Foreign Minister Børge Brende says Norway will continue to send around NOK 700 million (USD 87 million) in aid to Afghanistan every year until 2020, but with some strings attached. If the Afghan government fails to hold up its end of the bargain, aid will be cut.
It already has been, from NOK 750 million to the current NOK 700 million. Now Norway is making demands to see some results of its investment in both development and humanitarian aid.
“They must cooperate within the government, and they must work harder to fight corruption,” Brende told news bureau NTB at an international donors conference in Brussels this week. “That’s a condition if we are to continue sending what’s a very high level of aid.”
Norway is known for its generous foreign aid around the world and no single country receives more than Afghanistan, which has suffered through decades of armed conflict. “It’s one of the world’s poorest countries, so there’s no doubt there’s a need for development aid,” Brende said.
Corruption and ongoing unrest in the country remain serious problems, though. UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said the Afghan people “have suffered too much and for too long under political, social and economy difficulties, in addition to terrorism and extremism.” Its president Ashraf Ghani thanked the donor countries for their support and said that fighting poverty and terror was most important at present.