Afghanistan’s Taliban administration to pay overdue salaries of government workers

Nov 20, 2021: The Taliban administration in Afghanistan will start paying the salaries of government employees from Saturday, officials said.

Thousands of Afghan government employees are owed at least three months’ salary, one of the many crises the Taliban have faced since the movement took over the country in August. Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said on Twitter, “The finance ministry says that from today, the salaries of all government employees and staff for the last three months will be paid in full.”

It was not immediately clear where the funding for the salaries would come from.

Even before the Taliban took control last August, many public sector workers said they had not been paid for weeks. After the movement came to power, billions of dollars of Afghan government funds were frozen in the United States and Europe.

After a meeting on Thursday between the special envoys of Germany and the Netherlands and Taliban officials in Kabul, the envoys expressed willingness to explore paying health and education sector workers directly through international organisations.

Foreign governments are reluctant to provide direct funding to the Taliban-led administration to help with financial commitments such as workers’ pay. International financial institutions have also stopped funding.

Another Taliban spokesman, Inamullah Samangani, said on Twitter on Saturday that the Taliban administration’s daily income was increasing. “In the last 78 working days of the last three months, we have earned about 26.915 billion afghanis ($ 288 million),” the finance ministry said.

“We collected 557 million afghanis  (5.9 million) in revenue on Wednesday alone,” Samangani was quoted as saying by the finance ministry.

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