WB plans to move $1b from ARTF to key Afghan sectors

Governance & Politics

WB plans to move $1b from ARTF to key Afghan sectors

KABUL (Pajhwok): The World Bank administration has given the go-ahead to a plan for using around $1 billion in the frozen Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund (ARTF) for education, agriculture, health and family programmes in the country.

The proposal, bypassing sanctions-hit Taliban authorities, is aimed at disbursing the money through UN agencies, Reuters reported on Friday.

Citing a World Bank paper and two sources, the British media outlet said the World Bank board would debate the plan on March 1.

For the release of money to help ease the ongoing humanitarian situation in Afghanistan, donors to ARTF would have to okay the proposal

In line with the World Bank paper, the plan seeks to make available over $1 billion in ARTF resources this year, the report said.

The move is aimed at protecting the vulnerable, helping preserve human capital and key economic and social institutions and reducing the need for future humanitarian assistance.

The World Bank paper suggested the fund should be used for food security, health and education programmes in the war-hit country.

About 23 million people, or 55 percent of Afghanistan’s population, are facing extreme levels of hunger, according to the UN.

The plan suggests around $150 million to be distributed through UNICEF for stipends to more than 200,000 teachers who have not been paid for over six months.

“Another $100 million would be earmarked to improve community resilience, $150 million to $200 million for food security and $150 million for health programmes.”

PAN Monitor/mud

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