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The tribulations of Delawari

By Eric Ellis

Afghanistan gets back to business

As Euromoney went to press at the end of August, the vagaries of Afghanistan’s fledgling political system – and the impact they might have on the country’s economic revival – were thrown in to sharp relief by parliament’s attempts to oust central bank governor Noorullah Delawari.

Delawari fell just three votes short of confirmation in a parliamentary vote. Observers say it is a problem in the Afghan parliament that technocrats such as Delawari are not well known, and much voting takes place along purely party political lines. Delawari is not politically affiliated.

Some will see the final outcome of the vote as a test of Afghan president Hamed Karzai’s power base – critics say he is weak when it comes to real political battles.

However, Karzai immediately responded by reinstating Delawari as acting governor of the central bank, saying there were no other viable candidates, and the banking and finance committee of parliament asked the president to formally re-nominate him as governor. A number of parliamentary groups immediately declared their support for Delawari.

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