The future appears uncertain for Afghanistan following its takeover by the Taliban as US-led forces withdrew from the country after 20 years of occupation. As other nations continue to evacuate their citizens, the Central Asian country has been struck by political and humanitarian crises.
Afghanistan is Ready to Buy Iranian Oil, If Tehran Paves Way for It
© AP Photo / Raheb HomavandiA gas flare on an oil production platform in the Soroush oil fields seen alongside an Iranian flag
© AP Photo / Raheb Homavandi
Trade with Afghanistan is currently complicated for many companies due to it being run by the Taliban* since the middle of August. The latter is an organisation deemed a terrorist group in many countries and any money that go their way might be treated as "terrorist funding" by authorities.
Afghanistan is ready to buy oil from Iran, the chairman of Afghanistan's Chamber of Commerce and Investment (ACCI), Tawakal Ahmadyar, has stated. The moment came during a video conference between ACCI officials and Iranian commercial attaché Ebrahim Hosseini. The participants also discussed general trade issues between the two countries.
Kabul is currently struggling to resolve its ongoing issue with petroleum shortages and hopes that Tehran will be able to led a hand. Yet, for this to happen, Iran will have to help its neighbour in resolving a number of issues. Kabul asked Hosseini to help Afghanistan with them.
"It is imperative for both countries to strengthen economic relations and promote trade and Afghan petroleum importers are in dire need of being provided with the required facilities by the Iranian government".
The Iranian commercial attaché vowed to help Kabul to create the conditions necessary for launching the oil trade by "eliminating the existing challenges" and building the facilities required.
It is so far unclear how Kabul plans to pay for the purchase as a major portion of the government's reserves was frozen in the US following the Taliban takeover on 16 August. Since then, no foreign state, including Iran, has officially recognised the acting Taliban government. In addition, many countries designated the Taliban as a terrorist organisation, hence any taxes and duties paid to its coffers due to trade with the country might fall into the category of terrorist funding and result in criminal charges.
Kabul has called on the world's nations, and specifically the US, to unlock Afghanistan's reserves and recognise the new government after the Taliban seized the capital and most of the country practically without a fight. The international community is still considering how to proceed with regard to Afghanistan and its Taliban government, which claims to have severed ties with terrorist groups like al-Qaeda*. So far, a plan is being considered to launch humanitarian relief efforts to help desperate Afghans.
*The Taliban and al-Qaeda are terrorist organisations banned in Russia and many other countries.