Afghanistan civil servants graduate from University of Central Asia

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KABUL (TCA) — The University of Central Asia (UCA) celebrated the achievements of 22 Afghan civil servants who were awarded an Executive Masters in Economic Policy (EMEP) at a ceremony in Kabul, Afghanistan on 10 March. Over 40% of graduates are women. The EMEP programme was delivered by the UCA’s Institute of Public Policy and Administration (IPPA), based in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, which is part of the Graduate School of Development.

Offered to Afghan civil servants, the EMEP programme is supported by Canada’s International Development Research Centre, the Aga Khan Foundation Canada, and the Ministry of Finance of Afghanistan.

Speaking as Chief Guest at the graduation, Dr. Mohammad Humayon Qayoumi, Minister of Finance of Afghanistan said, “By your successful completion of the Master’s programme you have gained knowledge, skills, and ability to devise solutions to problems that are loosely structured and not solved by a single answer…Use what you have learned in your daily work in government.”

EMEP was offered over a twelve-month period, divided into three semesters. Two were spent in Bishkek, and one at UCA’s residential campus in Naryn, Kyrgyzstan. It is comprised of 12 courses that deal with two components. The first has courses in policy analysis and economics. The second component builds student competence in specialised areas such as agriculture, extractive industries, climate change and poverty, and labour markets and human resources development.

Ms. Naheed Serabi, Deputy Minister of Finance (Policy) noted that “These graduates will be the next generation of policy makers and policy analysts, and there is already a visible difference in the quality of work of those who have completed the programme.”

Addressing the gathering, Mrs. Nurjehan Mawani, the Aga Khan Development Network’s Diplomatic Representative to Afghanistan, observed that “The programme’s focus on economic policies is well-targeted. Policies that foster enabling conditions for private sector development and promote quality employment are critical.”

Dr. Bohdan Krawchenko, Dean of the Graduate School of Development, remarked that “EMEP is a challenging programme tailored to the realities and needs of Afghanistan, and is built around real-world examples and case studies. IPPA’s work in Afghanistan commenced in 2011 and we are really at the start of our engagement with the country. There are new initiatives on the horizon, and an interesting journey ahead of us. Join us on this road.”

The graduation ceremony was attended by the representatives of the Afghan government, the diplomatic community, representatives of international and national development organisations, and the families of the graduates.

Sergey Kwan

TCA