The Kabul times, Afghanistan Trustable News Agency.

Islamic Emirate at a glance

Summary of the most significant accomplishments of the
Islamic Emirate 2022 – 2023

By: Hashmat Nasiri

Part X

  1. Support Private Sector One of the paramount considerations for economic development lies in fostering the involvement of the private sector in investment activities. Adhering to this principle, the Islamic Emirate has actively extended crucial financial facilitations to bolster the growth, development, and service delivery within the private sector. The key financial aids and exemptions implemented for the private sector in the past year are outlined as follows: 1. A 2% exemption from turnover taxes to encourage industrial expansion and progress within the country. 2. A 7% waiver on contractual taxes for sectors encompassing agriculture, industry, and commerce, aimed at stimulating growth and providing support to these vital industries. 3. Cancellation of the 4% quarterly turnover tax for private universities and schools for a duration of one year. 4. Provision of financial facilities tailored for online service providers. 5. Mandatory provision of essential facilities at national ports by all government entities, facilitating smoother operations for traders and industrial stakeholders. Moreover, in a bid to fortify the private sector and considering prevailing economic circumstances, the Islamic Emirate has instituted various tax penalty waivers. These initiatives stand as tangible milestones towards nurturing the private sector’s growth trajectory within the country. Additionally, the formalization and categorization of professions hold significant importance. Over the past year, approximately half a million professions have been meticulously registered and categorized across central and provincial levels, marking a notable 24% increase from previous records. This initiative underscores a pivotal stride in organizing and empowering the private sector. 2. Utilizing water and energy for economic development Water and energy constitute two vital and fundamental sectors crucial for the economic advancement of a nation, warranting substantial emphasis on effective management and development. Over the past two years, the Islamic Emirate has notably heightened its attention to this matter, culminating in significant achievements in the proficient administration of these pivotal sectors, leading to promising future outcomes. Water management The water sector operates within four domains, encompassing governance, water management, water engineering services, and management of water resources. Given the critical importance of this sector, the Islamic Emirate has made concerted efforts in this regard and has achieved remarkable milestones as well. A. Governance One of the key strategies in water management is the harmonization of water programs with its governance. In this context, the resumption of rehabilitation work on the Shah Wa Aros dam in Kabul Province, the Pashdan dam in Herat Province, the Namak Aab irrigation project in Takhar Province, the second phase of the Kajaki dam project in Helmand Province, the tunneling of the Bakshabad dam in Farah Province, and the implementation of the sea dam reinforcement project in the Amu River are among the most significant initiatives undertaken in this regard. Furthermore, executing protective and maintenance projects for 10 dams and canals across various provinces, standardizing project documentation, reviewing and endorsing 6 technical management protocols, hosting numerous sessions with international institutions and foreign organizations to attract investment in water projects, and signing MoUs with several entities are notable accomplishments achieved in the past year. These endeavors have had considerable and positive effects on water management within the country. B. Permit and control Permit and control of water also play a crucial role in water management. Increased attention to this sector in the past year has yielded positive results. Water regulation, irrigation, and canal construction in coastal areas of the country, gathering data on private water supply company operations in urban and rural areas, national-level water conflict resolution, effective alignment with laws and regulations, management of water permits, and water allocation in Kabul and the provinces, are among the significant activities undertaken in this sector. C. Water resources management A comprehensive groundwater assessment system has been introduced in the country for the first time as part of water resource management initiatives. Additionally, the technical details of springs, aqueducts, and surface water resources are being documented in the National Water Information Bank. Moreover, extensive efforts have been made to evaluate the groundwater conditions in 17 cities, including the excavation of hundreds of absorption wells for rainwater and snow storage, the establishment of surveillance networks for surface water resources, and the development and compilation of data for surface water resource analysis. These significant undertakings have resulted in notable improvements and standardization in the management of the country’s water resources. Energy sector management The Islamic Emirate has demonstrated a comprehensive focus on the energy sector, which encompasses energy policy formulation, program development, regulation of energy services, and the establishment of electronic energy markets and sustainable energy initiatives. Significant tangible accomplishments have been achieved in this domain over the past year: A. Attracting investment for energy program alignment Efforts have been diligently pursued over the past year to facilitate investment in the country through energy policy-making, planning, and program implementation. As a result, notable progress has been achieved, accompanied by positive outcomes: 1. Holding a conference to attract and encourage investors. 2. Signing six contracts with domestic and foreign companies to attract investment for electricity production from domestic sources. 3. Reviewing and collecting information on 15 projects. 4. Evaluating proposals and plans from investors. 5. Efforts to implement regional projects such as CASA1000 and TAP. 6. Developing and approving four policies and three guidelines for energy conservation. B. Sustainable Energy Management Over the past year, preliminary data and statistics regarding the solar energy capacity for installing solar devices have been systematically compiled in some provinces such as Kunar, Bamyan, Kandahar, Ghazni, and Daikundi, aimed at achieving sustainable energy management across the nation. Moreover, significant efforts have been made during this period, including feasibility assessments for five solar energy projects in the mentioned provinces, the formulation of impactful awareness programs, initiatives for energy conservation and preservation within governmental institutions, and preliminary studies to ascertain the necessary standards. These endeavors represent the major achievements in the energy sector over the past year.

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The Kabul times, Afghanistan Trustable News Agency.