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Billions of dollars smuggled to Iran through official channels

AT News Report

KABUL: A reliable source revealed that some four to five billion dollars were smuggled to Iran from Afghanistan through official channels in 2018.

The amounts were smuggled through borders in western Herat province. The source added the local officials were aware of the smuggling.

The western borders have been the channels for drug smuggling and human trafficking, but now dollar finds its way to Iran.

According to new regulation by Afghanistan’s Central Bank, individuals do not need permission to carry up to 10,000 USD outside of the country. A person said that he had carried 30,000 USD to Iran and had profited 100 to 150 USD.

A Money Exchanger in Herat said dollar was smuggled through air corridors and border lands to Iran. “When exchange rate is different in Afghanistan and Iran, I would travel much to Iran,” The money exchanger added. “Every day, as much as 2 million USD smuggled to Iran.”

Head of Western Zone Banks, Anwar Shah Yousufi, said that the reasons behind the smuggling of dollars to Iran varied. He accused border custom officials of failing to conduct their duties. Money lenders seized the opportunity to smuggle dollar into Iran.

The smuggling of dollars into Iran has led to the drop of Afghani value against dollar in the country. Today, the exchange rate of dollar to Afghani was 80. The drop of Afghani value has made history in the last decade.

Following the rise of dollar exchange rate with Afghani, the price of primary food goods went high dramatically in the country.       

 However, the United States’ renewal of sanctions on Iran is having an unintended knock-on effect on Afghanistan. The Afghani currency is taking a beating as dollar smuggler rush to provide much-needed dollar to the Iranian economy.   

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