Balkh traders share problems with govt in booklet
MAZAR-I-SHARIF (Pajhwok): Traders say the lack of infrastructure, high electricity prices, problems at customs offices and administrative corruption have created hurdles for industries and businesses to sustain growth in northern Balkh province.
The traders shared these problems in form of a booklet with government officials at a gathering organised by the provincial chamber of commerce and industry in Mazar-i-Sharif, the provincial capital, on Wednesday.
A large number of traders and industrialists attended the gathering. Balkh chamber of commerce and industry chief executive Nasir Ahmad Qasimi told Pajhwok Afghan News on the sidelines of the gathering that they had consulted and discussed with 400 traders and industrialists in Balkh and nearby provinces problems they faced.
After listening to their problems, Qasimi said they presented their recommendations and solutions to these problems in form of a report to the provincial authorities.
“In Balkh, the lack of infrastructure, high price of electricity, administrative corruption in some departments and problems in customs offices are serious hurdles in the development of industries and trade,” he said.
He said the shifting of insecurity to northern provinces had also created huge problems for industrialists and businessmen. He said the mentioned problems could result in a massive capital flight from Afghanistan.
Qasimi said both provincial and central governments should take serious steps towards resolving problems being faced by traders of Balkh province.
Balkh industrialists union member Yaqub Ali Mohbi said the major problems traders faced in Balk were high prices of electricity, the lack of infrastructure projects, land and the one-year short duration of work permits.
He said all these issues had been shared with government officials time and again, but no action had been taken in this regard.
Balkh commerce and industries director Sher Ahmad Sapahizada confirmed problems mentioned by the traders, but Balkh did not produce its own electricity and was reliant on imported electricity.
He said most problems facing traders resulted from the unstable Afghan currency.
He said despite all these problems, businesses in Balkh were flourishing and from food to all other essential daily-use items could be easily found in the provincial capital.
He said the recommendations of traders and industrialists about their problems would be discussed with high officials to find solution to them.
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