Chinese company to extract Afghanistan's Amu oilfields
Photo: GMICAfghanistan via Twitter

Taliban signs $540 million oil deal with China

The Taliban has signed a deal with the Chinese company Xinjiang Central Asia Petroleum and Gas Co (CAPEIC) to extract oil from northern Afghanistan’s Amu Darya basin. The 25-year deal signed in a ceremony on Thursday in Kabul between the Taliban’s mining minster, Shahabuddin Dilawara, and the representatives from the CAPEIC is worth 540 million US dollars. 

Present at the televised ceremony, the Chinese ambassador for Afghanistan, Wang Yu, said that “the contract was important for China and Afghanistan.” Adding that “China would never interfere in Afghanistan’s internal affairs.”

The deal requires the Chinese petroleum company to invest $150m a year in Afghanistan, and is expected to rise to $540m over three years. 

China has not officially recognised the Taliban, but supported the group before it took control of Afghanistan, and has struck a close political and economic relationship since. 

Chinese investors have been making regular visits to Kabul with promises of investing in Afghanistan’s energy infrastructures. 

In December 2022, Afghanistan’s national energy supplier, Da Afghanistan Breshna Sherkat (DABS), announced that Chinese investors were interested in building a 500MW coal-fired power station in the country.