UN: Afghanistan needs to rebuild social and economic infrastructure

Politics Materials 4 May 2011 14:03 (UTC +04:00)

Turkmenistan, Ashgabat, May 4 / Trend H.Hasanov /

The social and economic infrastructure should be rebuilt in Afghanistan, Under-Secretary-General and Administrator of the United Nations Development Program, Helen Clark, Neytralniy Turkmenistan newspaper reported.

"Turkmenistan is taking concrete steps in this direction," Turkmen President Gurbangulu Berdimuhammedov said at a meeting with Clark. "The country assists Afghanistan in the peaceful development and restoration of the socio-economic infrastructure, which in turn has a positive effect on the region as a whole."

Turkmenistan, which possesses a positive neutrality status, borders with Afghanistan and has recently proposed to hold inter-Afghan peace talks in Ashgabat under the aegis of the UN.

Ashgabat is providing humanitarian assistance to a neighboring state and is building social infrastructure in the country. It also supplies electricity and fuel under favorable terms.

Turkmenistan undertook the implementation of a large-scale project, which will increase the export of electricity to Afghanistan by five times. The present export capacity in this area is about 325 million kilowatt-hours per year.

Turkmenenergo has selected Turkish company Lotus Proje Akaryakit Enerji Madencilik Telekomunikasyon Insaat Sanayi Taahhut ve Ticaret AS, as the contactor to the project worth $390 million.

Moreover, a large-scale project Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) is linked with this country. Experts believe this project can contribute to Afghanistan's reconstruction, as it will allow the creation of jobs and provide the country with a guaranteed income for transit.

Ashgabat and Kabul are also discussing the possibility of a project aimed at creating a new railway throughout the countries, which will become an important link in international transportation between the States of the Asian region.