Editorial: Reversing economic tantrum
Besetting reports have abounded indicating that Afghanistan’s economy has inadvertently been embroiled in a crunch – which can hardly be circumvented hook, line and sinker – in the wake of the eccentrically prolonged war and increasingly acrimonious political stalemate. The country has been subjected to acute economic tantrum. Issues perceived to have hurt economy fall in sphere of political controversies. The lingering wrangling over the controversial peace process and the resulting deadlocks has detrimentally impinged upon the core of Afghanistan’s infrastructural stability and economic prowess.
The largesse of foreign governments exponentially clings on the recalibration of the country’s political power after the fettered peace and reconciliation culminates in something substantial. With the foreign support and survival of businesses hinging upon the very fate of the country, the economy dramatically plunged, investments and entrepreneurships shrank to minimum, thousands lost their jobs, the government treasury depleted, and security deteriorated countrywide.
Insecurity has spewed maximum impairments on economic infrastructure as the inflow of foreign aid dropped theatrically. Business environment has also been deteriorating. This serves as a sobering reminder that our economy might be on the precipice of crisis. A vivid indication of this argument is the aggregate financial losses and capital flights. Investors’ fear sparked capital flight, which can be linked to the uncertain situation that had been scaring them away. Insecurity has resulted in capital flight from the country amounting to almost billions. The government revenue has also reduced sharply. Construction works have also plummeted and firms have either sold their equipment at low prices or have taken their capital out of the country. Also activities of private firms had shrunk.
For businesses to flourish, the prime brass tacks are security, peace and political stability and business-friendly policies. Political instabilities usually cause businesses to slump and capital flight to surge. Although the government had stepped up stringent action to bridge the economic chasms and formulated expedient policies to lure foreign investment, insecurity and the enduring political instability have thrown businesses and investments to the curb. Crises hit this war-weary nation even when we were already in while of the binge of terrorism.
If the situation persists, the progress made in the past decade will be reversed and Afghanistan will probably have undergone deeper uncertainty. In essence, two poles or, simply put, two power centers within a government might have not been suitable for Afghanistan and an utter and optimum solution to the political impasses. A seemingly obvious possibility to reverse the precipitous economic decline is reinstatement of political stability and writ of government. That could turn into inevitability if political leaders shed differences and understand the gravity of the current situation surrounding our society and economy.
AT Kabul: Nooruddin Azizi, head of the Ministry of Industry and Commerce and leader of …