Sunday, 10 December 2017

Afghanistan - Asian Development Bank has approved USD 150,000,000 for the construction of the remaining parts of the Country’s ring road

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved 150 million USD for the construction of the remaining parts of the country’s ring road. Bank officials said they continue their efforts to complete the ring road in Faryab and Badghis provinces, in the north of Afghanistan. 
“We are working right now to finish the ring road across Afghanistan which is very important. In the north-west corner of Afghanistan, the ring road has not been completed,” the ADB country director in Afghanistan Thomas Panella said. According to the Asian Development Bank, with the help of the bank's new budget,151 kilometers of the final ring road from the Qaisar area to the Dar-e-Boom area in Badghis will be constructed by using this fund. The budget for the remaining part of the ring road was approved last week, the ADB official confirmed. Officials from Ministry of Commerce and Industries said considering the opening of the international transport corridor to Afghanistan, the completion of the transport infrastructure is crucial for the country. The officials said working groups of the Lapis Lazuli Corridor will soon start working to expand the business route to the world. “It is possible and we can travel to the four connecting countries with the vehicles we have. We would also have this capacity in Torghundi and Aqina ports to provide facilities for unloading and loading of foreign vehicles transporting goods to these ports,” said Sayed Yahya Akhlaqi, head of the transit and commercial department of the ministry. Analysts said government needs to provide the ground and ensure the safety of major projects in the country, particularly in northern parts of Afghanistan. “We need to strengthen domestic capacities, especially security in north of Afghanistan. We need to encourage Pakistanis and Tajiks to build their own business in the conjunction with our capacities,” said Shabir Bashiri, an economic affairs analyst.
Afghanistan's ring road is part of the 3,360 kilometers of main highway project, connecting 16 provinces and major cities such as Kabul, Mazar, Herat, Kandahar, Ghazni and Jalalabad.
>>> READ ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Follow me on Twitter @ivotoniut

A successful female CEO to improve Afghanistan's Pharmaceutical Industry

Follow Aria Medica on Twitter @AriaMedica
On December 4th 2017, Aria Medica’s Chief Executive Officer, Hosna Jalil, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Honorable Professor Mohammad Nasim Sediqi, Dean of Faculty of Pharmacy, Kabul University.
The MoU is expected to enable the two parties to collaborate more closely on activities and issues of common interest, and enable Aria Medica and Pharmaceutical Faculty to deepen their cooperation, and to improve opportunities as well as sharing expertise. Both organizations will work together on the promotion and organization of workshops, conferences and training seminars, and the dissemination of activities through publications, workshops and conferences. It is anticipated that cooperation will focus on several areas including Monitoring and Evaluation support, provide assistance in conducting deep assessment in Importation, Manufacturing, Distribution and Quality Control of medicine based on modern medicine, scientific and technical methods, as well as Procurement and supply of medical practice, pharmacy care, drug information systems and legislation. Under this MoU, Aria Medica will also provide Faculty’s interns with comprehensive training experiences that contribute to their overall development and help build their confidence and independence.
Through this MoU, Aria Medica will accommodate and build capacity of around 30-40 trainees each year. This unique opportunity helps interns gain valuable experience, training, continued education and potential career advancement at one of the country’s most innovative and motivating local and international companies operating across the country.
  • About Aria Medica
Aria Medica is an Afghan registered pharmaceutical company established in 2016 by an Afghan investor with a team of healthcare professionals, registered with Ministry of Commerce and Ministry of Public Health’s National Medicine and Health Products Regulatory Authority (NMHRA), Aria Medica is a subsidiary of Investone Group. The company is committed to serve the Afghan Nation with a focus on the manufacture and sale of high quality pharmaceutical products across the country. Aria Medica offers branded medicines from well known international manufacturing companies across the world with the vision to make remarkable contribution in the improvement of health quality in Afghanistan by investing in the pharmaceutical and health sectors of Afghanistan. The investment in the pharmaceutical sector is directed towards: (1) pharmaceutical local production facilities, (2) importation and distribution of medical equipment and pharmaceuticals including medical supplies and medicated cosmetics. The investment in the health sector will be directed towards (3) hospitals.
>>> SOURCE

Saturday, 9 December 2017

خبرهای ده شب تلویزیون یک

Германия выделила около USD 94,000,000 на программы поддержки ИРА

Правительство Афганистана и немецкий государственный банк KfW подписали соглашение, в соответствии с которым афганская сторона получит от Германии 6,44 миллиарда афгани (около 94,000,000 долларов США).

Средства должны будут поступить в Трастовый фонд реконструкции Афганистана (ARTF).
Финансовая помощь пойдёт на усовершенствование системы управления, проектов развития сельского хозяйства и инфраструктуры, а также социальные программы.

Voto dei cittadini italiani residenti in Afghanistan

  • Nel corso del 2018 si svolgeranno le elezioni per il rinnovo del Parlamento italiano, che vedranno coinvolti anche i cittadini italiani residenti all’estero, chiamati ad eleggere i propri rappresentanti alla Camera dei Deputati e al Senato della Repubblica, votando per i candidati che si presentano nella Circoscrizione estero.
Si ricorda che il voto è un diritto tutelato dalla Costituzione Italiana e che, in base alla Legge 27 dicembre 2001, n.459, i cittadini italiani residenti all’estero, iscritti nelle liste elettorali della circoscrizione estero, possono votare per posta. A tal fine, si raccomanda quindi di controllare e regolarizzare la propria situazione anagrafica e di indirizzo presso il proprio consolato.
E’ possibile in alternativa scegliere di votare in Italia presso il proprio Comune, comunicando per iscritto la propria scelta (opzione) al Consolato entro i termini di legge. Gli elettori che scelgono di votare in Italia in occasione delle prossime elezioni politiche, ricevono dai rispettivi Comuni italiani la cartolina-avviso per votare - presso i seggi elettorali in Italia - per i candidati nelle circoscrizioni nazionali e non per quelli della Circoscrizione Estero.
La scelta (opzione) di votare in Italia vale solo per una consultazione elettorale.
Chi desidera votare in Italia deve darne comunicazione scritta al proprio Consolato entro il 31 dicembre dell’anno precedente a quello previsto per la scadenza naturale della legislatura (marzo 2018), quindi entro il 31 dicembre 2017.
In caso intervenga invece uno scioglimento anticipato delle Camere, l’opzione può essere inviata o consegnata a mano entro il 10° giorno successivo alla indizione delle votazioni.
In ogni caso l’opzione deve pervenire all’ufficio consolare non oltre i dieci giorni successivi a quello dell’indizione delle votazioni. Tale comunicazione può essere scritta su carta semplice e - per essere valida - deve contenere nome, cognome, data, luogo di nascita, luogo di residenza e firma dell’elettore. Per tale comunicazione si può anche utilizzare l’apposito modulo disponibile presso il Consolato, i Patronati, le associazioni, il Comites oppure scaricabile dal sito web del Ministero degli Esteri (www.esteri.it) o da quello del proprio Ufficio consolare.
Se la dichiarazione non è consegnata personalmente, dovrà essere accompagnata da copia di un documento di identità del dichiarante.
Come prescritto dalla normativa vigente, sarà cura degli elettori verificare che la comunicazione di opzione spedita per posta sia stata ricevuta in tempo utile dal proprio Ufficio consolare.
La scelta di votare in Italia può essere successivamente revocata con una comunicazione scritta da inviare o consegnare all’Ufficio consolare con le stesse modalità ed entro gli stessi termini previsti per l’esercizio dell’opzione.
Se si sceglie di rientrare in Italia per votare, la Legge non prevede alcun tipo di rimborso per le spese di viaggio sostenute, ma solo agevolazioni tariffarie all’interno del territorio italiano. Solo gli elettori residenti in Paesi dove non vi sono le condizioni per votare per corrispondenza (Legge 459/2001, art. 20, comma 1 bis) hanno diritto al rimborso del 75 per cento del costo del biglietto di viaggio, in classe economica, ma non e' il caso dell'Afghanistan.
L’ufficio consolare è a disposizione per ogni ulteriore chiarimento.
>>> PER SAPERNE DI PIU' VAI SUL SITO DELL'AMBASCIATA D'ITALIA IN AFGHANISTAN

Will the Lapis Lazuli railway corridor finally end Afghanistan's isolation?

On November 15 during the 7th Regional Economic Cooperation Conference on Afghanistan (RECCA-VII) in Ashgabat Turkey, Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan and Georgia signed an agreement providing for a major international trade and transport corridor stretching from Turkey to Afghanistan via the post-Soviet Central Asian republics, named the “Lapis Lazuli Corridor.” While many practical problems remain, the development and operation of such a railway corridor has enormous implications for the countries along its route, particularly Afghanistan.

http://www.heartofasia.af/index.php/afghanistan/item/5461-will-the-lapis-lazuli-railway-corridor-finally-end-afghanistan-s-isolation
by  John C. K. Daly
BACKGROUND: The Lapis Lazuli Corridor will begin in Afghanistan’s northern Faryab province and Turqundi in the country’s western Herat province, continuing westwards to Turkmenistan’s Caspian Turkmenbashi port, from where cargo will be ferried across the Caspian to Azerbaijan’s capital Baku to Tbilisi and Georgia’s Black Sea ports of Batumi and Poti. It will connect with Kars in eastern Turkey before linking to Istanbul and further into Europe.
Afghanistan’s mountainous terrain, ethnic and tribal divisions, combined with an ongoing insurgency, a weak central government and an underdeveloped economy have up to now all stymied the development of an indigenous transport infrastructure, much less one capable of developing exports. Recent regional developments in improving relations with its northern post-Soviet neighbors, combined with the outreach to Pakistan may soon see the development of a railway network focused on Afghanistan. This will benefit both the country and its neighbors, if the recent agreement signed in Ashgabat can be implemented.
The agreement was finalized after three years of technical consultations, with the first technical meeting being held on November 15, 2014, at the Turkmen Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Ashgabat. The agreement was signed by Afghanistan’s Foreign Minister Salahuddin Rabbani, Deputy Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers and Minister for Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan Rashid Meredov, First Deputy of the Azerbaijan Railways Company Alirza Suleymanov, Foreign Minister of Georgia Mikheil Janelidze and Turkey’s Deputy Foreign Minister Ahmet Yildiz. Afghan Foreign Minister Rabbani said that the signing of the agreement marked a milestone in Afghanistan’s efforts in achieving greater connectivity through improvement and building of infrastructure for increased trade across Eurasia. The “Lapis Lazuli” moniker is derived from the historic export route along which Afghanistan’s lapis lazuli and other semiprecious stones were transported to the Caucasus, Russia, the Balkans, Europe and North Africa over two millennia ago.
Two years after the initial meeting, on November 28, 2016, a 53-mile railway line running from Atamyrat in Turkmenistan to its Ymamnazar border crossing point and 2 miles onward to Afghanistan’s border facilities at Akina was officially opened by Turkmenistan’s President Gurbanguly Berdimuhammedov who along with Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani ceremonially tightened a golden bolt. As Afghanistan lacked the internal resources for railway construction, Turkmenistan agreed to undertake responsibility for surveying, designing and constructing the entire route, with the Afghan segment donated gratis to the country.
The 1,520 mm gauge line, used in the former Soviet Union (CIS states, the Baltic States and Georgia), Mongolia and Finland forms the Afghan end of the Lapis Lazuli Corridor which is being developed to improve freight links from Central Asia across the Caspian Sea to the Caucasus, Turkey and Europe. The first freight train on the new line consisted of 46 wagons laden with flour, grain, cement, urea and sulfur.
IMPLICATIONS: Significantly, the New Lapis Lazuli corridor will connect with Turkey’s middle corridor project (East-West Trans-Caspian Trade and Transport Corridor) and will complement other existing regional transport corridors such as the Five Nations Railway Corridor. The Lapis Lazuli corridor will be synchronized with other trade routes that transit Eurasia, including the massive North–South Transport Corridor, which extends from India to Finland, also under development.
Afghanistan strongly supports the initiative. On November 14, the day before the signing ceremony in Ashgabat, the Director General for Economic Cooperation of Afghanistan’s MFA, Hassan Soroosh said, “The Lapis Lazuli Corridor agreement is one of the most important agreements in the region. Trade expansion in the region, regional connectivity, resolving transit and trade problems will be the long-term impact of this corridor.” Afghanistan’s Chamber of Commerce and Industries touts the Lapis Lazuli Corridor as the “shortest, cheapest and safest route for Afghanistan’s transit trade” and projects that 80 percent of Afghan exports to Europe will be carried by the new railway.
Not surprisingly, a significant beneficiary of Afghanistan’s improved transportation network will be China, which has assiduously been promoting an improved transport infrastructure across Eurasia under its “One Belt, One Road” (OBOR) initiative, unveiled in 2013. OBOR as currently envisaged involves 70 countries, 4.4 billion people and up to 40 percent of the global GDP, with anticipated eventual cumulative investment costs of US$ 4-8 trillion. According to data from the Afghan Central Statistic Organization, bilateral trade between China and Afghanistan has surged from US$ 432 million in 2008-09 to US$ 1.09 billion in 2016-17, an increase of 153 percent.
The Lapis Lazuli Corridor railway project continues to attract regional interest. On November 25 Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif announced his country’s decision to join the Ashgabat Agreement and the Lapis Lazuli Corridor during his attendance at a two-day Global Sustainable Transport Conference in the Turkmen capital. Pakistan’s interest is essential in making the Lapis Lazuli railway corridor multimodal, as it is already engaged in implementing the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), a collection of transportation infrastructure projects that are currently under construction throughout Pakistan. The CPEC’s original cost was estimated at US$ 46 billion, but the net cost of the infrastructure conglomeration is now estimated at US$ 62 billion. While the Lapis Lazuli Corridor is intended to provide an east-west link between Afghanistan and Europe, its connection to the CPEC will give Afghanistan the added bonus of its shortest transport corridor to the open ocean, via Pakistan’s Gwadar port on the Arabian Sea.
A significant barometer of the Lapis Lazuli Corridor’s feasibility will be if it can attract significant funding from international financial institutions, including the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank (WB), and the Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) to name but a few, for the corridor’s estimated US$ 2 billion cost.
Bolstering the feasibility of the Lapis Lazuli Corridor is the fact that it could develop a “southern component.” On October 30 the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars-BTK (BTK) railway, a key component in the modern Silk Road connecting East and West, officially opened at the Baku International Sea Port, allowing post-Soviet Central Asian states to export their goods westwards via trans-Caspian ferry traffic from Ashgabat to Baku, connecting with the BTK via Azerbaijan’s capital. The three governments involved have great expectations of the new railway; the BTK, constructed on the basis of a Georgian-Azerbaijani-Turkish intergovernmental agreement, is envisaged within the next several years to reach a capacity of 17 million tons of cargo annually.
CONCLUSIONS: While the Lapis Lazuli Corridor is a visionary proposal for ending the geographical isolation of Afghanistan and many post-Soviet nations, significant problems remain, ranging from financing to Afghanistan’s ongoing insurrectionist turmoil.
For Afghanistan, connecting the Lapis Lazuli Corridor with both OBOR and CPEC would be a win-win solution, as it would have simultaneously both overland access to European markets and maritime access to the world. Clouding this vision however, are the ongoing tensions between Afghanistan’s neighbors, in particular Pakistan and India. India has so far boycotted the OBOR due to sovereignty concerns over the US$ 62 billion CPEC passing through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, a region India claims its own.
Technical issues also remain to be resolved. Turkey, Iran, China and Europe use 1,435 mm “standard gauge,” while railways in India and Pakistan use Indian 1,676 mm “broad gauge,” unlike the 1,520 mm gauge standard used in the former USSR. In earlier trans-Eurasian Chinese trains dispatched to Europe, these problems have been resolved. The Afghan government remains optimistic that above and beyond such technical bottlenecks, the regional political climate is altering to such an extent that, should sufficient financing be found, it can finally join the global community of nations operating railways, nearly two centuries after the first trains ran in Britain.
http://www.heartofasia.af/index.php/afghanistan/item/5461-will-the-lapis-lazuli-railway-corridor-finally-end-afghanistan-s-isolation
>>> READ ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Written by John C. K. Daly @ HeartOfAsia.af

Afghan Parliament asked the Kabul Government to suspend all its relations with the US following President Donald Trump’s decision on Jerusalem

The Afghan lawmakers said Trump’s decision on Jerusalem is a move against peace.
“In reaction to this anti-Islamic and anti-humanity decree, the diplomatic and trade ties should be suspended until the decision is canceled,” MP Abdul Qayyum Sajjadi said.
“The Islamic nations’ presidents and officials are slaves and you (MPs) should take a stance,” MP Abdul Sattar Khawasi said.
The MPs said recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel is against democratic values and that asked the government to stop all its ties with the US.
“This decision highlights the crisis at international level and it is an act of aggression,” said Abdul Rauf Ibrahimi, speaker of the Wolesi Jirga, the Lower House of Parliament.
“I ask (Trump) to withdraw his signature and to never underestimate Muslims,” MP Lailuma Hakimi said.
According to the MPs, the inability to make decisions and the lack of solidarity and cooperation between the Muslim nations, are the reasons that Trump was encouraged to make such decision.
“If you think the powerful (countries) will be stopped by shouting, it will never happen,” MP Abdul Rauf Anami said.
“America is a hypocrite, America is a bully, America is the big devil,” MP Mohammad Sarwar Osmani Farahi said.
Trump on Thursday night announced that he officially recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. His decision was denounced by many of countries.
>>> SOURCE http://www.tolonews.com/afghanistan/afghan-govt-asked%C2%A0-suspend-relations-us

TODAY, 9 DECEMBER, IS THE INTERNATIONAL ANTI-CORRUPTION DAY

If you haven't already signed the 
Declaration against Corruption you can do so


THANK YOU for taking a stand against #corruption!

Thursday, 7 December 2017

Management, control of entry and exit ports in Afghanistan to be transferred from Ministry of Commerce and Industries to Ministry of Finance

Management and control of all entry and exit ports in the country will be transferred from the Ministry of Commerce and Industries to the Ministry of Finance within the next two months, the Afghan Ministry of Finance has announced. Currently, Afghanistan has fifteen small and large ports. Officials at the Ministry of Finance said with the transfer of responsibility for the ports to the ministry of Finance, there will be major reforms at these ports and government revenues are expected to increase as a result. Officials added that the Aqina and Nimroz ports will be constructed during the coming year to meet the needs of domestic and foreign merchants. These ports are currently not adequate to meet the needs of the merchants. The capacities of the ports are to be increased. “The process of transfer from the ministry commerce to the Ministry of Finance is ongoing and may take two months to complete. We have made assessments and found that in some places ports parts are not efficient. We need to increase their capabilities and provide them with the necessary equipment,” said deputy of customs in the Ministry of Finance, Najibullah Wardak. Meanwhile, Afghanistan Chamber of Commerce and Industries (ACCI) said businessmen are facing many challenges at Afghanistan ports. These include commodity reviews, the complexity of administrative processes and overheads. By transferring these ports to the Ministry of Finance, there is a serious need to solve the problems of businessmen. “The lack of warehouses at ports is another serious problem. These should be equipped with modern equipment to keep our goods and property secured. Another very serious problem is that, in the unloading of materials, it, unfortunately, takes ten to fifteen days,” said spokesman for ACCI. The ports of Aqina, Hairatan, Aai Khanum, Sher Khan, Torghundi, Islam Qala, Abu Nasr Farahi, Nimroz, Spin Boldak, Ghulam Khan and Turkham are Afghanistan ports. According to the Ministry of Finance, Aqina and Nimroz ports will be constructed to world standards in order to meet the needs of domestic and foreign merchants.
>>> READ ORIGINAL ARTICLE