Afghanistan: Taliban Announces Draft National Budget Without Foreign Aid

A spokesperson claimed that this was the first budget in two decades that did not consist of any foreign aid.

2 min read
Hindi Female
Edited By :Saundarya Talwar

A finance ministry spokesperson of the Taliban government in Afghanistan announced that it has written a draft national budget, AFP reported on Monday, 21 December.

Ahmad Wali Haqmal also claimed that this was the first Afghanistan budget in 20 years that did not consist of any foreign aid.

He did not, however, reveal the size of the budget, which is supposed to cover almost the entirety of next year (till December 2022).

Haqmal, during an interview to a state television news channel, said that they (Taliban administrators) were "trying to finance it from our [their] domestic revenues" and they had full belief that they would succeed.

A total of 26 billion Afghanis were collected in the last two-and-a-half months, half of which were collected in customs duties.

The current exchange rate (ER) is around 100 Afghanis to the dollar.

When the last budget was prepared by the US-backed Ashraf Ghani government, the ER was around 80 Afghanis to the dollar.

Haqmal added that the budget included several modifications on the pay scale, while accepting that public servants hadn't been paid for several months.

An "Islamic tax" has also been proposed to aid poor people and orphans.

'Avalanche of Hunger' 

The United Nations has said that an "avalanche of hunger" is facing the war-torn country.

Earlier, the UNDP in Afghanistan had said that the country was on the brink of a humanitarian catastrophe due to its extremely weakened banking system, cash crunch, and its limited production capacity.

Foreign aid to Afghanistan had been suspended after the Taliban had taken over in August earlier this year after ousting the Ghani government.

Billions of dollars in assets held abroad had also been frozen by the US and European allies.

(With inputs from AFP)

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Topics:  Afghanistan   Taliban 

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