Publication: Trade and Regional Cooperation between Afghanistan and its Neighbors
The report envisages significant, medium-term benefits for Afghanistan and its neighbors from trade policy liberalization, from country-by-country reforms in trade logistics, and, especially within Afghanistan, from road rehabilitation and building a commercially-oriented enabling environment for trade, private investment and entrepreneurial development. The growth of regional and transit trade will boost private investment and growth in the short-to-medium term and help to realize the long-term vision for Afghanistan as a country moving toward middle-income status, based on sustainable development of its resources. Recommendations focused on Afghanistan include calls for priority action, with broad support from the international community, aimed at: improving security throughout the country both for persons and property; completing the main road rehabilitation, extending telephone and other telecommunication systems and ensuring that after reconstruction maintenance is undertaken to sustain roads in good condition; streamlining of border crossing procedures; reestablishing formal financial and insurance systems including development of a effective clearance and settlement system; implementing a national customs and transit system; eliminating restrictions on direct transit; removing internal checking-posts and en-route inspections; and increasing domestic trucking competition. To foster a strong, enabling environment for domestic and foreign trade, the study also advocates a set of immediate and short-term measures, including implementing a functioning payments system for international and domestic transfers though the formal banking system; making transit bonds and transport insurance available to shippers; redefining the role of the Afghan Ministry of Commerce to emphasize its mandate in trade and investment promotion relative to it role in trade regulation; supporting a larger role, distinct from that of government, for a private chamber of commerce to assist in export promotion; designing and implementing major capacity-building programs to develop skills and professionalism in banking, insurance and customs; and encouraging truckers and freight forwarders to establish national private industry organizations and to affiliate with international organizations.
Link to Data Set
“World Bank. 2004. Trade and Regional Cooperation between Afghanistan and its Neighbors. © Washington, DC. http://hdl.handle.net/10986/15547 License: CC BY 3.0 IGO.”