Auditing Firm Hired by US to Examine DAB: Mehrabi

Shah Mohammad Mehrabi, Central Bank supreme council member and board member of the Afghan Trust Fund in Switzerland, said that the US hired an auditing firm which was commissioned to examine or do the assessment of the Da Afghanistan Bank (DAB), the country’s central bank.

In an interview with said that the $3.5 billion Afghan Trust Fund has made $140 million in interest.

“There is no decision made regarding disbursement of this particular fund. My position is very clear. I want these reserves to be returned to the Central Bank of Afghanistan to be used for foreign exchange stability and price stability purposes,” he said. “Now there is a condition that has been laid out by the treasury of the United States and State Departments and that is that they want to make sure that AMLCFT (Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing) controls are intact … and also (that) the issue of capacity building exists at the Central Bank… To examine these two particular areas of concerns, an audit firm was hired by United States.”

He also said that domestic transactions via Afghan currency and high remittance played a good role in the stability of the afghani.

“In one way or another, there has to be an active engagement between Da Afghanistan Bank and the Treasury and the State Department (to) try to build confidence. In a confidence building measure, one of them it is what I suggested … let’s try to allow a certain amount of reserve to be released… if it is not used for the particular purpose or if it was misused, then it can easily be stopped,” Mehrabi said.

“One is obviously the ban that DAB has imposed on foreign currencies for domestic transactions… as a matter of fact the DAB has made the announcement that in two months, we would like, DAB would like all the transactions to be done in afghanis,” Mehrabi said.

He also said within the first two quarters of 2023, Afghanistan’s exports reached $900 million, which shows a three percent increase compared to the previous year.

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