FILE: Half of Afghan Population Relies on Humanitarian Aids

Kabul, Afghanistan – United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) says more than half of Afghanistan’s population is dependent on life-saving humanitarian assistance and protection, according to sources, suggesting one in two people do not know where their next meal come from.

This came at a time ever-Increasing poverty and political crisis in Afghanistan add up to the number of beggars across the country, forcing desperate families on Kabul streets.

The commission said it provides direct aid to the vulnerable people in Afghanistan, including provision of healthy centers and water projects that are of the primary needs of the citizens.

“Afghanistan’s people cannot be left behind. We provide direct aid to the most vulnerable,” UNHCR Canberra wrote in a tweet. “We build schools, health centers, water projects and roads to provide conditions for the voluntary return of refugees and displaced people when they feel ready.”

While the report suggests highly alarming struggle for basic needs of Afghan people – seeing an ever-increasing poverty across the country – the Ministry of Economy said its data show otherwise, arguing its plan could potentially protect the country from economic downfall.  

“Keeping food and fuel prices constant, keeping exchange rates constant, increasing imports and exports, attracting domestic and foreign investment, creating domestic and foreign projects are among the programs of the Ministry of Economy to reduce poverty in the country,” said Abdul Latif Nazari, Deputy Minister of Economy, as TOLOnews quoted.

A number of Kabul residents say the increase in ongoing poverty and lack of employment have doubled their challenges, as many of them rely on daily incomes to run a family of five members on average.

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“My economic situation is very bad. I have a car, but it has been twenty days that I haven’t worked,” said a resident of Kabul.

Meanwhile, economists called on the Islamic Emirate government to consider strategic plan that could provide job opportunities and help increase the country’s overall economy.

“The government should make clear and specific plans on the infrastructure programs that can create jobs, creating a mixed economic system and growth and development platforms to establish a direct relationship between foreign policy and economic policy,” said Shaker Yaghoubi, an economist.

The latest report from the National Bureau of Statistics shows that Afghanistan’s per capita income has dropped from $500 a year to $350 and food aid from UN agencies has not alleviated poverty in the country.

Ongoing political crisis since the takeover last August has “hit hard” private sectors in Afghanistan, where businesses were halted and put to uncertainty, according to a latest survey conducted by the World Bank.

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