I am very honoured to have been appointed as Ambassador of Canada to the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan.
Canada’s whole-of-government engagement in Afghanistan has been like no other in our history. Through our investments in securing and rebuilding Afghanistan, we have made a difference in the lives of the Afghan people. This is especially true in Kandahar province, where Canada led the security and reconstruction efforts between 2006 and 2011.
Today, through the work of our diplomats, development workers, police officers, and members of the Canadian Forces serving in Afghanistan, we remain very engaged in building a better future for Afghanistan.
Canada’s current engagement in Afghanistan is focussed on education and health programs, advancing security, the rule of law and human rights, promoting regional diplomacy, and helping deliver humanitarian assistance to those in need. Furthermore, Canada is committed to improving the lives of Afghan women and girls, with a particular focus on their health, education and human rights.
In the area of security, Canada is building on our operational experience through our contribution of up to 950 trainers to the NATO Training Mission-Afghanistan (NTM-A), to which we are the second largest contributor after the United States. Our civilian police mission is also very active and 45 Canadian officers are serving in Kabul and at locations across Afghanistan.
Essential for Afghanistan’s future is the effective transition of responsibility for national security to strong, stable and sustainable Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF). As announced at the NATO Summit in Chicago, the Government of Canada will contribute $110 million per year over three years (2015-2017) to help fund and sustain the ANSF following the end of Canada’s training mission in March 2014.
Canada has made it clear that a successful transition will also require an increased commitment from the Government of Afghanistan to strengthen governance, combat corruption, enhance the rule of law, and meet its domestic and international human rights obligations. This need is particularly acute with respect to the rights and status of women. We are engaged in supporting Afghanistan in many of these areas.
Recognizing the potential that Afghanistan can realize as a regional economic hub for commerce, transit and energy corridors, the Government of Canada will continue to support regional cooperation and strengthened border management. And as Afghanistan continues to develop an enabling environment for private sector-led economic growth, we will encourage Canadian investment in Afghanistan’s resource extraction industry as a means to bring benefits to both our countries.
We have a very dynamic and capable team at the Embassy of Canada which is committed to the important relationship between our nations. I invite you to explore our website, and discover its numerous dimensions.
Ambassador of Canada to the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan.