Afghanistan’s banks shaken after Taliban takeover

Banks in Afghanistan have a crucial role to play in the country’s recovery from the crisis. Yet, the future remains uncertain, even for them as doubts grow over things such as liquidity, employment of female staff as Taliban assumed control of power in the country.

According to an announcement credited to a Taliban spokesman on Tuesday, banks were supposed to open immediately after the mandatory ten days long closure which brought the country’s financial system ground to a complete stop. 

The closure became necessary when the Western-backed government fell apart and U.S. and allied troops continued to pull out of the territory.

Despite that announcement, there are no indications yet that banking services will reopen or normalize anytime soon, as large crowds continue to fill the streets outside of banks in Kabul.

“The banks continue to be closed – with no clear signs of reopening, they have run out of money. Afghanistan’s banking system is now in a state of collapse, and people are running out of money,” said Gazal Gailani, trade and economic adviser at the Afghan embassy in London.

Many rural localities are unbanked and unaffected by the closures. However, it poses a big problem to employees in the urban centers where employees get paid in their banks. 

This puts workers in a tough spot as it becomes harder to navigate a cash-based economy with money locked in closed banks.

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