A SIGAR report on sector development and economic growth in Afghanistan was published in April 2018. The report is the third in a series of lessons learned reports issued by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction. It examines how the U.S. government supported private sector development in Afghanistan through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and the Departments of Defense, State, Commerce and Treasury.
The report provides an in-depth look at five major areas of economic intervention:
- creating an enabling environment
- providing access to finance
- promoting investment
- developing regional and international trade
- and supporting enterprises
The last four chapters of the 246-page report provides “Findings”, “Lessons”, “Conclusions”, and “Recommendations”. The SIGAR report on sector development also includes several appendices about methodology, select U.S. government projects, and abbreviations.
Jeff Goodson, a retired U.S. Foreign Service Officer, provides his analysis of the SIGAR report on sector development and economic growth. He believes that the report is important because foreign direct investment is both critical to economic growth strategies and to the future economic development and stability of Afghanistan. While he states the historical part of the SIGAR report is excellent he finds the takeaways – the findings, lessons, recommendations, and conclusions – have significant problems. Read an article by Goodson on the SIGAR report published in May 2018 by The Small Wars Journal (link below).
“SIGAR on Economic Growth – Good History, Flawed Policy”, Small Wars Journal, May 21, 2018.
Private Sector Development and Economic Growth: Lessons From the U.S. Experience in Afghanistan, Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR), April 2018.
Goodson spent 29 years with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). He was Chief of Staff at USAID / Afghanistan from 2006-2007, and Director of Development at ISAF HQ in Kabul from 2010-2012 under David Petraeus and General John Allen.
Top Photo: Photo taken from the cover of the April 2018 SIGAR report cited above.