Afghan Aid Money Winds Up In Corporate Hands

A report by the Agency Coordinating Body for Afghan Relief clams too much money destined to help the people lof afghanistan is spent on foreign worker high salaries, security and their living arrangements. Since 2001, the international community has pledged $25 billion in help but has only delivered $15 billion to the people of Afghanistan. Of the $15 billion about 40% of it–some $6 billion– goes back to donor countries in corporate profits and consultant salaries. According to the report; ” A vast amount of aid is absorbed by high salaries, living, security, transport and accomodation costs for expatriates working for consulting firms or contractors. The cost of a full-time consultant working in Afghanistan is around $250,000 per year. That is about 1,000 times the salary of an Afghan civil servant who receives about $1,000 yearly.

Amy Frumin, who works with the Council on Foreign Relations, believes the criticism is unfair since it is difficult finding good people for these tasks. “You have to pay them good money to do that. They’re still having trouble finding people to fill these positions. It’s a dangerous place. Not many people are willing to risk their limbs.”

The report notes the US allocates close to half its funds to five large US contractors, and “it is clear that substantial amounts of aid continue to be absorbed in corporate profits.” In the two years following the invasion of Afghanistan, that nation recieved $57 per capita while Bosnia and East Timor received $679 and $233.

OP course NATO and US troops fight and work in Afghanistan for much lower wages than the average consultant. Perhaps, we should designate all those troops as “consultants” and pay them accordingly.