CHAGHCHARAN (PAN): Three big rivers flow through the province but authorities miserably failed to construct water reservoirs in Ghor province where 90% of its economy depends on agriculture and livestock.
In addition, weaving carpets by women folk as well as trade and commerce are other economic activities flourish in the province.
The residents of Ghor fulfill their economic needs from Herat province as their roads were in dilapidated conditions.
Agriculture officials in Ghor say as many as 6,700 hectares irrigated and 150,000 hectares rain-feed land is available in the province.
Moreover, the province is covered by 22,000 hectares forest and 1,500 hectares orchards.
Ghummah Khan Bakhtari, head of provincial agriculture department says around 125 agriculture cooperatives centers have been established in the province where tractors to 20 cooperatives have been distributed.
He said agriculture sector was still based on traditional methods as the sector did not receive development in the past ten years.
The head of Ghor agriculture department said the nonexistence of cold storages and suitable market for the agriculture products were main hurdles for the vital agriculture sector.
Wheat, corn, barley, potatoes onions, bean, and other grains are widely grown in the province while walnut is among the popular dry fruit of the province.
Abdul Rahim, a farmer says that three known rivers each of Hari Rud, Fara Rud and Murghab flow in the province, however, the authorities failed to construct dames on those rivers in order to boost the agriculture sector.
Livestock farming is another important pillar of Ghor economic development where large number of its residence accommodated their economic needs through this way.
Ghor province has 29,000 hectares meadows for livestock and the farmers feed their cattle in natural meadows.
However, Abdul Bari, another farmer said that armed groups forcefully occupied meadows who did not allow their animals in the pasture.
Armed groups take one or couples of sheep from their cattle and nobody can dare to prevent them.
Trade and Investment:
The Ghor civil society organizations believe that foreign direct investment and support of privates sector can bring economic development to the province.
Nabi Saqi, one of the activists of civil society in Ghor says that industrial setup, proper management and utilization of manpower in the province can attract immense development in the province.
Being a mountainous province, the residence of Ghor chooses to move to neighboring countries for work, he said.
Mohammad Hassan, a young labour who just returned from Iran says that many youths in Iran are involved in drugs trafficking, adding that he is the oldest of his family with two small brothers, four sisters. He said that for some year he worked in Iran and managed to somehow afford the burden of his family.
He demanded the government to carry out work on basic projects in order to create long term jobs for the youths in the province.
Ghor is among the central provinces of the country which does not have borders with any outside country, hence, the province economic importance is less comparing to others.
Alhaj Gul Rahim, a businessman complained from the increasing tax and said that none of the basic facilities such as road, electricity were provided in the province in order to booster the trade and commerce in Ghor.
He demanded the government to encourage private sector and make sure the availability of basic facilities to the traders.
Weaving carpet is the most popular handcraft of people in Ghor province where women portion of society is mainly associated with the sector.
In addition, rugs, wad and other kinds of special clothes are also weaved by women in the province.
Khanam Gul whose husband died and had three children says that she accommodated her economic needs by weaving carpets.
She went on to say that she weaves a carpet in a month earing 4,000 afghanis, saying the market of Afghan carpet is now replaced by Turks and Iranian carpets.
Meanwhile, authorities say that as many as 1,000 women learned the art of carpet weaving and got other vocational trainings professionally in the province.
The vocational training programs worth $278 were initiated in Dowlinah, Tiwara and Saghar district by the financial assistance of United Nation Development Program and Ministry of Work and Social Affairs.
Carpet weaving is one of the most popular industries in Ghor province; however, the government did not take serious steps in order to develop the industry through exploring better market.
Dawlat Shah, one of the carpet businessmen criticized the government for ignoring the problems of carpet weavers.
He carries the carpets from Ghor to Herat Province in order to sell them.
He said that the vital carpet industry is at the brink of collapse in the province because the workers’ problems are increasing by each passing day and the government is not concerned about their problems.
According to him more than 10,000 meters carpet is weaved annually in the province.
He informed as many as 20,000 meters carpet is produced in Ghor, Badghis and Herat provinces.