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EU sees economic integration, connectivity key to Afghan peace

AT News Report

KABUL: The European Union delegations in Kabul and private sectors plus Afghan government officials attended a meeting on the “Advancing Afghan Trade, project that has been facilitated by International Trade Center.  

The project is EU-funded initiative, launched in November 2016 which aims to strengthen the country’s trade capacities so as to capitalize on the accession of the country to the World Trade Organization. The project supports Afghanistan to improve its business environment in order for Afghan products to integrate the regional and global value chains, a joint statement from EU delegation in Afghanistan and the Minisstry of Industry and Commerce said on Saturday.

The Participants reviewed the progress over the last 3 years of the project, and discussed plans for the activities to be further implemented until the end of this phase in six-month time, the statement added.

‘Working on trade in Afghanistan is working on peace. We are supporting the Afghan Government’s trade agenda through the ‘Advancing Afghan Trade’. EU prioritizes economic integration and connectivity as a key to achieving peace’ said Pierre Mayaudon, Ambassador and Head of EU Delegation in Afghanistan. ‘I announce the continuation of the EU’s support for years 2020-24 through phase 2 of the project, funded by €12 million’ Ambassador Mayaudon added.

The ‘Advancing Afghan Trade’ EU-funded project supports MoIC’s objective to reach $1.0bn of exports this year’ said Ajmal Ahmady, Afghanistan’s Minister of Industry & Commerce.

In the coming months, until the end of phase 1, the project will further support bilateral dialogues with trading partners from the region, coach SMEs on exports procedures, launch the Afghanistan trade portal, see the Afghanistan National Trade Policy officially endorsed by the Afghan government and finalize the preparations and design of the phase 2 due to start in the 1st quarter of 2020.   

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