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Peace to help improve our activities: Businesswomen

Peace to help improve our activities: Businesswomen

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Oct 10, 2020 - 19:35

 MAZAR-I-SHARIF (Pajhwok): Businesswomen in northern Balkh province say the war has negatively impacted their businesses which can develop if peace is achieved in the country.

They say insecurity, lack of market for their products and resources are damaging womeninfo-icon businesses which can flourish and more opportunities can be generated if peace is established in the country.

The Balkh Chamber of Commerce and Industry also acknowledged that insecurity had badly impacted business activities in the province.

Fareshta Akbari, in-charge of private sweet making factory, hoped that intra-Afghan talks would end successfully with positive result, which will bring about positive change in people’s lives.

She said growing violence and crimes in Mazar-i-Sharif had brought down their business activities and investment opportunities by 50 percent.

She warned if the situation remained the same, women would cease their business activities in the city.

“In the past, we had links with districts and most of our products went to districts, but the security situation deteriorated to the extent that we cannot supply our products even inside the city,” said Mrs. Akbari.

She said he had lost hope in the government for improving the security situation, but pinned hope on the on-going peace talks which she said if ended positively, the situation would improve.

Zainab, another businesswoman, has a small machine of carpet waving in the Sajadia township.

She told Pajhwok Afghan News that her sales declined by 50 percent in recent times.

Besides other causes, she termed the ongoing conflict a huge hurdle in the way of her work’s development.

“We are incurring huge loss due to the growing insecurity. In the past, raw materials were supplied to us from districts, but now the roads are insecure and the Talibaninfo-icon also extort the supply trucks, which has affected our businesses,” she said.

Zainab said besides facing difficulties to get raw materials, they also faced problems in search for market for their products.

She said in the past many companies were interested to purchase their products and transfer them to other provinces, but now the market was down and carpet buyers had disappeared. She also hoped if peace was established, their businesses would flourish again.

Zainab said the ongoing fighting was not only killing people directly but it was hurting people’s economy, increasing poverty and generating fatal threats.

She said the government was struggling to improve security situation which was deteriorating with each passing day.

Shakiba Shakaib, women business affairs in charge at the Balkh Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said that the conflict had negatively affected the businesses of women in the province.

“This is an unhidden fact that the security situation has deteriorated but still we are thankful to the local government for its cooperation to explore markets for products produced by women,” she said.

About the establishment of peace, Shakaib said peace would help connect cities with districts and improve business activities in the province.

Governor Spokesperson Farhad Munir said that insecurity on highways and in districts had affected business activities but pledged that inside the city, the government was ready to provide every facility to businesswomen for improvement of their businesses.

Businesswomen in Balkh also asked both negotiating teams not to curtail their businesses, trade activities and the freedom they enjoyed in these areas.

This report has been produced by Pajhwok and financially supported by UNDP and Denmark.

nh/ma

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