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.

The Rise and Fall of the Kabul Bank – making the details public

Martine van Bijlert

Much has been written about the Kabul Bank crisis. A series of confidential investigations and audits have described the legal violations and technical processes involved in the bank management’s fraudulent operations, and most of these reports were fairly widely leaked. Media appearances by the various protagonists and representatives of government institutions involved in the follow-up […]

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Education in times of waseta: the example of Badakhshan

Fabrizio Foschini

It is common wisdom that teachers are among the most important sections of Afghan society, as far as reconstructing the country goes. Also, almost everybody agrees that they are among the most underpaid and unempowered classes in Afghanistan. On the occasion of World Teachers’ Day, celebrated today in Afghanistan, AAN’s Fabrizio Foschini, who has just […]

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Kanda and Backyard Pools: Faryabi Ways of Coping with Water Shortages

Obaid Ali

Only 27 per cent of Afghanistan’s population has access to safe water sources, according to the government in Kabul. Faryab, a province in the country’s north, is an example of where access to potable water causes major problems for the inhabitants. Storing water for dry periods has always been a challenge there. Now problems have […]

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Right Livelihood Award for Sima Samar

Kate Clark

Dr Sima Samar, chair of the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) has won this year’s Right Livelihood Award – along with a British anti-arms campaigning group, a Turkish environmental campaigner and a veteran American thinker and activist for non-violent resistance. The jury said they awarded Samar what is often called the alternative Nobel peace […]

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Lack of Capacity and Capital: Is Afghanistan Under-Selling the Ainak Copper?

Gran Hewad

Containing 240 million metric tons of ore at 2.3 per cent copper content, the Ainak mine is considered one of the largest deposits of this metal in the world. It is located in Muhammad Agha district of Logar province, about 30 kilometres south-east of the Afghan capital, and was contracted to a Chinese consortium in […]

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Guest Blog: Big Bucks for Big Players – Logistic fortunes of the Afghan war

Mohammad Jawad

The logistics business is one of the most lucrative yet murkiest aspects of international security operations in Afghanistan. Involving backroom dealings and hundreds of millions of dollars, the stakes are high, as is the alleged involvement of the Afghan political elite. So who’s running the show, what are the scams, and what will happen as […]

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Jumble of Figures: How much money came out of Tokyo?

Thomas Ruttig

The Tokyo conference on Afghanistan is over. The participating donors came up with pledges of US$16 billion in development aid (1) – but pledges not always translate into money transfers (and aid effectiveness is another issue). My AAN colleague, Kate Clark, has already rightly pointed out in her 8 July blog that money alone cannot […]

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Flash from the Past: the 2002 Tokyo conference – the world’s most difficult story

Kate Clark

Today’s conference on aid in Tokyo (8 July 2012) has come ten years after international donors first pledged money to post-Taleban Afghanistan. In January 2002, they promised $3 billion (over varying numbers of years, depending on the donor) which was then an enormous sum, although it turned out to be a small drop compared to […]

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Beyond the Tokyo Centre-Court: Civil Society Concerns

Gran Hewad

Today’s Tokyo Conference is the third such event in a month, following the second ‘Afghanistan: Heart of Asia’ conference in Kabul on 14 June and the Delhi Investment Summit on Afghanistan on 28 June. There have also been three other events in Tokyo, involving the UN, aid agencies and civil society organisations in the run-up […]

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Renewal of the Vows: The Tokyo conference between ritual and necessity

Tomorrow in Tokyo an international conference on Afghanistan is set to start, a little over a decade after the first donor conference on Afghanistan of the post-Taleban era took place in Japan’s capital. Between then and now many of such conference have been held, in many different places and in increasing frequency; on average once […]

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Potholes on ISAF’s Northern Exit: a road trip through the Salang

Martin Gerner

The news that Pakistan has agreed to re-open supply routes to Afghanistan (1) after a seven month diplomatic standoff between Washington and Islamabad will not only ease the costs for the US and other NATO member states for their withdrawal plans. It also procures northern Afghanistan – namely its road system and population – some […]

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The Battle for Schools in Ghazni – or, Schools as a Battlefield

Fabrizio Foschini

The anti-Taleban uprising by the people of Andar in the spring surprised many observers and, quite possibly, the insurgents themselves. This made it possible to portray it as a spontaneous struggle of local villagers for the right to education during its first weeks. Now, a month later, AAN’s Fabrizio Foschini feels that, rather than risk […]

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