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Harakat Held Joint Meeting with CEO and Chairpersons of Chambers in Afghanistan

Date: 2020-04-13

On Monday, April – the 13th, Noor Alam Hakimyar, CEO of Harakat, hosted a joint meeting with Mr. Sayed Zaman Hashimi, CEO of Afghanistan Chamber of Commerce and Investment (ACCI), Mr. Abdul Qadir Bahman, CEO of International Chamber of Commerce - Afghanistan (ICC-Afg), Ms. Afsana Rahami, Chairperson of Afghanistan Women’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry (AWCCI), Mr. Rahimullah Samandar, CEO of Afghanistan Chamber of Industries and Mines (ACIM), Mr. Obaidullah Yousufzai, CEO of Agriculture Chamber of Commerce (ACC) and Mr. Hassan Sepahi, Chairman of the Afghanistan Shopkeepers Chamber (ASC). The aim of the meeting was to discuss the impact that COVID-19 is making on Afghan businesses, private sector’s role in combating COVID-19 and private sector’s role in ascertaining the fate of Inter-Ministerial Private Sector Executive Committee (PriSEC) in the current context.

 A collective voice was reinforced by all that while combating the COVID-19 pandemic should be the top priority for the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan (GIRoA) and International Community (IC), however, they should support private sector in parallel to fighting the COVID-19. The disruption brought by COVID-19 pandemic is causing severe loses to businesses and tens of thousands of people will be jobless and future tax revenue of GIRoA will be hugely impacted if private sector further suffers and do not get any support.

All the participants thanked Harakat for initiating this meeting and agreed on below points:

  1. The participants will develop a joint strategy as a roadmap and evidence backed paper to GIRoA to attract their attention. The same will be presented to the IC because we know the constraints that GIRoA is facing at this time is difficult. The joint strategy paper will have a fair representation of all Chambers. It was agreed that all the chambers will send their initial individual strategies to Harakat very soon. Harakat will compile, strengthen it, if necessary, and then will be jointly presented to GIRoA officials and IC representatives in Kabul.
  2. The prices were an important platform, and it paved the way for the private sector and GIRoA to work collectively and to deliver the reforms identified in the Private Sector Development – National Priority Plan (PSD-NPP). Therefore, the Chambers should work together to re-activate the PriSEC very soon. It was suggested that it will be better than the PriSEC is chaired by Mr. Mohammad Yousuf Ghazanfar, the President's extraordinary representative on economic, business, and poverty reduction, and that the Working Groups be chaired by respected Ministers.  It was also suggested the PriSEC Secretariat remains under the Ministry of Economy.
  3. They also voiced for the restructuring of the PriSEC and giving a greater role to the Private Sector. It was decided that Harakat will put together a paper on streamlining the PriSEC to make it more effective before meeting with Mr. Ghazanfar.