Aid Granted By India and the Bilateral Relation

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Indias well- targeted aid programs include many factors like infrastructure development, institutional capacity building, small development projects, as well as food security assistance in the form of ongoing deliveries of wheat to Afghanistan. Since 2001, more than 10,000 Afghan students have studied in India on ICCR scholarships, with some 7,000 returning home with an education and technical skills, which they are using towards the progress in Afghanistans stabilization and development. Meanwhile, many mid-career officers in the Afghan government has benefited from the technical capacity building programs of ITEC and the Indian Council of Agricultural Research, while some 8,000 Afghan students are pursuing self-financed degrees in different fields across India.

And Indias signature infrastructure projects- the building of the Afghan parliament in Kabul and the Salma Dam in Herat, are nearing the process of completion. The former will soon give Afghan MPs the secure space they need to further institutionalize democracy in Afghanistan, while the latter will generate 42MW of much-needed power for the electrification of rural and urban Herat, as well as helping irrigate 80,000 hectares of agricultural land.

In spite of many transit obstacles, the volume of Indo-Afghan trade stood at $680 million during 2013-2014, a figure that should exponentially rise. Moreover, air connectivity between the two countries has grown steadily. There are now four to five flights operating daily between Kabul and Delhi, bringing to India nearly 1,000 Afghans, many of them medical tourists, seeking better treatment in Delhi hospitals.

In January 2009, India completed construction of the Zaranj-Delaram highway in southwest Afghanistan near the Iranian border. Bilateral trade between India and Afghanistan has been on the rise, reaching $358 million for the fiscal year April 2007 to March 2008. India hopes its investment in the Iranian port at Chabahar will allow it to gain trading access to Afghanistan, bypassing Pakistan. Pakistan currently allows Afghanistan transit rights for its exports to India but does not allow goods to move from India to Afghanistan.


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