500 million euros donates Sweden to Kabul

KABUL: (MEP) – Sweden said yesterday it would increase support to Afghanistan to around half a billion euros after US-led Nato combat troops depart next year. Peninsula reported.

The government said the increase of 40 percent in development aid in the period 2015 to 2019 would be used partly to boost employment and develop the private sector in the war-ravaged nation.

The pledge of 4bn to 4.25bn kronor (around 460m to 520m euros) represents a “strong increase” on current aid levels, it said in a statement.

Decades of conflict have left Afghanistan’s economy in tatters and the country is heavily dependent on foreign aid.

Donor nations at a conference last year pledged $16 billion to prevent the country from sliding back into turmoil when foreign combat troops leave in 2014. Sweden, a non-nato member that currently has some 400 troops in Afghanistan taking part in the Alliance’s ISAF mission, pledged 8bn to 8.5bn kronor between 2015 and 2024.

However, some donors have raised concerns about wastage of some of the billions of dollars of international aid Afghanistan receives. In early July, Sweden’s neighbor Norway — one of the 10 biggest aid donors — threatened to cut its aid to Kabul over the Afghan government’s failure to implement reforms and fight corruption. Agencies

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