"On behalf of the Government of Canada, I am pleased to announce that Canada has pledged $250 million in new aid to Afghanistan over the next two years, an amount which surpasses last year's commitment," said Minister Whelan. "This funding pledge clearly demonstrates Canada's ongoing commitment to the Afghan people."
This new funding will support four areas which have been identified by the Afghan Government as priorities. CIDA-supported programming will be focused in regions outside of Kabul and in sectors in which Canada has a demonstrated capacity and leadership. They are:
- supporting rural livelihoods and social
protection, which will include ongoing humanitarian assistance, improving
food security and supporting community-driven development;
- managing natural resources, with an
emphasis on agriculture;
- strengthening security and the rule
of law through peacebuilding, legal and judicial reform, strengthening
democracy and by becoming the lead donor on demining;
- providing continued support to the Government of Afghanistan to help solidify its role in its own nation-building and reconstruction efforts.
The Government's pledge was tabled today by the Canadian delegation at the Afghanistan Development Forum taking place in Brussels. The Forum provides an opportunity for donors to pledge their support in light of the Afghan Government's current plans and priorities and long-term funding requirements.
The funding for this initiative was provided for in the February 2003 federal budget and is therefore built into the existing fiscal framework.
Office of the Minister for International Cooperation
Telephone: (819) 953-6238
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Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA)
Telephone: (819) 953-6534