On Friday, the United States unveiled relaxation of a wide range of financial and commercial transactions in Afghanistan. The “General Licence 20”- new relations allow “financial institutions, international organizations, non-governmental organizations, and private sector companies to engage in wide-ranging transactions and activities in the country while complying with the US sanctions.
The US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said, “The United States took the decision today to facilitate a broad range of commercial activities in Afghanistan to benefit the people there”. He specifically clarified that the sanctions on the Taliban regime are still in place. In his official statement, he stated that today’s action will facilitate private businesses and aid organizations to work with Afghanistan’s governing institutions.
According to him, the new measures could have a wide impact on Afghanistan’s economy, affecting areas such as personal and commercial banking, infrastructure development and maintenance, commercial trade, transportation system safety and maintenance, and telecommunications and information transactions.
A scholar of South Asian Affairs at Wilson Centre, Washington said, “This new licence announcement has gotten buried in Ukraine news, but it’s big”. The US said they stand with the people of Afghanistan as they are working towards rebuilding their economy.