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US veterans built Afghan saffron company in Chicago

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(Last Updated On: April 6, 2016)

Kim and Emily Saffron

Afghanistan saffron has made three US veterans become interested in building a saffron company in Chicago; They aim to cultivate peace in Afghanistan through farming

The three war veterans are hoping to give farmers there a viable alternative to growing poppy for opium.

The company is called Rumi Spice. It was started by three Afghanistan War veterans, including West Point grads and longtime best friends Kimberly Jung and Emily Miller.

“The U.S. Military has probably spent millions, if not billions, of dollars on poppy eradication in Afghanistan. And thus far it’s been largely unsuccessful. They’ve done things like set fire to the crops or just outright try to destroy the fields. But at the end of the day, we truly believe that farmers need an economic alternative. And saffron is definitely the way,” Emily Miller said.

Jung also says ” We’re not in this to make lots of money. We’re in this because we believe that connecting Afghan farmers to the international marketplace is something that’s worth fighting for – it’s worth fighting for our global security, it’s worth fighting for everyone’s future – and that it’s going to make economic sense.”

Growing saffron in Afghanistan is still relatively uncommon, while neighboring Iran grows most of the world’s saffron.

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Three-day expo of Iranian goods and services underway in Kabul

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(Last Updated On: September 23, 2020)

Iran is hosting a three-day trade exhibition in Kabul in the hope of strengthening bilateral trade ties with Afghanistan. 

Speaking at the event, Iran’s Ambassador to Afghanistan Bahador Aminian said the exhibition aims to promote trade and share technical “know-how” with Afghanistan. 

Iran’s Commercial Consular in Kabul Javanmard Qassab said the exhibition will last for three days in an effort to introduce Iranian products to Afghan customers.

He said the embassy was hoping to sign agreements between Iranian and Afghan businesses. 

Trade value between the two countries has now topped $1.5 billion, with Iran exporting a large amount of goods to its neighbor annually. 

Afghan traders are also showcasing their products to Iranian businesses.

 Representatives of 21 Iranian companies that offer services within the municipal sector are participating along with 54 other Iranian companies. 

These companies are from a cross-sector of the commercial industry including technical and engineering services, along with electricity, energy and telecommunications providers.

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Gov’t approves four wind and solar power projects

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(Last Updated On: September 22, 2020)

The Afghan High Economic Council has approved four wind and solar power projects in Herat, Kabul and Balkh provinces.

Laima Khurram, director of public-private partnership policy at the Ministry of Finance, said the projects would cost an estimated $160 million.

“One of the wind power projects is in Herat with a capacity of 25 megawatts, another 40-megawatt solar power project is in Mazar, another 25-megawatt solar power plant is in Herat,” she said.

The projects are part of a public-private partnership between the government and the private sector.

This comes after last month’s agreement between the Afghan government and an Emirati company to generate 3,000 megawatts of solar power in Afghanistan. 

Afghanistan currently needs 2,000 megawatts of electricity to light homes and power the economy. However, it relies heavily on imported power from neighboring countries.

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Atmar addresses concerns of Afghans in Tajikistan

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(Last Updated On: September 19, 2020)

On a two-day official visit to Dushanbe, Tajikistan, acting foreign affairs minister Haneef Atmar met with a number of Afghan refugees, students and business owners at the Afghan Embassy on Friday evening where he discussed challenges they are facing. 

In a statement issued by foreign affairs on Saturday, the ministry said Atmar assured students and business owners that problems they have been dealing with – specifically due to COVID-19 – would be addressed as soon as possible. 

Easy border crossings for bilateral trade was also addressed and the embassy was instructed to assist refugees with problems they are facing, the statement read. 

Addressing Afghan students that attended the meeting, Atmar said it was important for them to return to their home country once they had completed their studies so as to help with the development of Afghanistan.

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