Monday, 3 October 2016

Chinese investors in Afghanistan help to stabilize peace

A renowned Afghan economist and Kabul University professor believes that investments by China in Afghanistan can immensely contribute to stabilizing peace, security and reviving economy in the conflict-ridden country. "China's investment in Afghanistan's economy, especially in the production sector to establish factories to boost local products inside Afghanistan can create job opportunities and alleviate poverty in the country," Sayed Masoud told Xinhua in an interview recently. The war-ravaged country, according to the analyst, is a consuming one and importing more goods from foreign countries would further damage the country's impoverished economy. Describing Sino-Afghan relations as deep rooted and historical, the professor noted that the People's Republic of China had invested in several significant projects in the past century in 1970s such as Parwan Irrigation Canal, Bagram Textile factory, etc. He hopes China can invest in similar projects at present and in the future. The senior economist has sought more investment by Chinese companies and Chinese government in the peaceful provinces of Afghanistan such as central region. "Several provinces including Bamyan, Daikundi, Panjshir, Balkh and many more areas are peaceful and environment for investment is conducive, therefore our request from China is to invest in any field including industrial, agriculture and tourism to help this country rebuild its economy," the economist argued. The senior economist has also advocated for investment in diverting illicit drug to pain killing medicines and sought China's support in this field in the poppy growing Afghanistan. Describing railway connection between China and Afghanistan through central Asian States of Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan as a stride for boosting trade and economic relations between the two neighboring countries and the region, the senior economist maintained that Afghans looking towards China for more investment. Afghanistan, according to the economist, owns untapped mineral treasure worth 5 trillion U.S. dollars, and Afghans are looking forward to seeing Chinese investment in the mining field, which is necessary to create job opportunities and poverty alleviation in the cash strapped and foreign aid dependent country. Lauding China for opening Confucius Institute in Kabul University, professor Masoud requested more scholarships to Afghan students for higher study in Chinese universities, saying getting education by Afghans in Chinese universities would further contribute in enhancing people to people contact and eventually strengthening bilateral relations.
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