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    Germany, Holland pledge 35.6 m euros in aid

    KABUL (PAN): Holland and Germany on Sunday pledged 35.6 million euros in aid to Afghanistan for the development of agriculture and education sectors.

    Two contracts to the effect were signed among Education Minister Ghulam Farooq Wardak, Dutch Ambassador to Afghanistan Radnik van Vollenhoven, and German Chargé d'Affaires Thomas Zahneisen.

    Under the agreement with the Netherlands, the Dutch government would provide 15. 6 million euros to the education ministry for conducting trainings, mechanising agriculture, building the capacity of experts and constructing an institute, Wardak told a ceremony in Kabul.

    He said the proposed agriculture institute would be built in the Jangalak area of Kabul until March 2012. The institute would have accommodation for 800 students, the minister said, adding the aid would be focused on providing training to growers and teachers.

    Radnik said his country had so far provided about 800 million euros in assistance to Afghanistan over the past decade. He said Holland was committed to continue assisting Afghanistan beyond 2014.

    Wardak also signed a 20 million euros agreement with German chargé d'affaires, Thomas Zahneisen. The agreement was also signed by Deputy Finance Minister Shafiq Qari Zada and a representative of the German Development Bank in Afghanistan, Gunnar Waelzholz.

    Wardak said the amount would be spent through the Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund to improve infrastructure and quality of education. 

    Zahneisen said his country had donated 243 million euros to Afghanistan over the past 10 years, with 58 million euros going to the education sector. He promised cooperation with Afghanistan until 2020.

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