Development assistance to Afghanistan 2001–2010
As the security situation gradually improved from mid November 2001,
humanitarian agencies began to expand their operations and redeploy their staff
to major urban areas in Afghanistan.
The country's prospects now presented a fresh opportunity for the new
administration and the donor community to tackle the enormous task of recovery.
Australia supported the US and NATO led interventions in Afghanistan. It also
responded to the UN call for support and assistance for humanitarian aid and
for the restoration and renewal of Afghanistan. In this chapter, the committee
provides an overview of international efforts to provide assistance to
Afghanistan and, against this backdrop, details Australia's contribution to
help the Afghan people rebuild their country and livelihoods.
The parties to the Bonn Agreement requested the UN, the international
community, particularly donor countries and multilateral institutions, 'to
reaffirm, strengthen and implement their commitment to assist with the
rehabilitation, recovery and reconstruction of Afghanistan, in coordination
with the Interim Authority'.
Within weeks, the international community rallied to the call for assistance.
Tokyo Conference 2002
In January 2002, just over a month after the meeting in Bonn,
representatives from 61 countries and 21 international organisations assembled
in Tokyo at an International Conference on Reconstruction Assistance to
Afghanistan. The participants reaffirmed their readiness to help Afghan people
recover. At this gathering, the Afghan Interim Administration identified the
following key priority areas for the reconstruction of the country:
- enhancement of administrative capacity, with emphasis on the payment
of salaries and the establishment of the government administration;
- education, especially for girls;
- health and sanitation;
infrastructure, in particular, roads, electricity and
reconstruction of the economic system, in particular, the
currency system; and
- agriculture and rural development, including food security, water
management and revitalising the irrigation system.
Afghan and international NGOs also held a meeting during which they
recognised that to build the capacity of the Afghan people to contribute to
reconstruction, it was necessary to focus on education and training,
particularly for women.
The Tokyo conference was the first of a number of international
gatherings that would bring the government of Afghanistan and the international
donor community together in a combined effort to ensure that development
assistance would be used most effectively to rebuild the country. Although not
part of this series of meetings, the Paris Declaration in 2005 stands out as a
major landmark for international development assistance, which influenced the
thinking at subsequent meetings on Afghanistan.
Paris Declaration 2005
In March 2005, over 90 participating countries and 40 organisations
endorsed a strategy designed to improve the effectiveness of development
assistance and made a commitment to the following principles:
- ownership by partner country—respect the recipient country's leadership
and help to strengthen their capacity to exercise it;
- alignment—base overall support on partner country's national
development strategies, institutions and procedures including by using the
recipient country's own institutions and systems, where these provide assurance
that aid will be used for agreed purposes;
- harmonisation—complement aid activities so that they are
transparent and collectively effective, including by donors working together to
reduce the number of separate, duplicative missions to the field and promote
joint training to share lessons learnt and build a community of practice;
- managing for results—link country programming and resources to
results and align them with effective partner country performance assessment
mutual accountability—provide timely, transparent and
comprehensive information on aid flows to enable partner authorities to present
comprehensive budget reports to the legislatures and citizens and with partners
assessing mutual progress in implementing agreed commitments.
These foundation principles formed an important platform for decisions
and agreements reached in the series of conferences on development assistance
to Afghanistan that followed the first Tokyo conference in 2002. The London
Conference in 2006 marked the next significant milestone.
London Conference 2006 and the Afghanistan
At the beginning of 2006, the newly-elected Government of Afghanistan
and the international community gathered in London to devise a strategy for
solving Afghanistan's problems. They reached agreement on a compact, which
enunciated the objectives for state building and set benchmarks in core sectors
of security, governance, rule of law and human rights; and economic and social
Under this compact, donors would among other things:
- provide assistance within the framework of the Afghanistan
National Development Strategy (ANDS);
- increasingly provide more predictable and multiyear funding
commitments or indications of multiyear support to Afghanistan;
increase the proportion of donor assistance channelled through
the core budget, as well as through other more predictable core budget funding
modalities in which the Afghan Government participates;
- provide assistance for the development of public expenditure
management systems essential for improving transparency and accountability in
the use of donor resources and countering corruption;
recognise that, because of the need to build Afghan capacity,
donor assistance provided through the external budget would be designed to
build this capacity in the government as well as the private and non-profit
- ensure that development policies (including salary policies)
strengthen national institutions that are sustainable in the medium to long
term for delivery of programs by the government;
- within the principles of international competitive bidding,
promote the participation in the bidding process of the Afghan private sector
and South-South cooperation
in order to overcome capacity constraints and to lower costs of delivery; and
- provide timely, transparent and comprehensive information on
foreign aid flows covering the nature and amount of assistance provided through
the core and external budgets.
In respect of aid not channelled through the core budget, participating
countries to the Afghan compact agreed to endeavour to:
- harmonise the delivery of technical assistance in line with
government needs to focus on priority areas and reduce duplication and transaction
- reduce the external management and overhead costs of projects by
promoting the Afghan private sector in their management and delivery;
- increasingly use Afghan national implementation partners and
equally qualified local and expatriate Afghans; and
- increase procurement within Afghanistan of supplies for civilian
and military activities; and use Afghan materials in the implementation of
projects, in particular for infrastructure.
The Government of Afghanistan undertook to provide a 'prioritised and
detailed Afghanistan National Development Strategy (ANDS) with indicators for
monitoring results'. As a participating country to the 2006 Afghanistan
Compact, Australia affirmed its commitment to improve the effectiveness of the
aid being provided to Afghanistan in accordance with the Paris Declaration on
Paris 2008 and the Afghanistan
National Development Strategy (ANDS)
After two years of extensive consultations, the Afghan Government
produced its National Development Strategy covering the period 2008–2013. President
Hamid Karzai described it as an 'Afghan-owned blueprint for the development of
Afghanistan in all spheres of human endeavour'.
Although focused on the next five years, the ANDS was to serve as Afghanistan's
'roadmap for the long-desired objective of Afghanization' as the country
transitioned 'towards less reliance on aid and an increase in self-sustaining
The strategy's overriding objectives were to reduce poverty
substantially, improve the lives of the Afghan people, and create the
foundation for a secure and stable country'.
It recognised that, despite the government's commitment and the considerable
assistance provided by the international community, achieving all its
objectives fully would not be possible in five years. The ANDS made clear that
the principles of the Paris Declaration would undergird the strategy.
In June 2008, the Afghan Government and the international community
adopted the ANDS as a common framework for joint action over the coming five
years. Meeting in Paris, the donor countries agreed to align their efforts
behind the financing and implementation of the strategy. They gave their
commitment to a 'strengthened partnership, based on Afghan leadership, on a set
of agreed priorities, and on mutual obligations.' In their declaration, the
international community agreed to provide increased, more predictable,
transparent and accountable assistance and to deliver it in a more coordinated
way. Aid was to be channelled increasingly through the national budget as
strengthened and accountable government institutions acquired greater capacity
for management. The international community also agreed that aid would be provided
in order to: focus on state building; avoid parallel structures; promote local
procurement and capacity building; and ensure that the benefits would reach all
International assistance and the transition
London Conference 2010
Two years later, at the London Conference in January 2010, the
international community pledged to maintain its long term commitment to
Afghanistan as previously set out in the 2002 Tokyo Conference, the 2006
Afghanistan Compact and the 2008 Paris Declaration. Conference participants in
London in 2010 re-affirmed the goals of greater Afghan leadership, increased
regional cooperation and more effective international partnership. They stated
their commitment to make intensive efforts to ensure that the Afghan government
was 'increasingly able to meet the needs of its people through developing its
own institutions and resources'.
The conference communiqué welcomed the international community's
commitment to more effective and properly resourced civilian engagement and to support
the Afghan Government in order to improve the performance of international
civilian assistance. It also recognised the international community's
commitment to align its assistance more closely with Afghan priorities, in keeping
with the Paris principles on aid effectiveness.
Conference participants also undertook to help the Afghan Government's
anti-corruption efforts by providing assistance to the new institutions and to
increase the transparency and effectiveness of their own aid in line with the
2008 Paris Conference Declaration and the United Nations Convention Against Corruption.
Shortly after the London meeting, another was held in Kabul in July
2010, where the Afghan government and the international community recognised that
to achieve success their partnership should be based on Afghanistan's leadership
and ownership—the two key principles of aid effectiveness.
Donors stated their intention to realign their assistance to advance
Afghanistan's priorities and reaffirmed the commitments made in London to
channel a greater share of international resources through the Afghan
Summary of international
From Bonn in 2001 through to the Kabul conference in 2010, the Afghan
Government and international community endeavoured to establish principles and
guidelines for the effective delivery of development assistance to Afghanistan.
They understood that if Afghanistan were to recover and rebuild, it had eventually
to take charge of its own affairs but that it needed outside assistance to fund
and develop the capacity to do so. The international community recognised the
importance of working in partnership with the Afghan Government; of aligning its
assistance with the government's priorities; and of increasing the proportion
of funds channelled through the national budget.
Against this background, the committee in the following section traces
the evolving nature of Australia's development assistance to Afghanistan.
Table 3.1: Australian ODA to Afghanistan by Australian Government Agency
Australia's aid program is one element of 'an integrated
whole-of-government effort involving interlinked security, diplomatic and
The diagram on the previous page shows the amount of Australian ODA to
Afghanistan and the government departments and agencies engaged in delivering
aid to Afghanistan from 2001–2013. It should be noted that this diagram is a
revised version of the one originally provided to the committee in AusAID's
submission. Due to Defence's overestimation of ODA eligible funds the amount of
ODA attributed to Defence has been reduced significantly.
Funding and priorities before 2001
Before 2001, Australian aid to Afghanistan was minimal and directed
mainly toward Australia’s landmine action program. This program was designed to
help people in Afghanistan lead more productive lives by 'demining arable land,
reducing casualty rates by mine mapping and education, and helping victims reintegrate
into society by retraining and assisting with their medical needs'.
Australia also directed its bilateral and multilateral efforts to assisting
countries of first asylum such as Iran and Pakistan to deal with long term
caseloads of Afghanistan refugees.
Funding and priorities—2001–2005
In the years immediately following the Bonn Agreement, Australia's aid
to Afghanistan's recovery was modest, rising from a relatively low base of $7
million in 2000–01 to between $20.68 million and $26.5 million in the subsequent
five years. During this period, the Australian Agency for International
Development (AusAID) and the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC)
were the only significant agencies delivering development assistance to
In 2001–2002, AusAID disbursed over $37 million to provide humanitarian
relief and reconstruction assistance to Afghan people affected by war, drought
and earthquake. At that time, the funding represented Australia's second
largest contribution to a single humanitarian effort, exceeded only by East
Australia also supported emergency medical assistance, landmine awareness and clearance
activities, capacity building for Afghan civil society groups and for the local
administration. To do so, it used the Afghanistan Interim Authority Trust Fund,
which was administered by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
The following financial year, 2002–03, Australian aid to Afghanistan was
again primarily humanitarian, targeted at priority needs for medical assistance,
mine action, food security, basic education and help for displaced and
returning Afghans. Assistance, however, was also provided for drug control and reconstruction
activities in areas such as banking and finance.
The Australian Centre for Internal Agricultural Research (ACIAR) provided
$650,000 in multilateral funding for the 'Seeds of Strength' project, which
commenced in 2002.
Although Australia's aid program to Afghanistan focused on humanitarian
assistance including the return and reintegration of displaced Afghans and
improving food security, it also sought to assist Afghanistan by building the
capacity of national institutions to manage a successful transition to a
For example during 2004–2005, Australia provided $5 million for governance and
electoral support for the October 2004 presidential elections in Afghanistan and
preparations for the parliamentary elections in late 2005.
Australian presence in Afghanistan
During this early period, AusAID did not have a permanent presence in
Afghanistan and Australia provided aid as part of a coordinated international effort
delivered through contributions to multilateral organisations including United
The main NGOs and organisations receiving Australian funds were the World Food
Program, UNICEF, International Committee for Red Cross, United Nations High Commissioner
for Refugees (UNHCR), and the International Organisation for Migration (IOM).
Funding and priorities—2006–2009
At the 2006 London Conference, Australia renewed its bilateral aid
commitment to Afghanistan.
It pledged $150 million with funding beyond mid-2007 subject to the Government
of Afghanistan's performance against benchmarks contained in the 2006 compact.
Indeed, between 2006 and 2009 Australia's ODA to Afghanistan increased significantly
from an average of around $20.3m per year for the preceding 5 years to $36.6m
in 2006–07, $84.7m in 2007–08, $90m in 2008–09, dipping to $82m in 2009–10.
On the diplomatic front, the government decided to establish an embassy
in Kabul, which prompted a whole-of-government effort to prepare for the
embassy's opening in September 2007.
At this time, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) established a
new Direct Aid Program in Afghanistan, a flexible small grants scheme,
administered by the embassy in Kabul.
Throughout this period, Australia’s aid program continued to focus on helping
the Afghan Government build its ability to provide security and deliver
essential services, including health and education.
Australia provided training and capacity building activities to key ministries
including health, education, rural reconstruction and development, agriculture,
irrigation and livestock.
It also focused on improving infrastructure including water supply and
sanitation, rural roads and irrigation.
Reconstruction and development efforts in Afghanistan were underpinned by the
priorities and goals of the 2006 Afghanistan Compact and the ANDS.
Through support to the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission, Australia
continued funding for demining operations, assisting the victims of mines and
improved human rights conditions.
As part of its resettlement program in Afghanistan, the Department of
Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) commenced a project in September 2006 to
build accommodation for refugees. The settlement, named AliceGhan, sought to provide
housing, public services, infrastructure and vocational training and employment
opportunities for vulnerable returnee families.
The committee discusses this project further when it considers the
effectiveness of Australia's aid to Afghanistan.
In 2006, to assist in the reconstruction of infrastructure in
Afghanistan, Australia deployed a Reconstruction Task Force of 400 ADF troops as
part of the Dutch-led Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) in Uruzgan with
supplementation of $218.2 million over three years.
This contribution to the PRT as part of ISAF was the first time that Australia
had deployed troops to a NATO operation.
It marked a notable surge in development activity by Defence in Afghanistan,
which accounted for around 16 per cent of Australia's ODA to Afghanistan in
2006–07 rising to 20 per cent in 2007–08 and 2008–09 (this is based on the
The Uruzgan PRT, one of more than 26 such teams operating across
Afghanistan, comprised both civilian and military personnel working together in
support of the outreach delivery of governance and development activities.
First established in 2003, PRTs were responsible for overseeing governance and
development efforts in their respective province. The teams were to assist 'in
establishing security in the areas of their deployment to facilitate the
establishment and work of provincial administrations and development
organizations and to promote rule of law'.
Initially, the ADF Reconstruction Task Force in Uruzgan was a mix of
engineers and security personnel working on rebuilding vital infrastructure (hospitals,
schools, bridges, causeways and culverts) and community-based projects.
As 2008 progressed, Defence indicated that the force in Afghanistan would
transition to a mentoring and reconstruction role in Uruzgan with the
deployment of ADF mentors to train the Afghan National Army (ANA).
This development would align with the broader strategy of establishing a
self-reliant Afghan National Security Force.
The Mentoring and Reconstruction Task Force's mission was then
twofold—reconstruction and training and mentoring. The Chief of the Defence
Force (CDF) noted that as time went on, the focus would be 'very much on
transiting into training': that the Australian force would become more engaged
in training the ANA and the Afghan National Police (ANP).
In late 2007, AusAID deployed the first of its development advisers to Uruzgan
province to support the reconstruction efforts of the ADF’s Reconstruction Task
Law and order
AFP personnel were not directly involved in delivering assistance to
Afghanistan until 2006. Late that year, after formal requests for assistance
from the governments of the United Kingdom and Afghanistan, the Australian
Government decided to deploy AFP officers.
This decision was taken following two scoping missions to the country that
reviewed the security situation and other issues such as immunities,
protections and coalition facilities available for AFP personnel.
DFAT worked on negotiations for a memorandum of understanding on privileges and
immunities covering AFP members to make their deployment possible.
At the beginning of 2007, the Minister for Justice and Customs announced
that AFP personnel would be deployed to Afghanistan for an initial period of
two years to support the international effort to assist police in Afghanistan.
Funding of $5.357 million over two years was made available for the deployment.
Of the first contingent of four officers who served in Afghanistan
between October 2007 and October 2008, two agents were based in Kabul to mentor
senior police and act as high-level advisors to the Afghan National Police
(ANP). They assisted the multinational security transition force that was
overseeing efforts to train and build the capability of the ANP.
The other two agents were placed in advisory roles with the Counter Narcotics
Police of Afghanistan (CNPA) in Jalalabad in the eastern part of the country.
They worked under the auspices of the British Embassy Drug team and their
appointments were in response to a request for assistance from the UK Foreign
and Commonwealth Office. The Office was seeking advisors with experience
investigating illegal narcotics to join the CNPA, which managed all major drug
investigations in Afghanistan.
The AFP understood that the large scale production of opium in Afghanistan
fuelled the Taliban-led insurgency, threatening regional and international
In May 2008, an additional eight AFP officers were deployed to
Afghanistan to assist in capacity development and counter-narcotics activities.
The deployment comprised specialist police personnel who were placed in
selected locations within Afghanistan as part of Australia's wider effort to
support international stabilisation. The officers provided high level advice to
the NPA and assumed advisory roles with the CNPA.
The AFP explained that the mission had a particular focus on countering the
production and trade of narcotics:
As part of a whole-of-government response to the counter-narcotics
challenge, the deployment provides strategic, analytical and intelligence
advice on counter-narcotics and law enforcement activities being conducted
within wider international stabilisation activities.
The AFP's work was undertaken in cooperation with the Government of
Afghanistan. Although the AFP recognised that its contribution was relatively
small, the placement of its personnel within Coalition commands and operational
organisations allowed it to support the international effort at the strategic
and operational levels.
Between 2009 and 2010, the AFP deployed a further 12 members to
Afghanistan to support ANP counter-narcotic efforts. Located in Kabul and
Kandahar, they were 'strategically placed within the Crimes Task Force, the Inter-Agency
Operations Coordination Centre and the Combined Joint Inter Agency Task Force'.
The officers worked on intelligence analysis and developed strategic direction
and planning for ANP capability enhancement. AFP members also provided
'strategic direction to the Afghan-led Major Crimes Task Force'. Coalition
partners developed this task force to improve and promote an Afghan national
investigation capability to target high-level corruption, kidnapping and
It should be noted that expenditure on police training is reportable as
ODA, unless the training relates to paramilitary functions such as
counter-insurgency work or intelligence gathering on terrorism.
Alignment with the 2008 Paris
In June 2008, the then Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Hon Stephen
Smith, pledged a further $250 million in reconstruction and development assistance
to Afghanistan over the next three years. The extra funding was to assist
Afghanistan to provide better health and education services, secure food
supplies in the face of rising world prices, strengthen its police force and expand
landmine action programs. In accord with the Paris Declaration of 2008, Australia
undertook to align its development assistance with Afghanistan's strategy goals
in the key areas of security, governance, rule of law and human rights, and
economic and social development.
Training and mentoring
During 2009, the international community became increasingly aware of
the need for its effort to be more comprehensive and inclusive: for there to be
a collective resolve to promote government development and police capability as
well as security.
In March 2009, Australia's Foreign Minister welcomed the call for a comprehensive
approach to Afghanistan. He stated that a military campaign alone would not
solve Afghanistan's problems: that there was a need to better integrate
military and civilian efforts across the country.
The following month, the then Prime Minister indicated that Australia
concurred with the view that the current civilian and military strategy was not
working and had decided to increase Australia's medium term contribution to
Afghanistan. He announced that a key objective was to train Afghan forces so
that in time they could take over responsibility for Uruzgan province.
Australia's commitment would also include increased civilian support for
governance, reconstruction and development, with an emphasis on enhanced
support for the provincial administration of Uruzgan.
The Prime Minister also indicated that an additional AFP training and advisory
team of approximately ten officers would be deployed to train and advise the ANP.
Six officers were posted to Uruzgan Province to mentor and advise training
staff at the Tarin Kowt Provincial Training Centre and to assist the ANP build
and develop core policing capabilities.
The Prime Minister explained that these civilian efforts would:
...help ensure, for each military success that we have, that
success is appropriately reinforced through policing efforts and development
assistance that strengthens, also the local economy.
Thus, in Uruzgan, where Australian troops were concentrated, AusAID, DFAT
and AFP officers worked alongside the ADF on reconstruction, stabilisation and
capacity building efforts as part of the PRT.
Funding and priorities 2010—2012
Between 2010 and 2012, Australia's ODA increased markedly. In 2009–10, aid
delivered through AusAID's country program to Afghanistan totalled $53.3
According to AusAID, its country program increased by 50% in 2010–2011 to $106
million out of a total ODA of $123.1 million (Figure 3.1 shows $101.4m).
AusAID established a new Afghanistan and Pakistan Branch incorporating two
Afghanistan sections and a Minister Counsellor was deployed to Kabul to head
AusAID's in-country operations.
In 2011–12, AusAID's country program to Afghanistan increased further to
$164.4 million which together with other assistance through regional and global
programs and other government agencies brought Australia’s total ODA to an
estimated $196.7 million.
Leadership of the Uruzgan PRT
While AusAID continued to work at the national level to strengthen the
Afghan Government's capacity to deliver basic services, particularly to women
and children, it also provided such assistance at the provincial level, with a
special focus on Uruzgan province.
According to AusAID, during 2010–11 approximately 80 per cent of its assistance
was delivered at the national level, with the remainder going to Uruzgan where
its whole-of-government mission contributed to governance and development, infrastructure
reconstruction and police training in the province.
Increase in personnel
When the Netherlands withdrew from Uruzgan province in August 2010,
Australia assumed leadership of the Joint Australian/US/Uruzgan PRT, which
comprised roughly 175 personnel, mostly US and Australian.
The decision to lead the Uruzgan PRT provided added impetus to
Australia's commitment to train ANA and the ANP and to increase the civilian
side of its contingent in Afghanistan. The number of personnel deployed to
Afghanistan increased notably and there was a sizeable boost in ODA with
AusAID's contribution far outstripping that of other agencies.
A civilian leader from DFAT took leadership of this integrated civil-military
team with around 30 other Australian civilians drawn from DFAT, AusAID and the
During 2010, AusAID added another five personnel to its staff located in
Afghanistan taking the total to nine officers—an increase from three to six in
Tarin Kowt; from one to two in Kabul; and one in Kandahar.
An AusAID senior officer was posted to the Uruzgan PRT as Deputy Director to
lead its development operations. In addition, four Development Advisers were
appointed to plan and facilitate PRT development activities.
DFAT's staff doubled to 11 with personnel increases from three to seven
in Kabul; from one to three in Uruzgan Province and one staff member in
The number of AFP personnel reached 28:
- 21 were at Tarin Kowt involved in training and mentoring Afghan
- 3 were in Kandahar with the NATO Training Mission-Afghanistan
(NTM-A), the Joint Regional ANP Centre and the Counter Narcotics Joint Interagency
Task Force Afghanistan; and
- 4 were in Kabul providing command for the AFP Mission, liaison with
the NTM-A and providing support to countering serious criminality through
engagement in the International Operations Coordination Centre (IOCC) and
training the Afghan Major Crime Task Force.
According to the AFP, the role of its officers related directly to
training the ANP and assisting in the development of ANP capabilities to deal
with criminality in Afghanistan.
The additional civilian personnel would take the total of non-Defence
people in Afghanistan to 52 (including the 30 in Uruzgan)—DFAT, AusAID and AFP.
Defence explained that the deployment of additional DFAT personnel complemented
and would support Australia's substantial military, policing and aid
Australia is committed to making Afghanistan its third largest recipient
(in volume) of Australian ODA.
Australia's total ODA for Afghanistan was expected to be just over $200 million
for 2012–13 climbing to $250 million for 2015–16.
Importantly, Australia has allocated and continues to direct a significant
portion of its aid assistance to Afghanistan through the World Bank
administered Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund (ARTF). Australia's future
contribution to Afghanistan is discussed in Part III of the report.
The Bonn Agreement reached at the end of 2001 recognised the important
role that the international community would have in helping the interim
authority of Afghanistan start to rebuild the country. In a number of
subsequent gatherings, the international community continued to offer its
support and commit to the effective delivery of assistance.
Australia became part of the international donor community pledged to
assist Afghanistan with its rehabilitation, recovery and reconstruction. Since
2001, Australia's ODA to Afghanistan has moved through three broad and
overlapping phases. The first involved AusAID and, to a lesser extent, DIAC
with Australia's overall expenditure well below $30 million. Much of this aid
was funnelled through NGOs and multinational organisations.
The second phase saw an increase in Australian funding with the ADF
taking on an active reconstruction role in Uruzgan. Australia also increased
the number of civilian personnel on the ground in Afghanistan including a small
number of AFP officers and opened an embassy in Kabul.
In August 2010, Australia assumed leadership of the Uruzgan PRT which ushered
in the beginning of the third phase. During this period there was a growing
emphasis on training and mentoring with the aim of helping the Government of
Afghanistan develop its capacity to take over responsibility for delivering
basic services and maintain its own security.
Clearly, Australia has made a substantial effort to help Afghans rebuild
their country. The main question before the committee, however, is the extent
to which this assistance has been effective. Before the committee examines in
detail the effectiveness of Australia's contribution to Afghanistan's recovery,
it considers the major obstacles to delivering assistance to that country. In
the following chapter, the committee looks at impediments to the effective
provision of aid generated from within Afghanistan itself and then by the donor
Remoteness and insecurity are two of the many challenges
for organisations seeking to deliver development assistance to Afghan
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