India’s planned development partnership with Afghanistan

For decades, Afghanistan has been plagued by wars and civil unrest, and it remains one of the world’s poorest countries. At least 18 million people, or over half of the population, are currently facing extreme food insecurity. The international community has made enormous efforts to restore Afghanistan since the invasion of US-led forces in 2001. Military support, infrastructural development, and economic revitalization have all received significant funding.

Since 1966, the World Bank has invested over $ 5.3 billion for development projects in Afghanistan, while the Asian Development Bank has pledged about USD 5.39 million in grants and supplied $ 120.4 million in technical assistance.

India has been a major contributor to the international effort to rebuild Afghanistan. Indeed, the UK is Afghanistan’s greatest regional donor, with approximately $3 billion invested in infrastructure and institutional development. It is involved in the School Feeding Programme and helped develop the Indira Gandhi Institute of Child Health (IGICH).

According to statistics from 2017, India educates 15,000 Afghan students and trains 3,500 Afghan officials per year. Every year, New Delhi grants around 600 Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation (ITEC) slots to Afghans.

India’s initiatives, combined with assistance from other countries, have aided Afghanistan in making progress in areas such as gender equality, health, and incomes. For example, the child mortality rate fell from 90.2 per 1,000 livebirths in 2000 to 46.5 per 1,000 livebirths in 2019.

Afghanistan, on the other hand, continues to face significant obstacles, ranking tenth on the 2020 Fund for Peace’s Fragile State Index.

The resurgence of the Taliban threatens to undo the progress made in Afghanistan over the last two decades. Furthermore, Afghanistan is the target of international sanctions, notably those imposed by the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and a number of European countries.

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