Analysts Hope SOM, RECCA Summits Boost Economy

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Following three days of two separate high-level meetings in Kabul, political analysts and economists hailed the summits as successful and said they hoped the outcomes would help boost Afghanistan’s economy.

Saturday saw the one-day Senior Officials Meeting (SOM) wrap up, while the two-day Regional Economic Conference on Afghanistan (RECCA-VI) ended on Friday.

Both summits were attended by dozens of delegates from at least 60 countries and donor organizations.

Analysts said meetings such as RECCA and SOM revive trust on a regional and international level and can help boost investment.

“The presence of the international community in the past three days within the framework of two important meetings – after the establishment of the National Unity Government – is a great achievement,” said head of Afghanistan Investment Supporting Agency (AISA), Mohammad Qurban Haqjo.
“The international community once again reaffirmed their commitments to the people of Afghanistan,” he added.

University professor Sardar Mohammad Rahimi said: “I personally talked to a number of participants at RECCA conference and they said that in terms of management and planning, the management and programming were quite encouraging compared to 5th RECCA summit and other summits held in Dushanbe, New Delhi and Istanbul. Delegates said that in some cases, the management [of the summit] was beyond their expectations.”

The Afghan security forces have also been praised after ensuring the capital was secure enough to host the events in a peaceful environment.

Some economic analysts have also expressed satisfaction over the growing abilities of the Afghan government to boost the national economy by forging closer ties with the international community.

Investors say that RECCA and SOM meetings were hopefully effective enough to attract investment in the country.

“Holding of the meetings has developed hopes to increase investment. Currently investors are working with numerous problems while other investors have transferred their money out of the country. Therefore government needs to take measures and bring investors back,” deputy head of Afghanistan’s Industrial Association, Abdul Jabbar Safai said.

Economic analyst Rahimuddin Hajji Aqa said: “Government needs to consider transparency. It wants to get international aid and should not allow the aid to be transferred to personal accounts.”

“In recent years, government’s main focus has been on getting aid. But we know that the international community was not supposed to help Afghanistan forever. Work should be done on the economic infrastructure of the country and domestic resources should be utilized for economic growth so that the reliance of Afghanistan on aid is reduced,” university lecturer Haseeb Mawhid said.

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