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ED: We need to focus on mines

The National Unity Government has frequently declared that it would exert utmost efforts to improve the lives of people and lead the country toward a better and sustainable economic, but despite passing two and half years since establishing of NUG people not witnessed for any significant economic progress, but even poverty increased in the country.

Inverse to the NUG commitments economic condition has gotten worse and hundreds of thousands of people lost jobs and businesses due to different reasons across the country, even jobless caused to hundreds of thousands of people particularly the educated youth left the country and took illegal refuge to European countries. If the government had properly managed its economic strategy and concentrated on fundamental projects and infrastructure, unemployment would not increase and we did not witnessed unemployment as Afghanistan is a rich country with mines.

The current government could focus on mines to create jobs and lead economy toward progress. But unfortunately, Afghan people did not see extracting of any mines in the past two and a half years even they learned of looting of mines by illegal armed groups and the Taliban fighters in different provinces particularly in insecure areas.

The government not only failed to run a big mine project, but even could not protect the mine resources.

Afghanistan’s Anti-Corruption Network (AACN) recently released a report, revealing that armed insurgents including Taliban and Daesh have gained 46 million dollars through illegal extraction and export of mines only in Khogyani district of eastern Nangarhar province in 2016.

The report also said that in 2015, the NUG vowed to ban illegal extraction of mines, but still illegally and unskillfully mines are extracted in different parts of Afghanistan by mafia and illegal armed groups including Taliban and Daesh (Islamic State), thus the government is required to adopt clear policies for protecting and extracting of mines.

Relying on foreign donation would put negative impacts over big policies of the outcry. Therefore, the government of Afghanistan should take steps to embark toward self-reliance, although it is not possible to stand on its own feet in near future, but concentrating on minerals can be a beginning to lead toward self-sufficiency and break bowl of begging in future.  Concentrating over mines will pave the ground for foreign investment inside the country as well as would bring good incomes with creating enough job opportunities for people across the country.

Transparency in extraction and contract of mines is the most important issue, thus the government must make better policies and managed it properly to create the basis for a vibrant sustainable economy for the country in future.

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