Taliban Humvee in Kabul, August 2021. Wikipedia
China invests millions in oil production in Afghanistan
While Western governments are trying to ignore or isolate the Taliban regime, which was able to take power in Afghanistan in August 2021, an Afghan-Chinese deal worth millions was concluded. China wants to develop an extensive oil field in Afghanistan. The Afghan mining minister and Chinese representatives signed a corresponding agreement in Kabul.
Accordingly, oil deposits are to be developed in three northern provinces in the Amu Darya Basin. The Chinese company CAPEIC plans to invest 150 million US dollars as a first move. The joint project aims to create around 3 000 jobs. The Taliban government will initially receive a 20 percent share of the profits. It is the largest planned economic project since they came to power.
Afghanistan has large deposits of raw materials that have hardly been tapped in the past four decades due to the ongoing military conflict. According to estimates, the total value could amount to one trillion dollars (around 940 billion euros) and more.
So far, however, the infrastructure such as roads, rails and sufficient power capacity has been missing to exploit the deposits on a large scale.
Afghanistan’s landlocked location and rugged landscape make mining and export difficult. However, the cooperation project with the Chinese should give Afghanistan access to the Chinese Silk Road transport network, which is intended to promote economic integration between China and the rest of the Eurasian-African landmass.
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