Leadership Council for Human Rights

~ Feet in the mud, head in the sky ~

Friday, October 19, 2007

Afghanistan hosts first regional trade conference in decades

The relatively stable Afghan city of Herat on Wednesday hosted the first day of a Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) conference, the kind of regional gathering that has not taken place in the country for decades, Reuters reported.

The ECO was founded by Iran, Turkey, and Pakistan in 1985. The conference is expected to address investment, export of oil and gas and trade relations.

The event marks an important step in Afghanistan’s development, as it has not been able to secure major local or foreign investment due to a number of factors including the Taliban-led insurgency, a lack of infrastructure, and widespread corruption.

The Afghan government recently abolished taxes on exported goods in an effort to bolster trade.

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