JavaScript Menu, DHTML Menu Powered By Milonic


Join our e-mail mailing
list and receive our
monthly newsletter free
of charge

News and Views

Roads, Cellphones and Windmills Improve Quality of Life in Panjshir Valley

The Panjshir Valley’s Z Road started as a simple U.S. project to build a radio tower so people in the valley could pick up commercial radio from Kabul for the first time.

What began as a reconstruction project was eventually adopted by private cellphone, television, and wind farm companies. Much of this progress is the result of a synergy among the local government, the people and U.S. soldiers. The development boom is modernizing and transforming the valley, as well as bringing crucial irrigation to groves of walnut, almond and mulberry trees and fields of potatoes, beans and grapes.

Due to a lack of security challenges, the local Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) has been able to focus on development issues, mentoring local Afghans in planning, budgeting, modern construction techniques, maintenance and other areas that should help them build similar projects on their own and sustain them long-term. The PRT has been involved in about 90 other projects worth more than $8 million in the two years since the team was created. An additional $32 million was provided by USAID. One project constructed the first paved road in the valley, cutting the driving time between the provincial capital, Bazarak, and Kabul from five hours to two. This will in turn inspire more economic development, as the improvement to the infrastructure reduces the cost of transporting agriculture to the market.

Cellphone service alerted local leaders to floodwaters heading toward the area. They were able to mobilize emergency help within hours and save dozens of lives. The PRT has also helped build six 16-room schools. 10 windmills along the Z road will provide a new government center with electricity 24 hours a day.

Home | Contact Us | Sitemap © 2006 Embassy of Afghanistan and GlobeScope Inc. All Rights Reserved.