Kabul, Afghanistan – Twelve Afghan agribusinesses will display the finest fresh and dried fruits, nuts, juices, and vegetables at a high-profile trade event in Almaty, Kazakhstan from October 31 to November 2. The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) will support the 12 agribusinesses. "WorldFood Kazakhstan" will provide an opportunity for buyers to connect with Afghan sellers and explore business relationships in the lucrative Central Asian market. More than 5,000 regional buyers are expected at the event. The Central Asian market is strategically important for Afghan agribusinesses. Earlier this year, the Afghan government announced its hopes of increasing air cargo shipments to 10 metric tons weekly through the Afghanistan-Kazakhstan air corridor. Kazakhstan imported $2.1 million in agricultural goods from Afghanistan in 2017.
"WorldFood Kazakhstan" comes after two USAID-funded events in India in July and September, generating $163 million in agreements for Afghan agricultural products. Afghan fresh fruits, figs, saffron, almonds, figs, raisins, pistachios, and walnuts were among some of the products contracted during the events.
USAID Mission Director Herbie Smith said, “We are working with international buyers and investors to link them with Afghan private sector partners such as processors and traders to ensure that more Afghan farmers can sell their products for good prices, feed their families, and educate their children.”
Agriculture is at the heart of Afghanistan’s economy and provided over $700 million in annual exports in 2017. USAID’s agriculture programs are focused on increasing exports. Since October 1, 2018, USAID agriculture programs facilitated over $270 million in export deals for Afghan sellers.
All of USAID’s agriculture programs cooperate and coordinate closely with the Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock to ensure program activities align with the Government of Afghanistan’s National Comprehensive Agriculture Development Priority Program. USAID agricultural assistance is designed to address the growing problem of unemployment, to create sustainable jobs, alleviate poverty, and drive agriculture-led economic growth.
With almost $17 billion spent on development programs in Afghanistan since 2002, USAID provides the largest bilateral civilian assistance program to Afghanistan. USAID partners with the government and people of Afghanistan to ensure economic growth led by the country’s private sector, to establish a democratic and capable state governed by the rule of law, and to provide basic health and education services for all Afghans.
Development Outreach and Communication Office USAID/Afghanistan