Karzai urges Germany to invest in mine sector


KABUL (PAN): President Hamid Karzai on Thursday said his country needed foreign investment in many sectors and urged Germany to encourage its companies, a presidential statement said.

Karzai made the call at a meeting with German Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development Dirk Niebel, in Kabul the statement issued from the Presidential Palace said.

200 firms interested in Afghan mining sector


KABUL (PAN): Nearly 200 international firms have shown their interest to invest in Afghanistan's mines, especially in the Hajigak iron ore deposit, said the mines minister on Wednesday.

Speaking to reporters here, Wahidullah Shahrani announced to tender the Afghan-Tajik oil block in early 2011 and the smaller Kashquri oil block and Shiberghan gas block in September.

In Ghazni, last gasps of copper industry


GHAZNI CITY (PAN): Many people of southern Ghazni province once worked as coppersmiths, setting up dozens of shops in the provincial capital. But now this craftsmanship is on the verge of disappearance.

Concern at the fast declining industry in the province, coppersmiths and residents cite the constantly rising utensil imports as a principal reason for declining demand for local copper products.

Chinese involvement in Afghanistan growing


By Lalit K Jha May 4, 2010 - 11:43

WASHINGTON (PAN): As China's involvement grows in Afghanistan, should the White House request Beijing to send its troops to this war-torn country, a US Congressional report has said.

Baghlan truckers rally against bribery

PUL-I-KHUMRI (PAN): Truck drivers on Monday staged a protest demonstration against extortions by private armed militias and Afghan Local Police (ALP) personnel in northern Baghlan province.

About 200 truck drivers took part in the protest in Pul-i-Khumri, the provincial capital, accusing mines department officials of demanding bribes from them. They warned of permanently parking their vehicles if their problem was not resolved.

Mine revenue ends up in Taliban pockets


FAIZABAD (PAN): Officials in northeastern Badakhshan province say individuals continue excavating the tourmaline mine illegally, with its income and profit going into the pockets of insurgents.

Badakhshan is a mountainous region, which is rich in mineral mines of precious stones such as ruby, tourmaline and azure.

Watchdog demands arrest of gem smugglers


KABUL (PAN): The Civil Society Natural Resource Monitoring Network (CSNRMN) on Saturday asked the government to prevent illegal mining of precious and semi-precious stones and arrest those involved in smuggling gems out of the country.

Javed Noorani, a member of the network, told a press conference in Kabul that illegal mining and smuggling of gems continued unchecked at a huge scale in a large number of provinces.

Coal mines illegal extraction inflicts losses on national exchequer


KABUL (PAN): Afghanistan has rich in natural resources and coal mines but due to government negligence its illegal and nonprofessional excavation causes huge losses to national exchequer, mining experts say.

Coal mines in country can be found and have a chain in different layers of Hindu Kush Mountains, starting from Badakhshan to Takhar, Baghlan, Samangan, Bamyan and Sar-i-Pul provinces with ending at Sabzak mine in Herat province.

Illegal mines’ excavation, smuggling of precious stones continue in Helmand


LASHKARGAH (PAN): The southern Helmand has around 16 different mines of precious and semi-precious stones but growing lawlessness has provided a renewed impetus to its illegal excavation and smuggling, an official said.

Esmatullah Shams, provincial mines department head, said the province was extremely rich in natural resources such as uranium, magnate, carbonate, stucco, zing, plumbum, quicksilver, alabaster and others.  

Mahmud Karzai, Haseen Fahim yet to return due banks’ loan


KABUL (PAN):  After passing four long years, as many as $11 million loan paid to Afghan Investment Company (AIC) by four banks--- with guarantors Mahmud Karzai, Haseen Fahim and Mirwais Azizi--- to the Ghori Cement Factory, however, the due loan with interests have yet to be returned to the banks.    

In the backdrop of signed contract, the $11 million loan should have been returned to the banks within five years in three months installments along with its interests amounting to $7 million by December 2013.  


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