Photo: Taliban Finance Ministry

Head of Taliban Central Bank: Banking restrictions have caused financial isolation

The head of the Taliban-controlled Central Bank of Afghanistan, Hedayatullah Badri, in a meeting with the UN Special Coordinator for the assessment of the Afghanistan situation, Feridun Sinirlioğlu, expressed concern over the financial isolation resulting from banking restrictions in Afghanistan.

In a Pashto newsletter published by the Central Bank on Thursday, it was reported that in the meeting fostering joint cooperation, lifting banking restrictions, promoting private sector growth, and unfreezing Afghanistan’s reserves were discussed.

Badri reportedly emphasized that the sanctions imposed on Afghanistan’s banking sector have had negative effects on the economy, impeding access to international banks and causing financial isolation.

According to the newsletter, the head of the Taliban Central Bank appreciated the UN efforts in working with international partners and financial institutions, calling them “essential” in mitigating the negative impacts of sanctions on the Afghanistan banking system.

He also called for the cooperation of the United Nations for the release of Afghanistan’s frozen reserves.

The newsletter says the UN Special Coordinator has declared that the world wants better relations with Afghanistan in all fields.

Following the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan, The US government froze US$7 billion in Afghan central bank assets that were held in reserve. Later, this amount was divided in half. US$3.5 billion was transferred to a trust fund in Switzerland, while the other half is currently subject to a legal claim by victims of the 9/11 attacks.