How and where does the Taliban make money in Afghanistan? Experts say that the Taliban runs a parallel power with the Afghan government in Afghanistan. And this earns the Taliban billions of rupees. The Taliban were thrown out by US-led forces from Afghanistan in 2001.
For the past several decades, America has waged a fight against the Taliban in Afghanistan. But now there is an indication that the US government is withdrawing its troops from there. And there can be an agreement between the Taliban and the United States at any time. Experts are not expecting much from the recent Qatar meeting. He said that this is the first meeting right now. And it would be dishonest to expect more from it.
Experts say that the American government has to talk to the Taliban about women’s rights too. Which is a serious issue. The Taliban believe that women should live according to Sharia law. And strict restrictions should apply to them. Which is not acceptable to the US government.
But how did the Taliban become so strong in Afghanistan. And what are the means of income for that? Let’s talk about it.
You can gauge the strength of the Taliban by the fact that it has an army of 60,000 men. Where does the Taliban ultimately get the money to operate such a large army?
Taliban collects tax from public
Actually, the answer from where the Taliban earns money in Afghanistan is very difficult, but still experts believe that the Taliban have a complete tax system. Through which he collects tax from public and people. According to a recent report, control of the Taliban has now increased even more in Afghanistan.
According to a report published in BBC, the annual income of Taliban was ₹ 28 billion in 2011 which has now increased to ₹ 105 billion. This income is huge in itself. And enough to run an army of 60,000 fighters.
It is believed that the Taliban in Afghanistan earn large amounts of money from drugs. He makes a large amount of money by selling narcotics such as hashish hemp heroin. Recently, Afghanistan and the US military jointly took action on their recoveries, from where the Taliban earns money by selling intoxicants. But recently a report was released by uno. And it warned that it is not that only the Taliban make money from drugs. It has many other means of income.
Opium taxation and extortion from the public
Opium is the main source of taxation and public-generated Taliban income. The Taliban earn large amounts of money from here in Afghanistan. And this is the reason why the Taliban’s earnings are increasing continuously due to the strong hold in the public.
Every year a large amount of opium is cultivated in Afghanistan. And Afghanistan is the world’s largest opium producing country.
If we talk about the total revenue from opium in Afghanistan, then it is up to 210 billion rupees. And most of it goes to the Taliban. Opium cultivation is believed to be the main source of income for the Taliban. Those who cultivate opium have to pay a certain amount to the Taliban. Apart from this, the Taliban imposes taxes on everything till transportation and selling. Because of this the Taliban’s earnings have increased so much. The Taliban charges 10% tax from poppy farmers.
It is believed that the Taliban also runs large labs to convert opium into heroin. So that his earnings increase.
US bombing drug laboratories
After Donald Trump became president in the US, the stance against the Taliban has become even tighter. Recently, US forces took aggressive action and bombed Taliban targets where opium is converted into heroin.
The US military believes that 60% of the Taliban’s drugs come from the drug trade.
The US government claimed in 2018 that it had destroyed about 400 to 500 drug labs run by the Taliban. And most of these labs are from southern Helmand province. This is the area where the Taliban has more control.
The same report claimed that the US has almost completely stopped a quarter of Taliban earnings, although the Taliban consistently denies that it makes money from the drug trade. The Taliban say that when he was in power. Then he banned the opium business altogether.
What other Taliban sources of income?
According to a report in the BBC, the Taliban are active in 70% of the territory in Afghanistan. The Taliban collects direct taxes from these areas to the public. At the same time, the Taliban continue to collect taxes from telecom and power companies. In an interview to the BBC, the head of a power company had said that the Taliban earns about Rs 14 crore by selling electricity almost every year.
The Taliban recently issued an open letter. And it said that if the traders want to do business, they have to pay tax to the Taliban. And especially in areas where the Taliban have direct control.
Taliban is earning crores of rupees from mining
Mining is also the Taliban’s main source of income. However, due to the ongoing war in Afghanistan, mining is not done on a large scale. But even then small and small areas are being mined legally and illegally. The Taliban earns Rs 70 crore every year from mining mines located in southern Helmand province. This is stated in a report released by uno.
At the same time, according to the officials of the Government of Afghanistan, the Taliban earns about 350 crore rupees every year from mining all over the country.
Taliban income from foreign sources
The US and Afghanistan governments have been consistently saying that the Taliban continue to receive financial support from countries such as Iran, Iraq, Pakistan and Russia, although they flatly deny this. At the same time, people living in countries like Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Qatar also provide financial help to the Taliban permanently. Experts say it is difficult to estimate Taliban income accurately. But even as a rough estimate, the Taliban earns 35 billion rupees every year.