- The World Bank said in a press statement issued August 22 it is seeking to expand its consultations after consulting with stakeholders in the international community and Afghanistan.
- According to World Bank estimates, Afghanistan must achieve peace as it moves towards self-reliance.
- Afghanistan remains heavily dependent on external support, with international aid still paying about three-quarters of its service, infrastructure and security needs.
The World Bank has issued a statement announcing the launch of an advisory program in support of continuing peace in Afghanistan. The program was called in support of the country’s continued economic growth and new opportunities after reaching an agreement with the Taliban.
The World Bank said in a press statement issued yesterday (August 22), it is seeking to expand its consultations after consulting with stakeholders in the international community and Afghanistan. The Conference of Ministers from the Donor States in Geneva tasked the World Bank to launch a support plan for economic development projects following the peace agreement in Afghanistan.
“First, we want to show that a peace agreement can bring substantial economic benefits to all Afghans and is in the interest of all parties involved in the ongoing conflict,” said Henry Kerali, the World Bank Country Director for Afghanistan. “Second, we want to identify potential principles and themes to guide programming decisions following a settlement. Finally, we want to provide some concrete ideas about the kind of programs that could be scaled up or initiated to maintain peace and realize new economic opportunities in Afghanistan.”
“The World Bank is merely providing technical analysis and is not involved in any negotiations; our priority is to plan for the future of Afghanistan,” Kerali added.
According to World Bank estimates, Afghanistan must achieve peace as it moves towards self-reliance. Continuation of international aid after political peace agreements is important. Taliban representatives have also called for continued assistance from the international community following the peace deal in Afghanistan.
Some Afghan peace process observers also believe that the World Bank’s readiness brings an atmosphere to future peace agreements in Afghanistan.
According to the World Bank estimates, the world community, with their continued assistance, has improved economic and social development in Afghanistan. That includes access to health and education, reducing child mortality, increasing life expectancy, increasing per capita income, functioning of government institutions, and access to energy infrastructure and communications services. However, Afghanistan remains heavily dependent on external support, with international aid still paying about three-quarters of its service, infrastructure and security needs.
The World Bank recommends that “continued investment in basic services and infrastructure is critical to Afghanistan’s economic development and self-reliance. Combining a well-innovated work environment with expanded infrastructure can create business start-ups and improve business. Private sector growth can generate tax revenue and reduce Afghanistan’s current reliance on foreign aid.”
The World Bank report on the principles to be applied to improve post-peace conditions states that it is “giving a signal of change,” and improving post-peace life and promoting equality and integration to ensure needs-based rather than communications-based benefits. Politics, and being in the armed groups should be considered, otherwise, the evidence suggests that it may lead to discontent and corruption.
It also intended to create opportunities for youth and women and to promote social stability. Precision is important in preventing conflict and escalating social divisions.