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Transforming Lives

Yellow baskets dot rugged Panjshir hillsides during the mulberry harvest. After collection, the berries are trucked to Kabul for

After learning that tons of mulberries were going to waste—up to 70 percent of the total crop—members of the U.S.-led Panjshir Provincial Reconstruction Team worked closely with the Directorate of Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock and extension agents to bring to market a new product, mulberry juice. This solution would generate much-needed farm revenue.

Representatives from Afghanistan's four mobile network operators speak at the USAID-sponsored mMoney Stakeholder Summit.

The campaign for a nationwide rollout of “mobile money” in Afghanistan moved a step closer with the founding of the Afghan Mobile Money Operators Association in May 2011. The association is the first such trade organization in Afghanistan and among the first in the world. For Afghanistan, which ranks at or near the bottom in nearly every World Bank economic measurement, mobile money would be a solid foundation in a functioning market economy to help accelerate economic growth.

Shahla Dastyar observing her student, Mursal Sarwari, who is in tum teaching students at a high school in Kabul.

Five years ago, teachers in high schools struggled with a lack of knowledge and students found it hard to grasp concepts in tedious lectures. A few years before that, females were banned from teaching and studying at all. Now, classrooms in Afghanistan are starting to feel full of life as young men and women study with confident, skilled teachers who present up-to-date materials in an interesting way.

Workers building a retaining wall around the Segana Reservoir in Zarghun Shar District.

Paktika Province sits on Afghanistan’s southeast corner along the Pakistan border. Living in an area hotly contested in recent decades, Paktika residents must deal with long-neglected infrastructure. Subsistence farmers using rundown irrigation systems struggle to keep their crops alive. The return of émigrés and a stream of refugees from Pakistan further strain the local economy.

Salt production substitutes imports from other countries

Pamir Belawr Salt Refinery Company is a local Afghan-owned firm that produces salt in Mazar-i Sharif. The firm started business in 2006, and has received a 10-year contract from the Afghan Government to extract salt from the Dawlatabad District Quarry in Balkh Province. The company used basic equipment and machinery to extract and process salt. It did not have the capacity or the machinery to process the extracted salt into refined and crystallized form ready for consumption. It also did not have access to a lab to test the salt quality. Therefore, its product was low quality and unsafe.

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Last updated: October 24, 2016

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