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Afghanistan

First talks with new Afghan government

German Development Minister Müller signs agreement in Kabul on continuation of German development cooperation

Development Minister Gerd Müller and the new Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

18.11.2014 |

Kabul – Prior to his meetings with the new Afghan President, Ashraf Ghani, and the government's Chief Executive Officer, Abdullah Abdullah, Development Minister Gerd Müller this afternoon (local time) concluded the government negotiations with Germany's Afghan partners in Kabul.

The Minister signed the summary record together with Omar Zakhilwal, economic advisor to the Afghan President. This paper provides the framework for future German-Afghan development cooperation.

The German Development Ministry's support for reforms and the further development of its partner country amounts to a total of 245 million euros in 2014. An additional 10 million euros are available to support the work of non-governmental organisations.

"The Afghan government itself holds the key to a stable and peaceful future," Müller said. "The top priority is to create jobs and better opportunities for the people of Afghanistan. The government needs to show resolve and play its part in paving the way. We will continue to obide by the principle that, for the support we provide, we want our partner to deliver something in return. We are helping the Afghan government to build a democratic country based on the rule of law – in return, we expect to see recognisable progress. We are pressing the Afghan government to fight corruption by enacting effective anti-corruption laws and to undertake in-depth economic reforms with a view to enhancing legal certainty and increasing domestic tax revenues. Long-term stability will only be achieved if illicit drug cultivation is stamped out – particularly, since the most recent data show an alarming all-time high in drug growing."

Müller raised these concerns in his meetings with the new Afghan President, Ashraf Ghani, and the Chief Executive Officer, Abdullah Abdullah. President Ghani and Chief Executive Officer Abdullah thanked Germany for its commitment and praised the development progress of the last decade, saying that these achievements would now have to be consolidated and expanded. Both sides agreed to continue their successful collaboration and address the development challenges of the country together.

"My talks with the new government have made me confident that President Ghani and Chief Executive Officer Abdullah will vigorously pursue the necessary reforms," Development Minister Müller said. "And, what I feel especially committed to is that the clock must not be turned back for women and girls, in particular. On the contrary! Some progress in this area is at risk. And the road to political and social equality for women is still long. I would hope that in ten years, at the end of what has been termed the Transformation Decade, we will be able to say: Today, not all may be good in Afghanistan – but a lot has changed for the better."

Minister Müller will be returning to Germany on Wednesday.

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