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The economy of Afghanistan has steadily improved in the last decade due to the return of large number of wealthy
expats An expatriate (often shortened to expat) is a person residing in a country other than their native country. In common usage, the term often refers to professionals, skilled workers, or artists taking positions outside their home country, either ...
, the modernization of the nation's agriculture sector, and the establishment of more trade routes with neighboring and regional countries. The billions of dollars in international assistance that came from expats and outside investors saw this increase when there was more political reliability after
NATO The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO, ; french: Organisation du traité de l'Atlantique nord, ), also called the North Atlantic Alliance, is an intergovernmental military alliance between 30 European and North American countries. The ...
became involved in
Afghanistan Afghanistan (; Pashto/Dari: , Pashto: , Dari: ), officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country at the crossroads of Central and South Asia. Afghanistan is bordered by Pakistan to the east and south; Iran to the west ...
's reconstruction. The nation's
GDP Gross domestic product (GDP) is a monetary measure of the market value of all the final goods and services produced in a specific time period. GDP (nominal) per capita does not, however, reflect differences in the cost of living and the inflation ...
stands these days at about $70 billion with an exchange rate of $20 billion (2017), and the
GDP per capita Lists of countries by GDP per capita list the countries in the world by their gross domestic product (GDP) per capita. The lists may be based on nominal or purchasing power parity GDP. Gross national income (GNI) per capita accounts for inflows and ...
is about $2,000. It imports over $6 billion worth of goods but exports about $1 billion worth of legal products, mainly
fruit In botany, a fruit is the seed-bearing structure in flowering plants (also known as angiosperms) formed from the ovary after flowering. Fruits are the means by which angiosperms disseminate seeds. Edible fruits, in particular, have propagated ...
s and nuts. Despite holding over $1 trillion in proven untapped mineral deposits, Afghanistan remains one of the
least developed countries#REDIRECT Least developed countries#REDIRECT Least developed countries {{Redirect category shell, {{R from move ...
{{Redirect category shell, {{R from move ...
in the world. Its unemployment rate is over 23% and about half of its
population In biology, a population is a number of all the organisms of the same group or species who live in a particular geographical area and are capable of interbreeding. The area of a sexual population is the area where inter-breeding is possible bet ...
lives below the
poverty line Poverty Thresholds for 2013 The poverty threshold, poverty limit, poverty line or breadline, is the minimum level of income deemed adequate in a particular country. Poverty line is usually calculated by finding the total cost of all the essentia ...
. Many of the unemployed men join the foreign-funded militant groups or the world of
crime In ordinary language, a crime is an unlawful act punishable by a state or other authority. The term ''crime'' does not, in modern criminal law, have any simple and universally accepted definition,Farmer, Lindsay: "Crime, definitions of", in C ...
, particularly as
smugglers Smuggling is the illegal transportation of objects, substances, information or people, such as out of a house or buildings, into a prison, or across an international border, in violation of applicable laws or other regulations. There are various ...
. The
Afghan governmentThe politics of Afghanistan consists of the cabinet of ministers, provincial governors and the national assembly, with a president serving as the head of state, head of government and commander-in-chief of the Afghan Armed Forces. The nation is curre ...
has long sought foreign investment in order to improve Afghanistan's economy.


Economic history

In the early modern period under the rule of kings
Abdur Rahman Khan Abdur Rahman Khan ( ps, عبدالرحمن خان) (between 1840 and 1844October 1, 1901) was Emir of Afghanistan from 1880 to 1901. He is known for uniting the country after years of internal fighting and negotiation of the Durand Line Agreement ...
(1880–1901) and
Habibullah Khan Habibullah Khan (June 3, 1872 – February 20, 1919) was the Emir of Afghanistan from 1901 until 1919. He was the eldest son of the Emir Abdur Rahman Khan, whom he succeeded by right of primogeniture in October 1901. His grandfather was Mohammad ...
(1901–1919), a great deal of Afghan commerce was centrally controlled by the Afghan government. The Afghan monarchs were eager to develop the stature of government and the country's military capability, and so attempted to raise money by the imposition of state monopolies on the sale of commodities and high taxes. This slowed the long-term development of Afghanistan during that period. Western technologies and manufacturing methods were slowly introduced during these eras at the command of the Afghan ruler, but in general only according to the logistical requirements of the growing army. An emphasis was placed on the manufacture of weapons and other military material. This process was in the hands of a small number of Western experts invited to Kabul by the Afghan kings. Otherwise, it was not possible for outsiders, particularly westerners, to set up large-scale enterprises in Afghanistan during that period. The first prominent plan to develop Afghanistan's economy in modern times was the
Helmand Valley Authority 300 px, The Kajakai Dam on the Helmand River, one of the major dams controlled by the HAVA The Helmand and Arghandab Valley Authority (HAVA) based in Lashkar Gah, Afghanistan, originally named the Helmand Valley Authority (HVA) until its expan ...
project of 1952, modeled on the
Tennessee Valley Authority The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) is a federally owned corporation in the United States created by congressional charter on May 18, 1933, to provide navigation, flood control, electricity generation, fertilizer manufacturing, and economic dev ...
in the
United States The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US), or America, is a country primarily located in North America. It consists of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, 326 India ...
, which was expected to be of primary economic importance.Report on Development of Helmand Valley, Afghanistan, 1956
Tudor Engineering Company
Glenn Foster, an American contractor working in Afghanistan in the 1950s, stated this about the Afghan people: Afghanistan began facing severe economic hardships during the 1970s when neighboring Pakistan, under
Zulfikar Ali Bhutto Zulfikar Ali Bhutto ( sd, ذوالفقار علي ڀٽو; ur, ; 5 January 1928 – 4 April 1979) was a Pakistani barrister and politician who served as the 9th Prime Minister of Pakistan from 1973 to 1977, and prior to that as the fourth Preside ...

Zulfikar Ali Bhutto
, began closing the Pakistan-Afghanistan
border crossing Border control is the measures taken by a state or a bloc of states to monitor its borders and regulate the movement of people, animals, and goods across the border. History States and rulers have always regarded the ability to determine who en ...
s. This move resulted in Afghanistan increasing political and economic ties with its northern neighbor, the powerful
Soviet Union The Soviet Union,. officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. (USSR),. was a federal socialist state in Northern Eurasia that existed from 1922 to 1991. Nominally a union of multiple national Soviet republics, in practice its governmen ...
of that time. The 1979 Soviet invasion and ensuing
civil war A civil war, also known as an intrastate war in polemology, is a war between organized groups within the same state or country. The aim of one side may be to take control of the country or a region, to achieve independence for a region or t ...
destroyed much of the country's limited infrastructure, and disrupted normal patterns of economic activity. Eventually, Afghanistan went from a
traditional economy A traditional economic system is based on customs, history and time-honored beliefs. A traditional economy is an economic system in which traditions, customs, and beliefs help shape the goods and services the economy produces, as well as the rule ...
to a
centrally planned economy A planned economy is a type of economic system where investment, production and the allocation of capital goods takes place according to economy-wide economic plans and production plans. A planned economy may use centralized, decentralized, partic ...
up until 2002 when it was replaced by a
free market economy A market economy is an economic system in which the decisions regarding investment, production and distribution are guided by the price signals created by the forces of supply and demand. The major characteristic of a market economy is the existe ...
. Gross domestic product has fallen substantially since the 1980s due to disruption of trade and transport as well as loss of labor and capital. Continuing internal strife severely hampered domestic efforts to rebuild the nation or provide ways for the international community to help. According to the
International Monetary Fund The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is an international financial institution, headquartered in Washington, D.C., consisting of 190 countries working to foster global monetary cooperation, secure financial stability, facilitate international ...

International Monetary Fund
, the Afghan economy grew 20% in the
fiscal year#REDIRECT Fiscal year#REDIRECT Fiscal year {{Redirect category shell, 1= {{R from other capitalisation ...
{{Redirect category shell, 1= {{R from other capitalisation ...
ending in March 2004, after expanding 30% in the previous 12 months. The growth was attributed to international aid and to the end of
drought A drought is an event of prolonged shortages in the water supply, whether atmospheric (below-average precipitation), surface water or ground water. A drought can last for months or years, or may be declared after as few as 15 days. It can have a ...

drought
s. An estimated $100 billion of aid had entered the nation from 2002 to 2021. A GDP of $4 billion in fiscal year 2003 was recalculated by the IMF to $6.1 billion, after adding proceeds from opium production. Mean graduate pay was $0.56 per
man-hour A man-hour or person-hour is the amount of work performed by the average worker in one hour. It is used for estimation of the total amount of uninterrupted labor required to perform a task. For example, researching and writing a college paper migh ...
in 2010. The country expects to be self sufficient in
wheat Wheat is a grass widely cultivated for its seed, a cereal grain which is a worldwide staple food. The many species of wheat together make up the genus ''Triticum''; the most widely grown is common wheat (''T. aestivum''). The archaeological rec ...

wheat
,
rice Rice is the seed of the grass species ''Oryza sativa'' (Asian rice) or less commonly ''Oryza glaberrima'' (African rice). The name wild rice is usually used for species of the genera ''Zizania'' and ''Porteresia'', both wild and domesticated, a ...
,
poultry Poultry () are domesticated birds kept by humans for their eggs, their meat or their feathers. These birds are most typically members of the superorder Galloanserae (fowl), especially the order Galliformes (which includes chickens, quails, and ...
and
dairy A dairy is a business enterprise established for the harvesting or processing (or both) of animal milk – mostly from cows or buffaloes, but also from goats, sheep, horses, or camels – for human consumption. A dairy is typically located on a de ...

dairy
production by 2026.


Agriculture and livestock

Afghanistan produced in 2018: * 3.6 million tons of
wheat Wheat is a grass widely cultivated for its seed, a cereal grain which is a worldwide staple food. The many species of wheat together make up the genus ''Triticum''; the most widely grown is common wheat (''T. aestivum''). The archaeological rec ...

wheat
; * 984 thousand tons of
grape A grape is a fruit, botanically a berry, of the deciduous woody vines of the flowering plant genus ''Vitis''. Grapes can be eaten fresh as table grapes or they can be used for making wine, jam, grape juice, jelly, grape seed extract, raisins, ...

grape
(18th largest world producer); * 615 thousand tons of
potato The potato is a root vegetable native to the Americas, a starchy tuber of the plant ''Solanum tuberosum'', and the plant itself is a perennial in the nightshade family, Solanaceae. Wild potato species, originating in modern-day Peru, can be fou ...
; * 591 thousand tons of
vegetable Vegetables are parts of plants that are consumed by humans or other animals as food. The original meaning is still commonly used and is applied to plants collectively to refer to all edible plant matter, including the flowers, fruits, stems, l ...
; * 381 thousand tons of
watermelon ''Watermelon'' (''Citrullus lanatus'') is a flowering plant species of the Cucurbitaceae family. A scrambling and trailing vine-like plant, it was originally domesticated in Africa. It is a highly cultivated fruit worldwide, with more than 1, ...

watermelon
; * 352 thousand tons of
rice Rice is the seed of the grass species ''Oryza sativa'' (Asian rice) or less commonly ''Oryza glaberrima'' (African rice). The name wild rice is usually used for species of the genera ''Zizania'' and ''Porteresia'', both wild and domesticated, a ...
; * 329 thousand tons of
melon Canary melon and cantaloupe ">cantaloupe.html" style="text-decoration: none;"class="mw-redirect" title="Canary melon and cantaloupe">Canary melon and cantaloupe A melon is any of various plants of the family Cucurbitaceae with sweet, edi ...
; * 217 thousand tons of
apple An apple is an edible fruit produced by an apple tree (''Malus domestica''). Apple trees are cultivated worldwide and are the most widely grown species in the genus ''Malus''. The tree originated in Central Asia, where its wild ancestor, ''Ma ...
; * 150 thousand tons of
onion The onion (''Allium cepa'' L., from Latin ''cepa'' "onion"), also known as the bulb onion or common onion, is a vegetable that is the most widely cultivated species of the genus ''Allium''. The shallot is a botanical variety of the onion. Until ...
; * 106 thousand tons of
maize Maize ( ; ''Zea mays'' subsp. ''mays'', from es, maíz after tnq, mahiz), also known as corn (North American and Australian English), is a cereal grain first domesticated by indigenous peoples in southern Mexico about 10,000 years ago. The leaf ...
; * 56 thousand tons of
barley Barley (''Hordeum vulgare''), a member of the grass family, is a major cereal grain grown in temperate climates globally. It was one of the first cultivated grains, particularly in Eurasia as early as 10,000 years ago. Barley has been used as ani ...

barley
; * 47 thousand tons of
peach The peach (''Prunus persica'') is a deciduous tree native to the region of Northwest China between the Tarim Basin and the north slopes of the Kunlun Mountains, where it was first domesticated and cultivated. It bears edible juicy fruits with va ...
; In addition to smaller productions of other agricultural products. Afghanistan currently produces roughly 1.5 million tons of fresh fruits annually, which could be increased significantly. It is known for producing some of the finest
fruit In botany, a fruit is the seed-bearing structure in flowering plants (also known as angiosperms) formed from the ovary after flowering. Fruits are the means by which angiosperms disseminate seeds. Edible fruits, in particular, have propagated ...
s, especially
pomegranate The pomegranate (''Punica granatum'') is a fruit-bearing deciduous shrub in the family Lythraceae, subfamily Punicoideae, that grows between tall. The pomegranate was originally described throughout the Mediterranean region. It was introduce ...

pomegranate
s and
grape A grape is a fruit, botanically a berry, of the deciduous woody vines of the flowering plant genus ''Vitis''. Grapes can be eaten fresh as table grapes or they can be used for making wine, jam, grape juice, jelly, grape seed extract, raisins, ...

grape
s as well as sweet
melon Canary melon and cantaloupe ">cantaloupe.html" style="text-decoration: none;"class="mw-redirect" title="Canary melon and cantaloupe">Canary melon and cantaloupe A melon is any of various plants of the family Cucurbitaceae with sweet, edi ...
s and
mulberries ''Morus'', a genus of flowering plants in the family Moraceae, consists of diverse species of deciduous trees commonly known as mulberries, growing wild and under cultivation in many temperate world regions. Generally, the plant has three main ...
. Other fruits widely and historically grown are
apricot An apricot (, ) is a fruit, or the tree that bears the fruit, of several species in the genus ''Prunus'' (stone fruits). Usually, an apricot is from the species ''P. armeniaca'', but the fruits of the other species in ''Prunus'' sect. ''Armeniac ...

apricot
s,
apple An apple is an edible fruit produced by an apple tree (''Malus domestica''). Apple trees are cultivated worldwide and are the most widely grown species in the genus ''Malus''. The tree originated in Central Asia, where its wild ancestor, ''Ma ...
s,
figs ''Ficus'' ( or ) is a genus of about 850 species of woody trees, shrubs, vines, epiphytes and hemiepiphytes in the family Moraceae. Collectively known as fig trees or figs, they are native throughout the tropics with a few species extending into ...
,
peach The peach (''Prunus persica'') is a deciduous tree native to the region of Northwest China between the Tarim Basin and the north slopes of the Kunlun Mountains, where it was first domesticated and cultivated. It bears edible juicy fruits with va ...
es and
cherries A cherry is the fruit of many plants of the genus ''Prunus'', and is a fleshy drupe (stone fruit). Commercial cherries are obtained from cultivars of several species, such as the sweet ''Prunus avium'' and the sour ''Prunus cerasus''. The n ...
. Building and using
greenhouse '' (giant Amazon waterlilies) in a large greenhouse at the Saint Petersburg Botanical Garden. A greenhouse (also called a glasshouse, or, if with sufficient heating, a hothouse) is a structure with walls and roof made chiefly of transparent materi ...
s is a fast-growing industry in the country. The northern and western Afghan provinces are known for
pistachio The pistachio (, ''Pistacia vera''), a member of the cashew family, is a small tree originating from Central Asia and the Middle East. The tree produces seeds that are widely consumed as food. ''Pistacia vera'' often is confused with other speci ...
cultivation. In recent years, farmers in the southern provinces have also begun cultivating pistachios. Provinces in the east of the country are famous for
pine nut Pine nuts, also called piñón (), pinoli (), or pignoli, are the edible seeds of pines (family Pinaceae, genus ''Pinus''). About 20 species of pine produce seeds large enough to be worth harvesting; in other pines, the seeds are also edible, but a ...
s. The northern and central provinces are also famous for
almond The almond (''Prunus dulcis'', syn. ''Prunus amygdalus'') is a species of tree native to Iran and surrounding countries but widely cultivated elsewhere. The almond is also the name of the edible and widely cultivated seed of this tree. Within th ...

almond
s and
walnut A walnut is the nut of any tree of the genus ''Juglans'' (Family Juglandaceae), particularly the Persian or English walnut, ''Juglans regia''. A walnut is the edible seed of a drupe, and thus not a true botanical nut. It is commonly consumed ...

walnut
s. The
Bamyan Province Bamyan Province ( prs, ولایت بامیان) is one of the thirty-four provinces of Afghanistan, located in the central highlands of the country. Its terrain is mountainous or semi-mountainous, at the western end of the Hindu Kush mountains concu ...
in central Afghanistan is known for growing superior quality
potato The potato is a root vegetable native to the Americas, a starchy tuber of the plant ''Solanum tuberosum'', and the plant itself is a perennial in the nightshade family, Solanaceae. Wild potato species, originating in modern-day Peru, can be fou ...
es, which produced 370,000 tons in 2020.
Nangarhar#REDIRECT Nangarhar Province {{R from other capitalisation ...
is famous for
lemon The lemon, ''Citrus limon'', is a species of small evergreen tree in the flowering plant family Rutaceae, native to South Asia, primarily Northeast India. The tree's ellipsoidal yellow fruit is used for culinary and non-culinary purposes thr ...

lemon
s,
orange Orange most often refers to: *Orange (colour), occurs between red and yellow in the visible spectrum *Orange (fruit), the fruit of the tree species '' Citrus'' × ''sinensis'' ** Orange blossom, its fragrant flower *Some other citrus or citrus-li ...
s,
olive The olive, known by the botanical name ''Olea europaea'', meaning "European olive", is a species of small tree in the family Oleaceae, found traditionally in the Mediterranean Basin. The species is cultivated in all the countries of the Mediter ...
s,
peanut The peanut, also known as the groundnut, goober (US), pindar (US) or monkey nut (UK), and taxonomically classified as ''Arachis hypogaea'', is a legume crop grown mainly for its edible seeds. It is widely grown in the tropics and subtropics, b ...
s and
dates Date or dates may refer to: *Date (fruit), the fruit of the date palm (''Phoenix dactylifera'') Social activity *Dating, a form of courtship involving social activity, with the aim of assessing a potential partner **Group date, wherein a group ...
. Cultivation of these products are now spreading to other provinces of the country. The government even planted
banana A banana is an elongated, edible fruit – botanically a berry – produced by several kinds of large herbaceous flowering plants in the genus ''Musa''. In some countries, bananas used for cooking may be called "plantains", distinguishi ...
trees in
Helmand Province Helmand ( ; Pashto/Dari: هلمند), also known as Hillmand or Helman and, in ancient times, as Hermand and Hethumand, is one of the 34 provinces of Afghanistan, in the south of the country. It is the largest province by area, covering area. Th ...
to see if they grow and produce bananas.
Wheat Wheat is a grass widely cultivated for its seed, a cereal grain which is a worldwide staple food. The many species of wheat together make up the genus ''Triticum''; the most widely grown is common wheat (''T. aestivum''). The archaeological rec ...

Wheat
and
cereal A cereal is any grass cultivated (grown) for the edible components of its grain (botanically, a type of fruit called a caryopsis), composed of the endosperm, germ, and bran. The term may also refer to the resulting grain itself (specifically "c ...
production is Afghanistan's traditional agricultural mainstay. National wheat production in 2015 was 5 million tons.. Afghanistan is nearing self-sufficiency in grain production. It requires an additional 1 million ton of wheat to become self-sufficient, which is predicted to be accomplished in 2020. The overall agricultural production sometimes declines following droughts.
Livestock Livestock is commonly defined as domesticated animals raised in an agricultural setting to produce labor and commodities such as meat, eggs, milk, fur, leather, and wool. The term is sometimes used to refer solely to those that are bred for consu ...
in Afghanistan mainly include
cattle Cattle, or cows (female) and bulls (male), are the most common type of large domesticated ungulates. They are a prominent modern member of the subfamily Bovinae, are the most widespread species of the genus ''Bos'', and are most commonly clas ...

cattle
,
sheep Sheep (''Ovis aries'') are quadrupedal, ruminant mammals typically kept as livestock. Like all ruminants, sheep are members of the order Artiodactyla, the even-toed ungulates. Although the name ''sheep'' applies to many species in the genus ''Ov ...

sheep
, and
goat The domestic goat or simply goat (''Capra aegagrus hircus'') is a subspecies of ''C. aegagrus'' domesticated from the wild goat of Southwest Asia and Eastern Europe. The goat is a member of the animal family Bovidae and the subfamily Caprinae ...

goat
s. Building and using modern poultry farms is also a fast-growing industry. The availability of land suitable for grazing has traditionally made
animal husbandry Animal husbandry is the branch of agriculture concerned with animals that are raised for meat, fibre, milk, eggs, or other products. It includes day-to-day care, selective breeding and the raising of livestock. Husbandry has a long history, start ...
an important part of the economy. There are two main types of animal husbandry: sedentary, practiced by farmers who raise both animals and crops; and nomadic, practiced by animal herders known as Kochis. Natural pastures cover some but are being overgrazed. The northern regions around
Mazar-i-Sharif Mazār-i-Sharīf (Dari and ps, مزار شریف; ), also called Mazār-e Sharīf, or just Mazar, is the fourth-largest city of Afghanistan, with a 2015 UN–Habitat population estimate 427,600. It is the capital of Balkh province and is linked by ...
and
Maymana Maymana (Persian/Uzbek/Pashto: میمنه) is the capital city of Faryab Province in northwestern Afghanistan, near the Turkmenistan border. It is approximately northwest of the country's capital Kabul, and is located on the Maymana River, which ...
were the home range for about six million
karakul sheep Karakul or Qaraqul (named after Qorako‘l, a city in Bukhara Province in Uzbekistan) is a breed of domestic sheep which originated in Central Asia. Some archaeological evidence points to Karakul sheep being raised there continuously since 1400 BC ...
in the late 1990s. Most flocks move to the highlands in the summer to pastures in the north. Arable land in Afghanistan was reported to be around 8 million hectares. Wheat production had stood at about 5 million tonnes in 2015, nurseries held 119,000 hectares of land, and grape production is at 615,000 tonnes.
Almond The almond (''Prunus dulcis'', syn. ''Prunus amygdalus'') is a species of tree native to Iran and surrounding countries but widely cultivated elsewhere. The almond is also the name of the edible and widely cultivated seed of this tree. Within th ...

Almond
production has jumped to 56,000 tons and cotton to 45,000 tonnes. In 2019, it was reported that about 10,000 acres of land in Afghanistan is used to cultivate
saffron Saffron (pronounced or ) is a spice derived from the flower of ''Crocus sativus'', commonly known as the "saffron crocus". The vivid crimson stigma and styles, called threads, are collected and dried for use mainly as a seasoning and colouri ...
. According to the
World Bank The World Bank is an international financial institution that provides loans and grants to the governments of low- and middle-income countries for the purpose of pursuing capital projects. It comprises two institutions: the International Bank for ...
's report published in April 2019, Afghanistan's economy suffered from the consequences of a severe drought that affected the agriculture production in 2018. While the wheat production declined by 24%, milk production declined by 30%.


Fishing

The country has a growing number of
reservoirs A reservoir (; from French ''réservoir'' ) is most commonly an enlarged natural or artificial lake created using a dam to store water. Reservoirs can be created in a number of ways, including controlling a watercourse that drains an existing ...
,
lake A lake is an area filled with water, localized in a basin, surrounded by land, apart from any river or other outlet that serves to feed or drain the lake. Lakes lie on land and are not part of the ocean, although like the much larger oceans, ...
s,
pond A pond is an area filled with water, either natural or artificial, that is smaller than a lake. Ponds may arise naturally in floodplains as part of a river system or can simply be an isolated depression (such as a kettle, vernal pool, or prairie p ...
s,
rivers A river is a natural flowing watercourse, usually freshwater, flowing towards an ocean, sea, lake or another river. In some cases a river flows into the ground and becomes dry at the end of its course without reaching another body of water. Sm ...
and streams, which make it a suitable climate for
fish farming upright=1.3, Salmon farming in the sea (mariculture) at Loch Ainort, Isle of Skye, Scotland Fish farming or pisciculture involves raising fish commercially in tanks or enclosures such as fish ponds, usually for food. It is different from aqu ...
. Fishing takes place in the lakes and rivers, particularly in the Kunar, Amu and
Helmand Helmand ( ; Pashto/Dari: هلمند), also known as Hillmand or Helman and, in ancient times, as Hermand and Hethumand, is one of the 34 provinces of Afghanistan, in the south of the country. It is the largest province by area, covering area. Th ...
rivers.
Fish Fish are aquatic, craniate, gill-bearing animals that lack limbs with digits. They form a sister group to the tunicates, together forming the olfactores. Included in this definition are the living hagfish, lampreys, and cartilaginous and bony ...
constitute a smaller part of the today because fish farmers are unable to produce enough fish to keep up with the demands of customers. Most fish and
seafood Seafood is any form of sea life regarded as food by humans, prominently including fish and shellfish. Shellfish include various species of molluscs (e.g. bivalve molluscs such as clams, oysters, and mussels and cephalopods such as octopus and sq ...
are imported from neighboring Pakistan, Iran, and the
United Arab Emirates The United Arab Emirates (UAE; Arabic: الإمارات العربية المتحدة '), sometimes simply called the Emirates (Arabic: الإمارات '), is a country in Western Asia located at the eastern end of the Arabian Peninsula. It b ...
. There are hundreds of fish farms throughout the country and the largest one is at the Qargha, which supplies fish eggs to the other fish farms. Fish farming has also been launched in the
Afghan-India Friendship Dam Afghan-India Friendship Dam (AIFD), formerly Salma Dam, is a hydroelectric and irrigation dam project located on the Hari River in Chishti Sharif District of Herat Province in western Afghanistan. Since this project is funded and constructed by the ...
.


Forestry

According to a 2010 report, only about 2.1% (or 1,350,000 Hectare, ha) of Afghanistan is forested. Its timber has been greatly depleted, and since the mid-1980s, only about 3% of the land area has been forested, mainly in the east. Significant stands of trees have been destroyed by the ravages of the war in the late 20th century. Exploitation has been hampered by insecurity and access roads. Moreover, the distribution of the forest is uneven, and most of the remaining woodland is only found in the Kunar Province, Kunar, Nuristan Province, Nuristan and the Paktia Province, Paktia regions in the east of the country. Some steps have been taken in recent years in planting trees in the urban areas across Afghanistan. Even the Taliban spiritual leader has recently called for planting more trees. The natural forests in Afghanistan are mainly of two types: dense forests of oak trees,
walnut A walnut is the nut of any tree of the genus ''Juglans'' (Family Juglandaceae), particularly the Persian or English walnut, ''Juglans regia''. A walnut is the edible seed of a drupe, and thus not a true botanical nut. It is commonly consumed ...

walnut
trees, and many other species of nuts that grow in the southeast, and on the northern and northeastern slopes of the Sulaiman ranges; and sparsely distributed short trees and shrubs on all other slopes of the Hindu Kush. The dense forests of the southeast cover only 2.7% of the country. Roundwood production in 2003 was 3,148,000 cubic metres, with 44% used for fuel.


Trade and industry

Afghanistan's geographical location makes the country economically secured. This could play a major role in the future. Even its trade with other countries is steadily increasing with the establishment of more international transportation routes. One of these trade routes is the Lapis Lazuli corridor, which connects Afghanistan with Turkmenistan and ultimately ends somewhere in Europe. Other such trade routes connect Afghanistan with neighboring Iran, Pakistan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. The country also has direct trade with India via Airway_(aviation)#Air_corridor, air corridor. Its rail transport in Afghanistan, rail system is slowly expanding to connect Central Asia with Pakistan and Iran. The Afghanistan–Pakistan Transit Trade Agreement (APTTA) allows Afghan and Pakistani cargo trucks to transit goods within both nations. This revised US-sponsored APTTA agreement also allows Afghan trucks to transport exports to India via Pakistan up to the Wagah crossing point. There are at least nine main land ports around Afghanistan. They include Abu Nasar Farahi in Farah Province, Aqina in Faryab Province, Hairatan in Balkh Province, Islam Qala in Herat Province, Sher Khan Bandar in Kunduz Province, Torghundi in Herat Province, Torkham in Nangarhar Province, Wesh–Chaman border crossing, Spin Boldak in Kandahar Province, and Zaranj in Nimruz Province. Some of these ports are mismanaged due to political corruption, which sometimes result in huge financial losses to the traders and transport companies. Afghanistan has legal access to two major seaports in Pakistan, the Gwadar Port in Balochistan and the Port Qasim in Sindh. Afghanistan also has legal access to two major seaports in Iran, which include the Bandar Abbas and the Chabahar Port in the south of the country. Trade in goods smuggled into Pakistan once constituted a major source of revenue for Afghanistan. Many of the goods that were smuggled into Pakistan have originally entered Afghanistan from Pakistan, where they fell under the 1965 APTTA. This permitted goods bound for Afghanistan to transit through Pakistani seaports free of duty (economics), duty. Once in Afghanistan, the goods were often immediately smuggled back into Pakistan over the porous border that the two countries share, often with the help of corrupt officials. Additionally, items declared as Afghanistan-bound were often prematurely offloaded from trucks and smuggled into Pakistani markets without paying requisite duty fees. This resulted in the creation of a thriving black market, with much of the illegal trading occurring openly, as was common in Peshawar's bustling Karkhano Market, which was widely regarded as a smuggler's bazaar. Afghanistan is endowed with a wealth of natural resources, including extensive deposits of natural gas, petroleum, coal, marble, gold, copper, chromite, talc, barites, sulfur, lead, zinc, iron ore, salt, precious and semi-precious stones, and many rare earth elements. In 2006, a U.S. Geological Survey estimated that Afghanistan has as much as of natural gas, of oil and condensate reserves.Eurasianet.org - Eurasia Insight
''Afghanistan's Energy Future and its Potential Implications''
/ref> According to a 2007 assessment, Afghanistan has significant amounts of undiscovered non-fuel mineral resources. Geologists also found indications of abundant deposits of colored stones and gemstones, including emerald, ruby, sapphire, garnet, lapis, kunzite, spinel, tourmaline and peridot. In 2010, U.S. The Pentagon, Pentagon officials along with American geologists have revealed the discovery of nearly $1 trillion in untapped mineral deposits in Afghanistan.U.S. Identifies Vast Riches of Minerals in Afghanistan
''The New York Times'' by James Risen. June 13, 2010.
A memo from the Pentagon stated that Afghanistan could become the "Saudi Arabia of lithium". Some believe that the untapped minerals are worth up to $3 trillion. The Khanashin carbonatites in the
Helmand Province Helmand ( ; Pashto/Dari: هلمند), also known as Hillmand or Helman and, in ancient times, as Hermand and Hethumand, is one of the 34 provinces of Afghanistan, in the south of the country. It is the largest province by area, covering area. Th ...
of the country have an estimated 1 million metric tonnes of rare earth elements. Afghanistan signed a copper deal with China (Metallurgical Corp. of China Ltd.) in 2008, which is to a large-scale project that involves the investment of $2.8 billion by China and an annual income of about $400 million to the Afghan government. The country's Ainak copper mine, located in Logar Province, is one of the biggest in the world. It is estimated to hold at least 11 million tonnes or US$33 billion worth of copper. On October 5, 2018 in Washington, D.C., Afghan officials signed a 30 year contract with investment group Centar and its operating company, Afghan Gold and Minerals Co., to explore and develop a copper mining operation in Balkhab District in Sar-e Pol Province and to explore and develop a gold mining operation in Badakhshan Province. The copper contract involved a $56 million investment and the gold contract a $22 million investment. The country's other recently announced treasure is the Hajigak iron ore mine, located 130 miles west of Kabul and is believed to hold an estimated 1.8 billion to 2 billion metric tons of the mineral used to make steel. AFISCO, an Indian consortium of seven companies, led by the Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL), and Canada's Kilo Goldmines Ltd are expected to jointly invest $14.6 billion in developing the Hajigak iron mine. The country has several coal mines but need to be modernized., McClatchy News, Factory, coal mine show connections matter most in Afghan business, November 10, 2010 Afghanistan's important resource in the past has been natural gas, which was first tapped in 1967. During the 1980s, gas sales accounted for $300 million a year in export revenues (56% of the total). About 90% of these exports went to the
Soviet Union The Soviet Union,. officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. (USSR),. was a federal socialist state in Northern Eurasia that existed from 1922 to 1991. Nominally a union of multiple national Soviet republics, in practice its governmen ...
to pay for imports and debts. However, during the withdrawal of Soviet troops in 1989, the natural gas fields were capped to prevent sabotage by criminals. Gas production has dropped from a high of 8.2 million cubic metres per day in the 1980s to a low of about 600,000 cubic meters in 2001. Production of natural gas was restored during the Karzai administration in 2010. In December 2011, Afghanistan signed an oil exploration contract with China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) for the development of three oil fields along the Amu Darya river. CNPC began Afghan oil production in late October 2012, with extracting 1.5 million barrels of oil annually.China's CNPC begins oil production in Afghanistan
, by Hamid Shalizi. October 21, 2012.


Economic development and recovery

Afghanistan embarked on a modest economic development program in the 1930s. The government founded banks; introduced paper money; established a university; expanded primary, secondary, and technical schools; and sent students abroad for education. In 1952 it created the
Helmand Valley Authority 300 px, The Kajakai Dam on the Helmand River, one of the major dams controlled by the HAVA The Helmand and Arghandab Valley Authority (HAVA) based in Lashkar Gah, Afghanistan, originally named the Helmand Valley Authority (HVA) until its expan ...
to manage the economic development of the Helmand and Arghandab valleys through irrigation and land development, a scheme which remains one of the country's most important capital resources. In 1956, the government promulgated the first in a long series of ambitious development plans. By the late 1970s, these had achieved only mixed results due to flaws in the planning process as well as inadequate funding and a shortage of the skilled managers and technicians needed for implementation. Da Afghanistan Bank serves as the central bank of the nation. The Afghan afghani, "Afghani" (AFN) is the national currency, which has an exchange rate of nearly 70 Afghanis to United States dollar, 1 US dollar. There are over 16 different banks operating in the country, including Afghanistan International Bank, Kabul Bank, Azizi Bank, Pashtany Bank, Standard Chartered Bank, and First MicroFinance Bank-Afghanistan, First Micro Finance Bank. Cash is still widely used for most transactions. A new law on private investment provides three to seven-year tax holidays to eligible companies and a four-year exemption from exports tariffs and duties. According to a UN report in 2007, Afghanistan has received over $3.3 billion from its expatriate community in 2006. UN officials familiar with the issue said remittances to Afghanistan could have been more if the banking regulations are more convenient. Additionally, improvements to the business-enabling environment have resulted in more than $1.5 billion in Telecommunication, telecom investment and created more than 100,000 jobs since 2003. Afghanistan is a member of World Trade Organization, South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation, SAARC, Economic Cooperation Organization, ECO, Economy of the OIC, OIC, and has an observer status in the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, SCO. It seeks to complete the so-called ''Silk Road, New Silk Road'' trade project, which is aimed to connecting South Asia with Central Asia and the Middle East. This way Afghanistan will be able to collect large fees from trade passing through the country, including from the Trans-Afghanistan Pipeline. Foreign Minister Zalmai Rassoul has stated that the "goal is to achieve an Afghan economy whose growth is based on trade, private enterprise and investment". Experts believe that this will revolutionize the economy of the region. As part of an attempt to modernize the city and boost the economy, a number of new high rise buildings are under construction by various developers. Some of the national development projects include the New Kabul City next to the capital, the Aino Mena in Kandahar, and the Ghazi Amanullah Khan City east of Jalalabad. Similar development projects are also found in Herat in the west, Mazar-e-Sharif in the north and in other cities. Afghan rug, Afghan handwoven rugs are one of the most popular products for exportation. Other products include hand crafted antique replicas as well as leather and furs. Afghanistan is the third largest exporter of cashmere wool, cashmere. Afghanistan has no textile industry. The country imports roughly $500 million of textile goods from other countries. Afghanistan also lacks major international companies. This may explain why the country has high unemployment rate. As a competitor of the Coca-Cola Company, the PepsiCo, Pepsi-Cola Company is said to be establishing itself in Afghanistan. This not only promotes foreign investment but also makes the country less dependent on imports from neighboring countries and helps provide employment opportunity to many Afghans. In February 2019, it was reported that the
World Bank The World Bank is an international financial institution that provides loans and grants to the governments of low- and middle-income countries for the purpose of pursuing capital projects. It comprises two institutions: the International Bank for ...
granted $235 million to the government of Afghanistan for the country's development and growth. The acting Minister of Finance Mohammad Qayoumi, Humayon Qayoumi said that out of the total amount granted, $75 million will finance "the Tackling Afghanistan's Government HRM (Human Resource Management) and Institutional Reforms (TAGHIR) project, which will strengthen the capacity of selected line ministries. The grant also includes 25 million U.S. dollars from IDA (International Development Association) and 50 million U.S. dollars from ARTF (Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund)." GDP growth in Afghanistan dropped to 1.8% in 2018 as compared to 2.9% in 2017, partially because of drought. It then recovered to 2.5% in 2019, and is predicted to rise to 3.0% in 2020.


Tourism

Tourism in Afghanistan was at its peak in 1977. Many tourists from around the world came to visit Afghanistan, including from as far away as Europe and North America. All of that ended with the start of the April 1978 Saur Revolution. However, it is again gradually increasing despite the insecurity. Each year about 20,000 foreign tourists visit Afghanistan. Tourists should avoid areas where armed criminals operate in the name of Taliban. The country has four international airports, including the Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul; the Mazar-e Sharif International Airport, Maulana Jalaluddin Balkhi International Airport in
Mazar-i-Sharif Mazār-i-Sharīf (Dari and ps, مزار شریف; ), also called Mazār-e Sharīf, or just Mazar, is the fourth-largest city of Afghanistan, with a 2015 UN–Habitat population estimate 427,600. It is the capital of Balkh province and is linked by ...
; the Herat International Airport, Khwaja Abdullah Ansari International Airport in Herat; and the Ahmad Shah Baba International Airport in Kandahar. It also has several smaller List of airports in Afghanistan, airports throughout the country. The city of Kabul has many guest houses and hotels, including the Serena Hotels, Serena Hotel, the Hotel Inter-Continental Kabul, and the Safi Landmark Hotel. Small number of guest houses and hotels are also available in other cities such Kandahar, Herat, Mazar-i-Sharif, etc. The following are some notable places in Afghanistan that tourists find worth visiting: *Bamyan **Band-e Amir National Park in
Bamyan Province Bamyan Province ( prs, ولایت بامیان) is one of the thirty-four provinces of Afghanistan, located in the central highlands of the country. Its terrain is mountainous or semi-mountainous, at the western end of the Hindu Kush mountains concu ...
**Site of Buddhas of Bamyan *Fayzabad, Badakhshan *Kabul **Arg (Kabul), Arg (Presidential Palace) **Chihil Sutun **Darulaman (Darul Aman Palace, Tajbeg Palace, National Assembly (Afghanistan), Afghan Parliament, National Museum of Afghanistan, etc.) **Gardens of Babur **Paghman *Kandahar **Aino Mina (provides safe guesthouses/hotels and tour guides) **Shrine of the Cloak **Shrine of Baba Wali **Mausoleum of Mirwais Hotak *Herat **Great Mosque of Herat **Herat Citadel *Mazar-i-Sharif **Blue Mosque (Mazar-i-Sharif), Great Blue Mosque **Hairatan


National accounts

''The majority of the following information is taken from, or adapted from The World Factbook''
GDP Gross domestic product (GDP) is a monetary measure of the market value of all the final goods and services produced in a specific time period. GDP (nominal) per capita does not, however, reflect differences in the cost of living and the inflation ...
: purchasing power parity $69.45 billion, with an exchange rate at $20.24 billion (2017 estimate) GDP - real growth rate: * 2.7% (2017) GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $2,000 (2016) GDP - composition by sector: *''agriculture'': 23% *''industry'': 21.1% *''services'': 55.9% note: data excludes opium production Population below poverty line: * 54.5% (2017) Household income or consumption by percentage share: *''lowest 10%'': 3.8% *''highest 10%'': 24% (2008) Inflation rate (consumer prices): 5% (2017)
''country comparison to the world:'' 171 Labor force: 8.478 million (2017)
''country comparison to the world:'' 61 Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 44.3%, industry 18.1%, services 37.6% (2017) Unemployment rate: 23.9% (2017)
''country comparison to the world:'' 194 Budget: *''revenues'': 2.276 billion (2017) *''expenditures'': 5.328 billion Industries: small-scale production of textiles, soap, furniture, shoes, fertilizer, apparel, food, food-products, non-alcoholic beverages, mineral water, cement; Afghan carpet, handwoven carpets; natural gas, coal, copper Electricity - production: 1.211 billion kWh (2016 est.)
''country comparison to the world:'' 146 Electricity - production by source: *''fossil fuel'': 45% of total installed capacity (2016) *''hydro'': 52% of total installed capacity (2017) *''nuclear'': 0% of total installed capacity (2017) *''other'': 4% of total installed capacity (2017) Electricity - consumption: 5.526 billion kWh (2016 est.)
''country comparison to the world:'' 119 Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2016 est.) Electricity - imports: 4.4 billion kWh (2016 est.) Oil - production: (2012)
''country comparison to the world:'' 210 Oil - consumption: (2016)
''country comparison to the world:'' 117 Oil - proved reserves: (2006) Natural gas - production: 164.2 million m³ (2017) Natural gas - consumption: 164.2 million m³ (2017) Natural gas - proved reserves: 49.55 billion m³ (2018) Agriculture - products: wheat, fruits, nuts, wool, mutton, sheepskins, lambskins, poppies Exports: $784 million (2017)
''country comparison to the world:'' 171 Exports - commodities: fruits and nuts, Afghan rug, handwoven carpets, wool, cotton, hide (skin), hides and pelts, precious and semi-precious gems, and medical herbs Exports - partners: India 56.5%, Pakistan 29.6% (2017) Imports: $7.616 billion (2017) Imports - commodities: machinery and other capital goods, food, textiles, petroleum products Imports - partners: China 21%, Iran 20.5%, Pakistan 11.8%, Kazakhstan 11%, Uzbekistan 6.8%, Malaysia 5.3% (2017) Debt - external: $2.84 billion total (2011) Current account balance: -$743.9 million (2011)
''country comparison to the world:'' 132 Currency: Afghan afghani, Afghani (AFN) Exchange rates: Afghanis (AFN) per US dollar - 68.3 = $1 *''57.25 (2013)'' *''46.45 (2010)'' Fiscal year: 21 December - 20 December


Energy in Afghanistan

Energy in Afghanistan is provided by hydropower followed by fossil fuel and solar power. According to Da Afghanistan Breshna Sherkat (DABS), approximately 35% of
Afghanistan Afghanistan (; Pashto/Dari: , Pashto: , Dari: ), officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country at the crossroads of Central and South Asia. Afghanistan is bordered by Pakistan to the east and south; Iran to the west ...
's demographics of Afghanistan, population has access to electricity. This covers the major List of cities in Afghanistan, cities in the country. Many rural areas do not have access to 24-hour electricity but this should change after the major CASA-1000 project is completed. Afghanistan currently generates over 600 megawatts (Watt#Megawatt, MW) of electricity from its several List of power stations in Afghanistan, hydroelectric plants as well as using fossil fuel and solar panels. Over 670 MW more is imported from neighboring Iran, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Turkmenistan. Due to the large influx of expatriate, expats from neighboring Afghans in Pakistan, Pakistan and Afghans in Iran, Iran, Afghanistan may require as much as 7,000 MW of electricity in the coming years. The Afghan National Development Strategy has identified alternative energy, such as wind power, wind and solar energy, as a high value power source to develop. As a result, a number of solar and wind farms have been established, with more currently under development.Private firms to build 30-MW solar park in Afghanistan
/ref>ECOsys Implements the Hybrid Solar and Wind Power Plant in Herat Province-Afghanistan
/ref>Solar powered hatchery in Balkh to increase poultry production
/ref>


See also

*Afghanistan Accession to World Trade Organization


References

*


External links


The World Bank In Afghanistan
*Asian Development Bank
Afghanistan and ADBFAO in AfghanistanAfghan Agriculture
(information resource site maintained by UC Davis and USDA) {{DEFAULTSORT:Economy Of Afghanistan Economy of Afghanistan, World Trade Organization member economies