Afghanistan Analysts Network – English

Economy, Development, Environment

This priority area covers Afghanistan’s political economy, economic development and poverty, with a focus on sectors with important political and/or rule of law implications, such as mining, banking and transport and, in the past, the private security sector.

Droughts on the Horizon: Can Afghanistan manage this risk? 

Mhd Assem Mayar

In the last two decades, Afghanistan has experienced more droughts than ever before. New data suggest that after two relatively good years, the country is facing a moderate-to-high drought risk for the new year 1400 (2021). Half of Afghanistan’s agricultural land depends on spring rainfall, which has become less reliable because of climate change. Annual droughts in […]

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mountains

Shrinking, Thinning, Retreating: Afghan glaciers under threat from climate change

Jelena Bjelica

Lying high up in Afghanistan’s highest mountains, hidden from most human eyes, are almost 4,000 glaciers, according to the first comprehensive Afghan glacier database. These glaciers are of critical importance for Afghans for supplying water for drinking and irrigation. Yet research shows Afghanistan’s glaciers are melting. Almost 14 per cent of the total area of […]

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“Eat and Don’t Die”: Daily-wage labour as a window into Afghan society

S Reza Kazemi

At a time when Afghanistan’s economy continues to deteriorate due to intensified conflict and the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, AAN researcher Reza Kazemi gives a voice to daily-wage labourers who flock to busy town squares to find work and are among the poorest in the country. Based on conversations and observations in the major […]

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Covid-19 in Afghanistan (8): The political economy repercussions of Covid-19 and the aid response

Bill Byrd

In addition to its disastrous public health effects on Afghanistan, the Covid-19 pandemic is harming the country’s economy and has pushed more people into poverty. Covid is also creating a sizable hole in the national budget, diverting precious aid resources away from development and any possible ‘peace dividend’ and complicating rather than simplifying current political […]

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Covid-19 in Afghanistan (7): The effects of the pandemic on the private lives and safety of women at home

Khadija Hossaini

Covid-19 has had an alarming effect on Afghanistan, exacerbating poverty and reducing access to health care, in addition to the deaths and illness. The pandemic has also had specific consequences for women, particularly during lockdown, including increased levels of domestic violence and reduced access to schools and medical care. AAN’s Khadija Hossaini discovered that women […]

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Covid-19 in Afghanistan (6): A closer look at the MoPH’s official figures

Rohullah Sorush

When AAN first tried to map the trends in the spread of the Coronavirus pandemic in Afghanistan in March 2020, almost three months after the first outbreak in China, we found that the country had only been moderately affected. Since then, the number of confirmed infections and deaths have risen, but numbers remain relatively modest, particularly […]

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Covid-19 in Afghanistan (5): Snapshots of women’s living under coronavirus in and around Herat city

S Reza Kazemi

In Herat, Afghanistan’s second most-infected province, women have been disproportionately hit by the secondary effects of Covid-19. AAN researcher Reza Kazemi has been hearing from women in the province about extra care and housework, increased levels of domestic violence, greater restrictions on movement and their concerns about their children, given school closures. He also finds […]

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New World Drug Report: Opium production in Afghanistan remained the same in 2019

Jelena Bjelica

The United Nations Drugs and Crime Office’s (UNODC) World Drug Report, released today, shows a decrease in the cultivation of opium in Afghanistan in 2019 following price falls after the bumper years in 2017 and 2018. However, in 2019 when weather conditions were optimal for growing poppy and plant disease absent, yields were high. Overall, that meant […]

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UNAMA’s New Report on Anti-corruption: More backsliding from government and growing frustration from donors

Jelena Bjelica

The annual UNAMA anti-corruption report released today shows that the institutional fight against graft in Afghanistan between January 2019 and April 2020 has stalled in many areas. While the report acknowledges that the reform agenda has been overshadowed by the presidential elections and the pandemic, it does not hold back from pointing to failures in […]

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The Cost of Support to Afghanistan: New special report considers the causes of inequality, poverty and a failing democracy

Kate Clark

A new AAN special report looks at why the political vision of the 2002 Bonn Agreement and 2004 constitution with its promises of a representative democracy has failed to materialise. It finds answers in the huge levels of unearned foreign income that has flowed into Afghanistan since 2001, both aid and the money spent by […]

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Covid-19 in Afghanistan (3): Distributing aid and changing aid politics – view from a Herati village

S Reza Kazemi

At a time when coronavirus-related aid in Afghanistan is becoming a topic of heated discussion, and the cause of some unfortunate violent incidents, the aid that flowed into a rural community in Afghanistan’s western province of Herat was bitterly and deeply contested. With the day-to-day rhythm of life in this already impoverished village troubled by […]

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Nad Ali desert

One Land, Two Rules (10): Three case studies on Taleban sales of state land

Fazl Rahman Muzhary

As the Taleban have expanded their areas of control around the country, anecdotal reports have been popping up of Taleban commissions and commanders in several provinces selling state land. However, a closer look into the three most prominent examples – Helmand, Uruzgan and Takhar – reveals a murkier picture than media reports and claims by government […]

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