Qataris Eye More Investment in Farah: Minister
Qatari business people are seeking to invest in the western Afghan province of Farah with an aim to upgrade the provincial airfield into an international airport, an Afghan official said Sunday.
Afghan voice agency (AVA)_The industry and commerce minister, Nisar Ahmad #Ghoryani, addressing a press conference on Sunday, said that Chinese, Iranian and European investors are in Kabul to review investment opportunities in the country.
Last May, Algharrafa Foundation, a Qatari organization, provided $1 million worth of aid and pledged to build a hospital in Farah province.
Qatari businesspeople have also invested in the agricultural sector in Farah province over the last three years.
#Qatari_institutions have also invested in Kabul. Last December, officials held a ground-breaking ceremony for the construction of a township by the #Al-Gharafa Foundation in Kabul.
The $110-million township will be built on 6 hectares of land in Kabul's Khoshal Khan area.
The minister said Qataris want to build infrastructure in Farah and open the way for the export of products from the province to international destinations.
“They are ready to make the Farah airport international and work on (building) cold storage facilities where all products are kept and then sent abroad,” Ghoryani said.
Meanwhile, Economy Minister Karima Hamid Faryabi said that the country’s economic growth is expected to increase 2.5 to 3% this fiscal year, but this will not be enough to make a serious difference in economic health.
“This rate of economic growth is less compared with the speedy growth in population and will not have a significant impact on the reduction of poverty, job creation and access to basic services,” #Faryabi said.
Industry owners said that insecurity, #lack_of_electricity and other problems have plagued their businesses and have lowered investment in industries by 50 percent.
“Lack of sufficient electricity, wrong policies by neighboring countries, the influx of imported goods, the smuggling of goods, all have resulted in the bottoming-out of investments,” said #Nasir_Reshtia, CEO of an industrial union.
But the industry and commerce minister said that despite the fact that many businesses have left the country, the interest in investment has increased in Afghanistan recently as 300 factories are on the verge of being established.