Economists Predict Tough Times As Investments Fall

INVESTMENTS-21-11

Talking on the prospects of Afghanistan’s economic development, officials from the Central Statistics Organization (CSO) and Afghanistan Chamber of Commerce and Industries (ACCI) on Monday said they anticipate tough economic times ahead amid a 59 percent fall in domestic and foreign investment in the country.

They in turn appealed to government to define a working economic policy to curb disinvestment and revive investors’ trust.

The ACCI said that government has failed to address the issue.

Economists believe that security threats and the surge in violence have overshadowed the economic progress of Afghanistan.

“The decline in gross domestic product (GDP) leads to a decline in investments, this would have negative implications for the economic growth of the country,” said head of CSO Haseebullah Mawhid.

According to ACCI, security threats, large scale corruption in government institutions, high taxes and kidnapping in the private sector are the main obstacles in the way of economic growth from an investment point of view.

“The government does not have a program in the short term to attract investment,” said ACCI spokesman Seyam Pesarlai.

“The investors do not have enough trust to invest amid the fragile security situation; the government needs to come up with clear policies to resolve the problem,” said Abdul Karim Arefi, a member of the industrialist union.

According to the CSO, existing investments in the first nine months of the current year dropped by 59 percent compared to the same period last year.

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