Finance minister rules out crisis over next 3 years
KABUL (Pajhwok): Finance Minister Aklil Hakimi on Wednesday said Afghanistan would not face any financial problems in next three year as foreign aid worth $4 billion had been deposited in the state exchequer.
Unveiling his ministry's 100-day action plan, he said the country’s exchequer was empty when he took charge. The bills of last year were still unpaid, he added.
However, the minister said after successful negotiations with the World Bank (WB), the United States and United Kingdom, the promised aid had landed in Afghanistan treasury.
An amount of $3 billion was provided by the WB, $800 million by the US and another $500 million by the UK. Hakimi said talks with the European Union (EU), China, Germany and other countries were underway.
He said efforts were underway to attract foreign direct investment and increase domestic revenue besides struggle for foreign aid in order to push Afghanistan towards economic self reliance.
The finance minister said efforts were on to introduce a balanced budget in the future and reduce government expenditures to benefit common people.
Hakimi said evaluation of budget in the middle of the year, finalisation of strategic plan, ensuring gender equality, expansion of national budget plan from 16 to 25 budgetary units and finalisation of provincial budgets would be top priorities of his ministry in coming three months.
In future, he said the country budget would be introduced for three years period and there would be more focus on provincial budgets particularly of small provinces.
Future budgets would address areas from where masses could benefit the most, he said, adding it would help improve living standard of the people.
He said the 100-day plan would focus on completion of long and small terms development projects.
He informed introduction of computerized system of money transfer, amendment in the insurance law and introduction of more articles, enhancing the capacity of administrative system of the ministry, connecting all political department of municipality with the ministry through new computerized system, transfer of revenue to the treasury on daily basis, mapping a strategy for revenue collection from costume office across the country and registration of new tax depositors were other priorities the ministry would focus on in coming three months.
He also said that an agreement would be signed with the ministry of trade and commerce which would focus over elimination of corruption, transparent collection of revenue and taxes, recruitment of honest individuals in ports and improving the capacity of government officials.
He added agreement with regional countries would be reached with regional countries for sharing custom related information.
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