Afghanistan Completes its Bilateral Agreements to accede the WTO
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Afghanistan’s Bilateral Agreements on Goods and Services reached its final stage:
In order to pave its way to the accession of WTO the Afghan Deputy Minister of Commerce and Industry H.E Mozammil Shinwari visited Geneva from 10-16 Feb 2014. During his visit he signed a number of protocols with the Republic of Turkey, Republic of South Korea, European Union and the separate custom territory of Taiwan.
On 10th of Feb 2014 HE Shinwari and E.U’s Ambassador Mr. Angelos PANGRATIS signed the protocol on Goods and Services in the EU Mission to WTO . Both sides welcomed signing the protocol and emphasized on further Cooperation. According to the protocol as a least Developed Country, all Afghanistan’s products (except arms) have duty free and quota free access to the EU market.
It worth mentioning that the EU is one of the main trading partner of Afghanistan, accounting for almost 9% of its exports and 12% of its imports. In 2012 the total value of EU goods exported to Afghanistan was €935 million, while imports from Afghanistan amounted to €56 million. Afghanistan mainly supplies the EU market with skins and leather products, fruits/nuts, but also electronic products, which together represent more than 50% of its exports to the EU. The main EU exports to Afghanistan are vehicles, mineral fuels, machinery and electrical equipment.
Moreover, on 12th February the Deputy Minister signed the same protocol with the Republic of Turkey in its Permanent Mission to WTO. Both sides discussed the historic and brotherly relations between the two countries and along the meeting the issue of capacity building was also discussed.
On 12th and 13th February Afghan delegation signed the protocol with South Korean Ambassador Mr. Seokyoung CHOI , and Representative of the separate custom territory of Taiwan in WTO Headquarter in Geneva accordingly.
Afghan delegation also met with accession division and discussed the finalization of the work plan for last working party meeting which is scheduled to take place before Accession. They also discussed reformation of laws .
While signing the protocols H.E Shinwari was accompanied by the Afghan Ambassador and Permanent Representative to UNOG H.E Tarzi and Mr. Abdul Kareem Malikyar Head of WTO Division, ministry of Commerce and industry.
Book of condolence opens at the Embassy and Permanent Mission of Afghanistan in Geneva
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انا لله و انا الیه راجعون
To commemorate the sorrowful demise of Marshal Mohammad Qasim Fahim the First Vice President of Afghanistan a book of condolence was put on 13 March in Embassy and Permanent Mission of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan in Geneva.
A big number of ambassadors, diplomats and official of international orgnizations registered their condolence and sympathy messages. At the same time a Fateha and Khatm e Quran was held at the Mission.
Marshal Mohammad Qasim Fahim the First vice President of Afghanistan played a significant role during the Jehad and Resistance era, in particular, he played a vital role concerning all national and international issues of the government after the Bonn Agreement. He Passed away on 10th of this month at the age of 56 in Kabul and was buried there, he was a great leader and his loss is irreversible.
Ministry of Finance Senior Officials Graduate with an Executive Master’s Degree
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On 28 February 2014, 20 senior officials from Afghanistan Ministry of Finance graduated with an Executive Master’s degree in Development of Policies and Practices (DPP) from the Graduate Institute of Geneva. The Program that was initially launched last year with the internal fund of Ministry of Finance and with the technical support of UNITAR, consisted of 3 modules that started in Abu Dhabi, continued in Istanbul and Kabul and finally completed in Geneva.
H.E Dr. Hazrat Omar Zakhilwal, Minister of Finance prior to attending the graduation ceremony, met with Ms. Sally Fegan Wyles, Executive Director of UNITAR at the UN Headquarter to sign the second edition for the implementation of Executive Master’s program for an additional 20 officials from the Ministry of Finance for the academic year of 2014-2015. The graduation ceremony that was held at the Graduate Institute of Geneva auditorium, commenced with a welcoming remark by Mr. Philippe Burrin (Director of Graduate Institute of Geneva) then, Ms. Wyles in her statement thanked H.E Mr. Zakhilwal for his commitment to improving the capacity of its employees and Mr. Tarzi for his support. Ms. Wyles also congratulated all the graduates for successfully completing their program, particularly the participants from Afghanistan who had shown an excellent performance in addition to their full time employment in the Ministry.
H.E Dr. Nanguyalai Tarzi, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Afghanistan to the United Nations Office, while hosting a reception for the participants at the Embassy a day before the graduation ceremony, stressed on the significance of such training programs on employee’s development and enhancement for an effective service delivery.
H.E Dr. Zakhilwal invited as a chief guest, congratulated the graduates and provided an update on the development and progress made so far in the Ministry of Finance. The graduation ceremony was followed by a cocktail reception.
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