By Khalid Massoudi – Masnad Legal Consultancy, Afghanistan
According to the provisions of Afghanistan constitution, the government is committed to provide fair conditions and opportunities for private sector by encouraging, supporting and ensuring the safety of domestic and foreign enterprises as well as private investments based on the market economy. The government over the years had tried different ways to take positive steps towards the implementation of the responsibility to support domestic and foreign private enterprises and investments in the best possible way.
Amendment of private investment law to provide facilities and advantages for investors, development of policies to encourage private investment, provision of encouraging privileges for investors such as cheap electricity, loans for business development, provision of privileges for import raw materials, machinery manufacturing and reduction in income tax, are some steps that have taken to support more domestic and foreign private investments in the country.
Recently, these efforts caused the investment program of Afghanistan (Investment in Afghanistan) to be ranked first among the countries of central Asia, Russia and the Caucasus and recognized as the best program in support of domestic and foreign private investments in the annual meeting of investments that was held in UAE with attendance of 120 countries representatives of seven regions.
In the last year, Afghanistan made great achievements by attracting 1.7 billion dollars in domestic and foreign private investment derived mostly from energy generation and manufacturing plants.
Afghanistan’s Ministry of Commerce, while emphasizing the focus on further development of economic infrastructure in this country, has said that the recent economic achievements and investment opportunities in Afghanistan demonstrate the existence of more opportunities for domestic and foreign private investments in this country and have changed the economic system of Afghanistan into an open and modern system.
Also, Afghanistan’s Minister of Commerce and Industry cited that during this year the government will take more actions for the purpose of providing facilities for investment and trade, such as bringing new amendments to investment law and Income Tax law to support and encourage enterprises and investments.
Afghanistan, being ranked first as a provider of the best program in support of domestic and international investors, has the continuous collaboration of the government indicating the presence of abundant business opportunities in the country.
The unique geographical location of Afghanistan which connects South Asia with Central Asia and Europe; economy based on the market economy under the leadership of the private sector; flexible tax regime and customs tariffs; Legality of a hundred percent private ownership and no restrictions on the transfer of profits out of Afghanistan; Afghanistan’s membership in international organizations and bilateral and multilateral commercial treaties, including membership in the World Trade Organization; and the Afghan government’s commitment for full and decisive support of businesses and private domestic and foreign investments are among unmatched advantages which makes the business opportunities in Afghanistan more profitable than the majority of the world countries.