The Taliban-led Afghan government has inked a deal with a Chinese government for the extraction of oil in northern Afghanistan. This will be Afghanistan’s first high-profile deal since the takeover of the Taliban in 2021.
For the next 25 years, Xinjiang Central Asia Petroleum and Gas Company (CAPEIC) will drill for oil in Amu Darya basin, a transboundary river shared by Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, and Tajikistan.
Speaking in this regard, Chinese Ambassador to Afghanistan, Wang Yu, said that the oil extraction agreement is a significant initiative between China and Afghanistan.
Afghanistan is blessed with natural resources. The war-torn country has abundant reserves of natural gas, copper, and rare-earth elements estimated to be worth over $1 trillion.
Although China has not officially recognized the Taliban government, the initiative highlights China’s economic ambitions in the country, which is at the center of its Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) network.
Taliban have reciprocated Chinese efforts for the economic revival of Afghanistan by targeting Islamic State militants who attacked a hotel where Chinese businessmen were staying. Taliban killed 8 and arrested 7 IS militants on Thursday.