EUCCA inaugurated, to work with Afghan trade bodiesBy Meer Agha Nasrat Samimi Feb 21, 2012 - 13:51
KABUL (PAN): The European Union Chamber of Commerce in Afghanistan (EUCCA) would work with the EU chambers of commerce and business support organisations, as well as Afghan entities, officials said.
The EUCCA was inaugurated at a luxury hotel in Kabul on Monday night, with Minister of Finance Omar Zakhilwal, Minister of Commerce and Industry Anwar-ul Haq Ahadi and EU Special Representative Vygaudas Ušackas attending the inaugural ceremony.
A private sector initiative supported by the EU Delegation in Afghanistan, the chamber would act as the voice of the European business community and develop trade and commercial and industrial relations between Afghanistan and the 27 EU states.
It would work with EU chambers of commerce and business support bodies and the Afghan Chamber of Commerce and Industries, the Afghan Investment Support Agency, the Afghan Business Council and other entities.
Afghanistan's third largest trading partner, European Union exports to the landlocked country have doubled in the last five years to almost 800m euros, a EU statement said.
Chris Burgess, a founding member of EUCCA, said: “EU and Afghan markets are already strongly connected. Lloyds of London currently underwrite more than EUR 13 billion of risk in Afghanistan. EUCCA will play a vital role in creating jobs and expanding the network of business relationships between EU and Afghan businesses.”
Speaking on the occasion, Ambassador Ušackas said: “I am confident EUCCA will play a full part in promoting increased EU trade with Afghanistan, job creation and Afghan prosperity more widely.”