America Comes to Afghanistan…pre-bin Laden’s Demise

Even before Osama bin Laden plunged to his death, it seemed the big Apple may have taken a little trip and landed somewhere soft and cozy in Afghanistan.  Last month, PepsiCo – possibly one of the most American of American companies – set up shop in the country.  It signed “an exclusive deal with the Dubai based Alokozay Group to manufacture and distribute popular PepsiCo beverages such as Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, Mountain Dew and 7-UP in Afghanistan.” To render this a reality, the Afghanistan province of Kabul will be home to a $60m beverage bottling plant that is hoped to begin work March of next year.

While the United States of America hasn’t exactly been popular in Afghanistan over the years, things are definitely changing.  With a US presence in the land, there is lots of good news ahead for the average Afghan.  Apart from getting American financial backing for establishments such as school buildings, since the best assistance is when one helps one help themselves, this latest venture of introducing the PepsiCo franchise into Kabul – that is set to directly lead to 800 jobs – has to make America popular in Afghanistan.  For individuals such as Hamed Wardak, who not only work on improving relations between Afghanistan and America but also attempt to enhance the quality of life for Afghans, the franchise and job creation it will lead to is fantastic news.

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Afghanistan Education Developments

Afghanistan has developed a lot in recent years, especially in the field of education. This means that it will likely lead to an improved quality of life for the people since the better educated they are, the more job opportunities they are likely to receive.  Such advancement is exactly the kind of activity Hamed Wardak tries to achieve to make life easier and better for Afghans.  Just a couple of weeks ago, in an unprecedented move, Khost, the country’s eastern province officially opened its doors to the Pamir Institute which is the first one of its kind in the province.  Until now it has never had a place offering private higher education. Founded by Profesor Syed Karim Shah Nekmal, the school is to “offer higher education in computer science, language and literature as well as economics.”
As well, there are to be two school buildings constructed in Kapisa, an eastern province of Afghanistan marked by a foundation stone laying ceremony.  The Allah Mohammad Shaheed High School will have six classrooms and one administrative room and the Qari Mir Asman High School will have eight classrooms and four administrative rooms.