Saturday, August 11, 2007

On the ground in Afghanistan (Part 11)

Mike Skinner's account of his experiences in Afghanistan (intro here).

June 27 (excerpts):

...Privatisation is an important issue for Afghanis. Like every other Western-controlled state-building project in recent years, the international financial community demands the privatisation of state enterprises in Afghanistan. The Land Titling and Economic Restructuring of Afghanistan (LTERA) estimates at least 14,550 people will be put out of work during the restructuring process. The World Bank and the German Agency for Technical Cooperation have guaranteed a "Social Safety Net" for terminated state employees, but I suspect, based on my research in Guatemala and reams of analysis by researchers elsewhere, these severance payments will not adequately compensate families...
If the experience in Afghanistan will be like elsewhere, it is highly likely that many of these state jobs will not actually disappear, but will instead be casualised during privatisation – merely transformed from steady, relatively well-paying pensionable work with benefits to become contingent casual work. I also suspect, as in other cases around the world, the official estimates of the number of workers likely to be
terminated is likely unrealistically low... (full entry here)

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