The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia today announced that construction has begun on a major road project in Afghanistan. The Kabul - Kandahar - Herat highway, largely destroyed by war, is being rebuilt through a Saudi-U.S.-Japanese partnership. The road project will repair a major transportation artery and will help bring back transportation and trade to the war-torn country. The project is part of a multi-billion dollar effort to the rebuilding of Afghanistan.
According to Saudi Foreign Minister HRH Prince Saud Al-Faisal: “This is an important project. The economy of the country has been hindered by a lack of usable highway systems. But there is still so much work to be done.” Prince Saud encouraged other members of the partnership to continue to work with Saudi Arabia to accelerate the rebuilding program.
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has committed more than $270 million to the rebuilding of Afghanistan and for humanitarian aid. The contributions of Saudi Arabia are, on a per capita basis, the largest commitment of any of the countries that co-chair the international donor conference. From 2001 to date, the total amount of aid pledged to Afghanistan by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is over $233 million. This is in addition to $37 million donated by Saudi citizens as of the end of 2001.
Saudi Arabia is co-chair of the committee supervising the reconstruction of Afghanistan, along with the United States, the European Union, and Japan. The Saudi Development Fund (SDF) is the lead organization for the Kingdom in the relief efforts.
“The rebuilding of Afghanistan is critical to its stability,” stated Prince Saud.