kohistani
Turkmenistan wants to invest on Afghanistan marble. Turkmen foreign affairs minister accompanied by a high-ranking delegation of the country has visited Herat, where he had informed of investment of the province’s marble. Afghanistan marble is known as top in international markets.
A number of Afghanistan marble firms by welcoming Turkmenistan’s investment on the country’s marble told The Kabul Times correspondent that Turkmenistan was the first country which would like to investon this precious stone, asking for continued cooperation between Afghanistan and Turkmenistan in exporting marble to the neighboring country.
“Currently, nearly 35 types of marbles worth billions in dollars with 45 different colors are found in 60 marble mines across the country,” said Farid, owner of a marble firm.
He said that Afghanistan marble was considered as one of half-precious stone used for decoration of buildings and things, adding that the biggest marble mines were in Kabul, Ghazni, Logar, Maidan Wardak, Nangarhar, Helmand, Badakhshan, Bamyan, Herat, Kandahar, Faryab, Paktia, Parwan, Panjshir and Samangan. He further said that currently marble was extracted from 16 mines of the country.
The white marble of Nangahar’s Khogyani, the white marble of Herat’s Chesht-e-Sharif, the cream marble of Samangan, the black marble of Kabul, the steely marble of Maidan Wardak, the green marble of Kabul’s Tarakhil and Karizmir and red marble of Kandahar are considered as top marbles in the country.
Afghanistan Minister of Foreign Affairs Mohammad Haneef Atmar and Foreign Minister of Turkmenistan Rashid Meredov, discussed investment in Afghanistan’s marble exports to Turkmenistan.
The Afghan delegation provided comprehensive information to their Turkmen counterparts on the $200 billion worth of various resources and rare stones in Afghanistan, and called the export of the stones significant in strengthening and expansion of trade between Kabul and Ashgabat, considering the regional countries, particularly Turkmenistan’s demand for marble.
Highlighting the construction projects for building new cities in Turkmenistan, the Turkmen delegation discussed their requirement for marble and expressed Turkmenistan’s full readiness to procure marble from Afghanistan.
The two sides emphasized the importance of marble supply and demand in the two countries’ trade expansion and agreed to sign an agreement on Afghanistan’s marble export to Turkmenistan.
It is worth mentioning that so far 60 marble mines have been discovered in various provinces of the country and Herat marble is considered as one of the most sought after stones in the world and is sold and exported to over 60 countries.
Besides, at the moment, dozens of marble stone processing factories are operating in Herat.