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Afghan economy suffers from drought and uncertainty –World Bank

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Afghan economy suffers from drought and uncertainty –World Bank

Economy

“It is supposed to recover slightly in 2019 due to improved weather conditions but growth is expected to remain fragile.

“In 2018, the Afghan economy only grew an estimated one per cent due to ongoing violence and drought, which was the slowest growth rate since 2001,’’ the report said.

A severe drought in 2018 had a strong negative impact on agricultural production.

Wheat production is estimated to have declined by around 24 per cent from the five-year average, while milk production declined by 30 per cent.

In Afghanistan, almost 80 per cent of the population is engaged in agriculture for their livelihoods.

At the same time, business and investor confidence deteriorated significantly due to the uncertainty around international security assistance, intensified conflict and ongoing talks about peace with the Taliban.

As a result, the World Bank also estimates that poverty has deepened.

In an earlier report for 2016 to 2017, the World Bank reported that out of an estimated 30 million Afghans, some 54.5 per cent were living below the poverty line.

Economic growth is estimated to recover in 2019 to 2.5 per cent.

“This, however, would depend on a number of other developments, including sustained improvement in security and the continuation of political stability after the presidential elections in September, the World Bank anticipated.

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