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US offers $1.3b aid for Afghan power system

US offers $1.3b aid for Afghan power system

Aug 24, 2011 - 20:11

KABULinfo-icon (PANinfo-icon): The United States on Wednesday pledged id="mce_marker".3 billion in assistance to strengthen Afghanistaninfo-icon's electricity system and improve the capacity of some universities, a cabinet minister said.

A contract to the effect was signed between Afghan and US officials in Kabul. Finance Minister Omar Zakhilwal told reporters a major portion would be spent on modernising power-generating units and the distribution system over the next four years.

Without giving details, the minister said the assistance would be used to strengthen the capacity of some universities and teachers. Zakhilwal said $980 million would be spent directly by the Afghan government and the rest by the US.

Da Afghanistan Brekhna Shirkat (DABS) chief, Abdul Raziq Samadi, told Pajhwok Afghan News power supply lines would be extended to southeastern provinces of Paktia, Paktika and Khost.

According to the Ministry of Water and Energy, Afghanistan has 900 megawatts of imported, solar and hydel power, with 700 megawatts alone in Kabul. Samadi said due to fewer and aging power networks, only 220 megawatts of electricity were being utilised in Kabul.



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