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Afghanistan’s ambitious plan to build a brand new capital city in Kabul

By Srimal Fernando, Global Editor
Mr Ajmal Shums (l) speaking to The Diplomatic Society Global Editor Mr Srimal Fernando (c) and Mr Jalal Shums(r)

The government of Afghanistan is laying the groundwork for its new city project in Kabul, which is set to help deal with the urbanization pressure. Afghanistan is set to reveal plans for a new capital city just outside central Kabul. The Kabul New City (KNC) project will be the most significant enterprise unveiled by the Afghan  government. The move is expected to recast the urban landscape of the country. Mr Ajmal Shums, one of the Directors of the Kabul New City Project is a gentleman who thinks big. In an interview Mr Ajmal Shums said, “Though dozens of projects are in the works around the country, the biggest by far is the Kabul New City project. The  new city  will be built next to the existing Kabul city by 2025. The multi-phased Kabul New City is a visionary project on huge scale that will bolster development in our country and the new city is planned to accommodate about three  million people”.  

The Kabul New City (KNC) project (Image source Dehsabz - Barikab City Development Authority)  

The Kabul New City, is approximately 1.5 times larger than the existing Kabul City and is strategically placed between Bagram Airbase and Kabul International Airport. It is mainly located in the province of Kabul. A key program of Kabul City Phase one development is the planning and construction of 80,000 housing units for 400,000 residents in Dehsabz south area. Mr Shums revealed that the  Government of Japan has been the major donor to the project that has provided financial support for the planning and capacity building.

He further said that Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) played a key role in the Planning and designing of phase -I of the  new capital project.  Mr Shums said, “part of the strategy of the Kabul New City  project is to attract private investment into the new city development project. According to the Master Plan, the private sector shares around 70 percent of the financial needs of the New City Development.”

“Constructing the new capital will need millions of dollars in foreign direct investment of the whole project” Mr Ajmal Shums  said.  “A website for the new Kabul New City project is online at revealing additional details about the project”.

The ambitious Kabul New City project would effectively extend greater  Kabul in a move aimed at reducing chronic congestion in the current overcrowded capital city and  provide new industrial and commercial areas, government buildings, shops, retail, health care facilities,  residential areas and  jobs following the construction of the whole city.


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