21 August 2017

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Sunday July 9, 2017

Kabul (BNA) The technical study and design contract of new Salang tunnel has been signed between the Ministry of Public Works (MoPW) and an Australian Company (SMEC) worth 32 million USD here at the Chief Executive Office.
The new tunnel would be 12 kilometers long from Doshakh area of Baghlan province to Awlang area of Parwan. Public Works Minister Mahmood Baleegh told reporters after signing the technical studies and design contract with SMEC, an Australian company, said the project would be completed in two and half years at a cost of $32 million donated by Japan.
He said the current tunnel was built by the Soviet Union more than 50 years ago and suffered huge damages. Thus there is a serious need for construction of an alternative tunnel to bypass the Hindukosh mountainous areas, he added. The director of the Asian Development Bank said the project would bring transportation and business facilitates, adding the tunnel would connect the central Asia with south Asian countries. Meanwhile hinting to construction of the new tunnel, Japan ambassador to Kabul said his country would remain committed to rehabilitation of Afghanistan, adding the country has so far donated 6.2 billion USD to Afghanistan and would fund 53 percent of Salang tunnel.
Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Dr. Abdullah said: “It is my pleasure to see a project that will help the country economy, transportation and transit trade being launched,” He said the construction of new Salang tunnel was part of the national unity government’s commitment as the current transit routes were not enough to fulfill all transportation, traffic and trading requirements. CEO said work on Dushi-Bamyan road was underway and primary steps for the construction of Khawak highway have been also taken. Pointing to Ministry of Public Works and the Australian company distribution, Dr. Abdullah called for quality works of the project. He also thanked the Asian Development Bank and the Japan for funding the project.

Saturday July 8, 2017

Kabul (BNA) Turkmenistan has completed evaluation of the much-awaited Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline and is preparing for building the Afghan section of the pipeline, announced chairman of the project, Muhummet Murat Amanov, on Thursday at the “TAPI and Its Impacts on the Economic Development of Afghanistan” meeting. Amanov said Türkmengaz, the national gas company of Turkmenistan, has completed the engineering and design phase of the project and has started laying the pipeline.
“The pipe laying phase will start in Afghanistan within a year. Currently we are assessing the routes of the gas pipeline including issues related to earthquakes, along with social and environmental impact studies (in Afghanistan). Most of our work needs to be done this year and should be finalized by October or November,” said Amanov. TAPI is an important linchpin in the realization of the New Silk Road in the arena of energy where Afghanistan again plays a central role in connecting energy-rich Central Asia to energy-deficient South Asia. The idea of the USD 7.6bn (initial estimate of the cost) pipeline first originated in 1995 when the Turkmenistan and Pakistan leaders signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). The project aims to export up to 33 billion cubic meters (bcm) of natural gas per year through a proposed 1,800-kilomter pipeline from the Dauletabad gas field in Turkmenistan along the highway through Herat, Helmand and Kandahar in Afghanistan, to Quetta and Multan in Pakistan, and on to Fazilka in India. The pipeline could become a recipe for long-term stability in Afghanistan by generating revenue for the Afghan government and creating jobs for Afghans in general.
Envisaged to be completed by 2018, the pipeline is expected to produce USD 400mn a year in revenues for Afghanistan. It will further provide an alternative energy source for Afghanistan, which is currently depending on Iran for fuel. In addition to the economic benefits that the project will bring in its wake to the participating countries, it has serious geopolitical implications as well that will further bolster Afghanistan’s ties with its neighbors, particularly Pakistan. Pakistan and Afghanistan’s tensions over trade and terrorism are profound. The TAPI project will promote positive political and economic interaction between the two neighboring nations by providing an avenue for mutually-beneficial economic cooperation.
Reporters’ Desk

Saturday July 8, 2017

Kabul (BNA) The first ever factory producing oxygen and nitrogen has started operations in eastern Nangarhar province of Afghanistan with a local doctor investing hundreds of thousands of dollars to locally produce the elements and create jobs for the local residents.
The provincial government said the factory will provide enough oxygen and nitrogen to respond to the needs of the four provinces in eastern parts of the country. The founder of the factory, Dr. Nasimullah Darman, said the factory has been established with an investment of around $350,000 from his personal funding. Dr. Darman further added that the factory will respond to the needs of the local market and hospitals in Laghman, Kunar, Nuristan, and Nangarhar provinces. He said the factory has a capacity of producing around 250 capsules of oxygen and nitrogen over a period of 24 hours. According to Dr. Darman, the factory will pave the way for creating jobs for up to 250 people on direct and indirect basis. In the meantime, the provincial public health officials said the oxygen and nitrogen will be produced in accordance with the international standards.

Friday July 7, 2017
Kabul (BNA) With a cost of 39 million Afghanis the construction work of two water canals has started in northern Balkh province yesterday.
Sarajuddin Mehraban head of agriculture, irrigation and livestock department in Balkh said BNA reporter, with construction of the mentioned canals 6000 families will be benefited (gain access to drinking water) and over 1260 hectares of lands will be irrigated.
Both canals at the length of more than 10 km to be constructed within the next one year from budget of ministry of agriculture, irrigation and livestock.
Khair Mohammad resident of Katakhail village, Balkh district said, with construction of the canals the problems of agriculture water shortage for irrigation largely to be solved.

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