Aid delivery to Afghanistan ineffective: ACBAR report

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Kabul, Mar 25 (UNI) Development experts and NGOs working in Afghanistan today said the aid given for the development and reconstruction of war torn Afghanistan has been ineffective.

A new report released today by Agency Coordinating Body for Afghan Relief (ACBAR) questioned the direction and effectiveness of aid delivery systems in Afghanistan calling for a complete overhaul of the framework.

In its report, authored by ACBAR member Oxfam, the agency called for a rethink of the aid strategy in terms of effectiveness, delivery, impact coordination and outreach.

According to the report, the US military spends 100 million dollars per day in Afghanistan whereas the total donor spending of all donors on aid in Afghanistan is seven million dollars per day.

Of the seven million dollars, as much as 40 per cent goes back to the donor countries including through tied aid, which forces buying of services and goods from the donor country or through consultant salaries, the report said.

International consultants cost between 250,000 to 500,000 dollars per year and costs of keeping and using them in Afghanistan were rising with growing insecurity, it added.

This was in comparison to the salaries of the middle class Afghans who were paid in the vicinity of 1000 dollars per year, the report claimed.

Oxfam also criticised the focus on short term quick impact high visibility projects which have squeezed out long term capacity building sustainable projects. Without multi-year funding, most recipients of aid were forced to do short term projects, it said.

Though recent months witnessed scrutiny on the performance of the Afghan government including on corruption and mis-governance, there was hardly any scrutiny of the donor approach and impact.

While those countries bringing the money rarely liked to be scrutinised, the wastage of money in Afghanistan was a misuse of both tax payers money of the donor countries as well as a disservice to a country brutalised by decades of war, the report concluded.

UNI XC RJ HS1729

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