Germany to spend 20 million euros for Afghanistan jobs program

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KABUL (TCA) — Afghanistan’s Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development last week said that Germany was set to inject nearly 20 million euros into Afghanistan’s National Employment Program, TOLOnews agency reported.

The ministry’s officials stated that in addition to Germany’s aid, the ministry also plans to invest $20 million into the development projects that will be established in Afghan villages.

“The 20 million euros will be spent on funding the employment projects in 1396 (the new solar year), this will help some citizens find long term and short term jobs,” said Akbar Rustami, spokesman for the ministry.

Commenting on this news, the Afghan labor union said the government cannot resolve the problem of unemployment in the country by providing short term jobs and stressed the need for the implementation of major projects in the country to boost economic growth and job opportunities.

“These programs which are announced by the ministry of urban development and rural rehabilitation are for the short term, the villagers who are hired on these jobs again become jobless once the projects are complete,” said Maruf Qaderi, head of the labor union.

Germany’s move comes as more than 1.2 million first-time asylum seekers were registered in EU member states in 2016.

In a report issued on March 16, the European Union’s statistical agency Eurostat said the majority of asylum seekers were from Syria, Afghanistan, and Iraq, RFE/RL reported.

The total for 2016 was down by about 50,000 from 2015.

Still, the figure was higher than the 562,700 registered asylum seekers in 2014.

Eurostat said 334,800 first-time asylum seekers came from Syria, 183,000 from Afghanistan, and 127,000 from Iraq.

About 60 percent (722,300) were registered in Germany.

Sergey Kwan

TCA