Ministry of Mines and Petroleum officials say they have established committees to tackle problems relating to 15 mining projects in the country.
Officials said the ministry has prioritized the issue of resolving these problems.
“This issue is a priority and resolving the problems around these projects is very important for the people of Afghanistan and for the country’s economy,” said Waliullah Zadran, acting director of legal services for the ministry of mines.
However, mining experts have said that in the absence of a clear vision for the development of mines in the country, problems in relation to the projects will continue.
These mining experts also said the lack of capacity within the ministry of mines is an ongoing challenge.
“I think that in the present situation, the Ministry will not be able to solve these great problems of mines; maybe it's a start, but if we do not have a clear vision for our projects, it's unlikely that we will achieve results,” said Sayed Zaman Hashimi, a legal expert in the mining industry.
Seventeen years ago, attempts were started to begin the extraction of minerals at the country's largest mines.
Of these, Aynak Copper Mine, Hajigak Iron Mine, Tajik and Amu Darya oilfields, and several other mines, were earmarked as key mines but little has been done to date to get these mines up and running.
Some shopkeepers at the Fazel Baig Fruits Market complained against the low price of local fruits especially apples and preference to apples imported from Iran.
They said the lack of marketing for local fruits and preference of contractors to Iranian apples hampered the local products and let the farmers financially down.
Price of seven-kilogram of locally produced apples ranged from AFN 80 to AFN 120 while the same quantity of the Iranian apples AFN 180, they said.
Mamor Jan, one of the local farmers who gathered at the market to register their complain, said last year the contractors purchased local fruits for security forces but this year apples had been imported from Iran due to which their business suffered.
He urged the president to reverse the last year order and direct concerned authorities to prefer local fruits and products needed by security forces which will help strengthen the local market.
Musafar Qoqundai, the ministry of commerce and industry spokesman, said that all the government organizations should buy the domestic fruits and implement the president order in this regards and buy the domestic products with 25 percent higher price.
The Ministry of Defense (MoD), said in the availability of domestically produced fruits no contractor has the right to import fruits.
He added if there was any kind of deal the ministry would fine the contractors.
Amid strained ties on political level mainly due to the circumstances surrounding the fight against terrorism, the Pakistani officials have informed regarding a drastic fall in Pakistan’s share in Afghan markets.
Chairman of Pakistan-Afghanistan Joint Chamber of Commerce and Industry Zubair Motiwala has told Dawn News that Pakistan’s trade with Afghanistan fell to $1.2 billion from $2.7bn in the last two years.
According to Motiwala, the drastic fall in Pakistan’s exports to Afghanistan has direct links with the penetration of India in Afghan markets as well as China which supplies products on a competitive scale.
Motiwala further added that Pakistan has been losing even the traditional markets of flour, men and women’s clothes and red meat, affecting around the 200 flour mills out of which around 100 have been closed besides the drastic fall has affected the Peshawar medical tourism.
India has been providing goods at subsidized rates to capture the market and are providing air tickets with a 75pc rebate, he told the paper.
He also added that Afghans find it easy to travel to India with cheap tickets and free multiple visas without police checks.
According to Pakistan Bureau of Statistics, exports to Afghanistan dropped to $1.271bn in FY17 from $1.437bn in FY16. Exports in the first quarter of 2017-18 stood at $319 million.
According to Dawn News, State Bank’s data showed that the imports from Afghanistan increased to $68m in FY17, compared to $40m in FY16.
Asian Development Bank (ADB) country director for Afghanistan Samuel Tumiwa has said the bank is committed in financing the Turkmenistan, Afghanistan and Pakistan (TAP) power project.
He said that the economic cooperation will also help to enhance partnerships and improve stability in the region.
The machinery of Gulbahar Textile Plant in central Kapisa province has been sold, its land partially grabbed and the building is ruined.
Pakistan-Afghanistan trade has decreased from 2.7 billion dollars to 1.2 billion dollars in less than two years, sparking concerns among businessmen from the two countries.
The Dubai exhibition proved significant for Afghanistan as contracts for over nine million dollars were signed with foreign clients, the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock said on Saturday.
Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock (MAIL) said because of its favorable weather conditions, Afghanistan is a fertile country which produces about 1.5 million tons of fresh fruit a year.