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Afghan carpet industry struggling amid ongoing trade crisis



(Last Updated On: November 6, 2021)

Afghan carpet sellers said on Saturday that their sales have declined and that it has become difficult to export to international markets.

They said that with international relations, including trade, at a standstill and uncertainties in transport, business, and sales have been hit hard as their primary market is foreign buyers.

Shafiqullah Mohammadi, a carpet shop employee stated: “Our international trade relations are suspended and we have suffered a lot because of this.” 

“We used to send our carpets to Asian and European countries, but now we cannot,” he added.

“We still have products, but our sales are very low. We used to sell three or four carpets a day, but now we sell that number a week. Yes, we accept that we are safe and away from suicide attacks, but our request to the Islamic Emirate is not to underestimate carpets, because carpets are Afghanistan’s industry and identity,” said carpet shop employee Mohibullah Kohi. 

Billions of dollars in international aid have also dried up since the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) took Kabul on August 15.  Billions more in foreign currency reserves are locked up in vaults in the West.



Iranian trade delegation visits Balkh for talks with Afghan businessmen



(Last Updated On: November 29, 2023)

An Iranian business delegation has traveled to Balkh province for discussions with Afghan businessmen, including farmers.

The meeting was organized by the Iranian Trade Center in order to support farmers and standardize Afghanistan’s agriculture sector in Balkh province.

The Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Iran Trade Center said at the meeting that his country is helping Afghan farmers to mechanize agriculture and solve infrastructure problems in the sector.

Hossein Azari, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Iran Business Center, said: “I am honored to meet with the businessmen of Mazar-e-Sharif, the head of agriculture, livestock and irrigation of Balkh province, and the high-level officials of the Afghanistan Chamber of Commerce and Investment, and I believe that success is more in teamwork.”

He added: “We hope that the infrastructure of agriculture, the infrastructure of production and industrial units, and the transfer of technical knowledge will become more prosperous with the help of the Islamic Republic of Iran in Afghanistan, and in today’s meeting, there was a discussion on investment in different agricultural sectors in the axis of extra-territorial cultivation and creation of farm process of agricultural products..”

The Chamber of Commerce and Investment of the country also expressed hope that memorandums of understanding will be signed between Afghanistan and Iran.

Khairuddin Mayel, the deputy head of the Afghanistan Chamber of Commerce and Investment, said: “Based on the memorandums signed in the center, we had a meeting with our Iranian friends, and they offered a proposal to standardize Afghanistan’s agriculture, and I think this meeting was very good and useful.”

He added: “I hope that a memorandum of understanding will be signed between the Islamic Republic of Iran and Afghanistan so that we can see progress in agriculture in our beloved country.”

At the same time, officials from the Balkh Department of Agriculture say that they need the support of neighboring countries, especially Iran, to standardize agriculture.

Shamsuddin Khalid, head of agriculture and livestock of Balkh, said: “We are ready to have a memorandum of understanding with the Islamic Republic of Iran and other countries to standardize Afghanistan’s agriculture.”

Efforts are being made to deal with the problems of farmers while the lack of water, the high price of chemical fertilizers, the high price of agricultural spices, the lack of cold storage facilities, and the lack of access to advanced agricultural tools are considered to be the basic problems of the farmers in the country.

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Foundation stone of new industrial park laid in Balkh province



(Last Updated On: November 27, 2023)

The foundation stone of a new industrial park in Balkh province was laid on Sunday in the presence of officials, elders and members of the private sector.

Speaking at a ceremony to mark the occasion, Noorul Hadi Abu Adris, deputy governor of Balkh province, emphasized the need for the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) to encourage and support the private sector. He said: “In order to solve the problems, serious measures and such projects are implemented for the development of the country.”

Syed Mohammad Naeem Mohammadi, general director of industrial parks of the ministry of commerce and industry, thanked the authorities for handing over the land, and setting up this park. He asked businessmen and investors to invest in the park.

The Ministry of Commerce and Industry said that they have allocated about 4,000 acres of land for the industrial park; the first phase will include 244 acres of this land, where a commercial center will be built.

As well as the center, 3.6 kms of walls will be built along with 10 kms of roads. This will be completed within six months. Meanwhile, Nooruddin Azizi, acting minister of commerce and industry, has inaugurated Boost Industrial Estate and National Industrial Estate in Helmand Province.

The press office of the ministry has published a newsletter saying that Azizi said the opening of industrial parks was part of their efforts to industrialize Afghanistan.

Boost Industrial Town covers 175 acres of land and National Industrial Town is on 2,000 acres of land in Helmand province.

The acting minister of industry and trade added that: “The opening of industrial towns in the country, the transformation of Afghanistan from an economy dependent on imports to an economy dependent on exports is the priority of the economic policy of the Islamic Emirate.”

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Iran’s non-oil exports to Afghanistan up 4%



(Last Updated On: November 24, 2023)

The value of Iran’s non-oil exports to Afghanistan increased by four percent during the first seven months of the current Solar year, as compared to the same period of time in the past year, the Tehran Times reported.

According to Ruhollah Latifi, the spokesman of the International Relations and Trade Development Committee of Iran’s House of Industry, Mining and Trade, Iran exported non-oil commodities worth $975 million to Afghanistan in the seven-month period of this year.

Latifi said Iran has a 35 percent share in Afghanistan’s import market, which is a considerable figure in bilateral trade ties.

Mohammad-Mehdi Javanmard-Ghassab, the economic adviser of the Iranian president’s special envoy on Afghanistan affairs, stated that the country is seeking to export technology, technical know-how as well as technical and engineering services to Afghanistan.

Increasing the production of Iranian products in Afghanistan is also on the agenda, he emphasized.

According to Mohammad Ghanadzadeh, the deputy head of Iran’s Trade Promotion Organization (TPO), the trade between Iran and Afghanistan has increased by 20 percent in the current Iranian calendar year (started on March 21).

Ghanadzadeh said Iran is ready to cooperate with Afghanistan in the country’s development and reconstruction projects, Tehran Times reported.

The Iranian and Afghan governments are taking some prominent measures to boost trade between the two countries.

In early March, Iran’s trade center and permanent exhibition of Iranian products was inaugurated in Kabul with the aim of developing trade relations between the two countries.

Then in late July, a joint exhibition of products made in Iran and Afghanistan was held in Herat.

More recently the two countries signed five memorandums of understanding (MOUs) on cooperation in different economic sectors.

The MOUs were signed in a ceremony on November 9 in the presence of Iranian Agriculture Minister Mohammad-Ali Nikbakht, President Raisi’s special envoy for Afghanistan Hassan Kazemi Qomi, and Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar.

The MOUs include the cooperation document of the Iran-Afghanistan Joint Economic Committee meeting, the document of the two sides’ Joint International Road Transport Cooperation Committee meeting, the MOU between Iran’s Civil Aviation Organization (CAO) and the Afghan side, the MOU between Iran’s Esfahan Steel Company and the Afghan side, and the MOU between Iran’s Secretariat of Free Trade and Special Economic Zones and the Afghan sides, Tehran Times reported.

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