Following almost a decade of reconstruction since the transformation of Afghanistan towards a renewed nation, becoming “a stable self-sustaining Afghanistan at peace with itself and its neighbors”3 has not been a smooth one. Post-conflict Afghanistan is still constantly threatened by ‘new and different’ conflicts – tribal tensions, warlordism, and violence. Through development activities are now guided by the Afghanistan National Development Strategy (ANDS), 2008-2013, people in government, non-governmental, private and international finance institutions, and civil society organizations struggle under trying residual conflict conditions. They work towards building peace through humanitarian aid and development efforts, where the line of separation grows thinner and thinner. The volatile context of Afghanistan presents tremendous challenges to any development plan.
By eroding the capacity to anticipate, prepare and respond to shocks, these challenges heighten the vulnerability of Afghanistan to economic crises, climate-related hazards (drought, floods and wind damage), seismic hazards (earthquake and landslides), and increase the risk of relapse into conflict as well as impede achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the Hyogo Framework of Action (both with goals set for 2015) by undermining growth, job opportunities and the delivery of social services. Affected by conflict and disaster vulnerability, Afghanistan might eventually move farther away from achieving its own development targets.
With a commitment to achieve the MDGs set for 2015, the development process for Afghanistan has, since 2008, been guided by the ANDS, a product of intensive multi stakeholder consultations and collaboration.
The vision for Afghanistan by 2020 consists of:
- A stable Islamic constitutional democracy at peace with itself and its neighbors, standing with full dignity in the international family
- A tolerant, united, and pluralistic nation that honors its Islamic heritage and the deep seated aspirations toward participation, justice, and equal rights for all
- A society of hope and prosperity based on a strong, private-sector led market economy, social equity, and environmental