'Catastrophic' economic crisis will engulf Afghanistan if urgent action not taken: UNDP

With Afghanistan in an economic crisis, the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) has warned that 97 percent of Afghans could fall below the poverty line by mid-2022 unless the country's political and economic challenges are addressed promptly

Sep 12, 2021
Image
'Catastrophic' economic crisis will engulf Afghanistan

With Afghanistan in an economic crisis, the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) has warned that 97 percent of Afghans could fall below the poverty line by mid-2022 unless the country's political and economic challenges are addressed promptly.

“We are facing a full-on development collapse on top of humanitarian and economic crises,” said Kanni Wignaraja, UN Assistant Secretary-General and UNDP Director of the Regional Bureau for Asia and the Pacific, adding: “Half of the population is already in need of humanitarian support. This analysis suggests that we are on course for rapid, catastrophic deterioration in the lives of Afghanistan’s most vulnerable people.”

According to UNDP, the disruption of Afghanistan’s trade with its major partners, the prolonged drought, the effects of Covid-19, the freeze of foreign reserves, the collapse of public finance and the increasing pressure on the banking system have contributed to a rapid rise in poverty.

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has warned of a deepening humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan, saying that half of the population needs humanitarian assistance to survive.

Guterres also has called on the international community to promptly take action to prevent a total collapse of the Afghan economy, reported ToloNews.

On Saturday, Guterres called on the international community to join him in a meeting in Geneva and pledge support for the people of Afghanistan. The meeting is scheduled for Monday, September 13.

(SAM)