A leaked concept paper being circulated within Australia’s development community hints at the donor’s plans to focus on agriculture and rural development in Afghanistan in the next four years.
The Australian Agency for International Development, however, has not confirmed whether the proposals in the paper will be adopted. A spokesperson of the agency described the concept paper as a preliminary document that is still under consideration, the Sydney Morning Herald says.
The Herald, which saw a copy of the leaked document, says the paper proposes channeling more than 20 million Australian dollars ($21.6 million) to Afghan agriculture and rural development projects. The funding will be divided among five local nongovernmental organizations to be chosen through a competitive grants process.
According to the Herald, James Goodman of the Aid Watch monitoring group noted that the paper hints at a departure from previous AusAID funding for Afghanistan by supporting local NGOs. Goodman added the paper suggests Australia is seeking to maintain its influence in Afghanistan even as it withdraws troops from the Asian country.
Find jobs, projects and tenders on agriculture and rural development in Afghanistan. Read more development aid news online, and subscribe to The Development Newswire to receive top international development headlines from the world’s leading donors, news sources and opinion leaders — emailed to you FREE every business day.