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Sunday 05 July 2020

The press office of the House of Elders

December 1, 2019

In today’s plenary session led by the speaker of the House, besides of oath of two new senators, acting minister of finance responded to relevant questions of senators about the draft budget for the FY 1399.


According to the agenda, the oath of two new senators Shah Bibi and Maliha Jami were performed as they become new the appointed senators of the House.


Then, Muhammad Azim Quyash Chair of the National Economic, Financial and Budget Commission of the House and other Senators, remembered of better budget arrangement in this year, according to the past year, imbalances in the budget, lack of provincial budget anticipation, reduction of development budgets of agencies without their consent, transfer of developmental projects to other years, failure to implement developmental project funding in the first quarter of the fiscal year, employment issues, trade balance and payroll deductions, concerns regarding disregard to senators 'proposals to include some of the public welfare in budget of previous year


 and emphasize of considering suggestions in next fiscal year's budget. Preventing involvement of the powerful official in budget implementation, issue of getting 266 billion AFG loan, spending additional of one billion Afghanis, emphasizing the implementation of the Gardan-Dewar project and ring-road of Kabul city, imbalances in MoF employments, especially at the leadership levels and other issues were raised in the session.

Subsequently, Zahid Hamdard, acting Minister of Finance, acknowledged some of the weaknesses in previous years' budgets, pledged to include advisory opinions of members of parliament in this year's budget and urged the senators to pursue compliance with the relevant budgetary units.

He said that despite the diminishing in domestic and external financial resources, the needs and requirements are increasing dramatically, and this requires a national debate at the government level to get the necessary attention. And, unfortunately, despite efforts to balance equity in distribution, this trend has not been implemented years ago. Speaking about the surplus transfer of a seven-billion-AFG form special code, he said, since some issues were not considered at the beginning of the fiscal year, the amount was used in the essential cases.

They also noted that under the Cabinet Approval, the Budgetary Units that have failed to spend up to 50% of their development budgets in the first six months of the year, their development budgets have been cut and transferred to other budgetary units.

Furthermore, he added that the new financial year a $ 200 million loan is planned for the new fiscal year which these loans are long-term and will be used in infrastructure which ADB and Islamic Bank have a large stake in it, and their share of debt is very low, on the other hand, these loans are long-term and will be used in infrastructure.


He also provided information on the implementation of major projects of Gardan Diwar, the Torkham-Kabul railway, and the Kabul city Ring Road.

In open discussion, some members of the House said US President Donald Trump's visit to the Bagram military base was a good thing to do, but in accordance with diplomatic principles, he was expected to come to the ARG and meet with the President and other leaders.

 At the meeting, they also criticized the US President for pardoning US soldiers who have committed crimes in Afghanistan, saying that crime is crime wherever it occurs and should be treated in accordance with laws especially with international law, they also added that now the UK is also planning to pardon the British troops who committed the crime in Afghanistan.

The session noted that the Afghan peace talks had recently resumed and that the United States should share the views of the Afghan parliament and government with the Taliban, and in order to achieve this national process, an international consensus on peace should be established and neighboring countries should also be involved in this process.

Also, the senator expressed unfortunate about the martyrdom of General Zahir Maqbal, the Helmand Frontier Commander with his driver in an IED blast and prayed to the soul of all martyrs.


In sum up part of the session, speaker of the House discussed about the aforementioned raise concerned issues and referring to Donald Trump's visit to Afghanistan, he said Bagram military base is also Afghan territory and state and The fact that the US president has not come to ARG is related to the security situation and this is not a concerned issue, since similar meetings have been held in Jalal Abad and Herat with leaders of other countries.