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Afghanistan

4

Projects Includes planned, ongoing and closed projects

US$ 576.66 million

Total Project Cost

US$ 202.25 million

Total IFAD financing

356,678

Households impacted


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The Context

Since the Soviet invasion of 1979, Afghanistan has struggled with the challenges of conflict, drought and floods. The economy of this semi-arid, landlocked country is rural based, and more than three quarters of the people live in rural areas.

Poverty is widespread throughout the country, which has a high population growth rate. An estimated 21 per cent of the rural population lives in extreme poverty and 38 per cent of rural households face food shortages.

Agricultural production is the main source of rural livelihoods. The years of conflict have hampered development of the agriculture sector, which also suffers from natural disasters and insufficient investment. Landholdings are small, so agriculture is rarely the family’s main source of food or income. About two thirds of rural households own some livestock, and farmers also sell their labour.

Security and development challenges remain daunting. The security situation is a constraint on confidence, investment and growth. Harsh weather conditions impede growth, and agricultural production declined 5.7 per cent in 2015. Available data for the first half of 2016 indicate low levels of investment, and agricultural production has been disrupted by crop diseases and pests.

The Strategy

IFAD works with small farmers and vulnerable and marginalized socioeconomic groups, particularly women and ethnic minorities, in rural and mountain environments. IFAD's current work in Afghanistan takes into account the difficult security situation in most of the country. 

The results-based country strategic opportunities programme for Afghanistan for the period 2008-2012 was the first that IFAD has developed for the country. An updated version is being reviewed.

Formulated in close consultation with Afghan authorities and development partners, the programme aims to support and complement the pro-poor policies and programmes of the Government and other international and national development partners, as reflected in the Interim Afghanistan National Development Strategy.

The programme’s objective is to reduce gender disparities and increase the social and economic status of vulnerable and marginalized communities. Its specific objectives are to:

  • strengthen the capacity of local development institutions, entrepreneurs and government agencies for planning, enterprise development and economic growth;
  • increase access to financial services in rural areas;
  • enhance the assets, skills and productivity of rural households.

Results-based country strategic opportunities programme (COSOP): 
Arabic | English | French | Spanish

Country Facts

Afghanistan is a rural economy and about 73 per cent of the population lives in rural areas.

Agriculture in Afghanistan is traditionally the major activity for a large portion of the population, but the sector has suffered from nearly 30 years of conflict, low investment and natural disasters.

An estimated 21 per cent of rural people live in extreme poverty and 38 per cent of rural households face food shortages.


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Country documents

Country strategy note

Type: Country strategy note (CSN)
Region: Asia and the Pacific

Projects and Programmes

PLANNED Under design after concept note approval

APPROVED Approved by the Executive Board or IFAD President

SIGNED Financing agreements signed

ONGOING Under implementation

CLOSED Completed/closed projects

No matching projects were found
No matching projects were found
No matching projects were found

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Related news

United Nations agency to provide thousands of rural families access to food in Afghanistan

February 2016 - NEWS
The UN’s International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) has signed an agreement with the government of Afghanistan that will help ensure the food

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Related stories

Get sick or go hungry: Afghan nomads battle against COVID-19

June 2020 - STORY
Since COVID-19 hit Afghanistan in mid-March, it has posed a dreadful dilemma for the Kuchis (Afghan nomads): get sick or go hungry.

Livestock-keepers see incomes rise and nutrition improve in Afghanistan

August 2018 - STORY
Poor rural people in the Afghan provinces of Kabul, Parwan and Logar are feeding their families better and increasing their earnings by taking part in the IFAD-funded Community Livestock and Agriculture Project.

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Related publications

Grant Results Sheet: AKF - Mobilizing public private partnerships in support of women-led small business development

March 2018
When trying to develop a business, women in Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, face multiple obstacles that have to do with their gender and with the challenging economic environment, which affects women more profoundly than men. 

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