Officials report sharp rise in government’s income from transportation sector

The Ministry of Transportation reported a sharp rise in the income of government from transportation sector, stating the revenue collection during the current year shows a rise of almost 200 per cent.

The Transportation Minister Mohammad Hamid Tahmasi told reporters that income from the transportation sector during the first and second quarter of the current fiscal year shows an increase of 203 per cent as compared to the same period last year.

He said the income have mainly been collected from the central as well as provincial branches and ports of the country.

In regards to the ongoing efforts against corruption and reforms, Tahmasi said the ministry’s leadership has taken key steps for reforms in the administrative setup, provision of transportation facilities, and establishment of system and mechanism for the collection of income.

According to Tahmasi, the revenue collection from the central branches and ports during the first and second quarter of the year has reached to 219 million which was 72 million during the same period last year.

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Poppy cultivation up By 11 %

The Ministry of Counter Narcotics on Monday raised concerns over the increase in poppy cultivation in the country, saying this year, the trend has increased by 11 percent against last year.

Addressing a press conference in Kabul, deputy minister of counter narcotics Jawed Ahmad Qayeem said insurgents are taking advantage of opium production and smuggling.

Meanwhile, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) said in its latest Afghanistan Opium Survey that factors such as political instability, a rise in security threats and unemployment appear to be forcing farmers to resort to cultivating poppies.

According to the Ministry of Counter Narcotics, the UN survey states that last year drugs from Afghanistan smuggled and sold abroad totaled an estimated $7.5 billion USD.

“Forty six percent of farmers in 2017 said they cultivated continuously, meaning that they also cultivated poppies over the past two or three years. Fifty four percent said they have just started to cultivate or did not cultivate in recent years while 57 percent of the annual income of those cultivating continuously comes from drugs,” said Qayeem.

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