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China vs. Afghanistan

Introduction

ChinaAfghanistan
Background

China's historical civilization dates from at least 1200 B.C.; from the 3rd century B.C. and for the next two millennia, China alternated between periods of unity and disunity under a succession of imperial dynasties. In the 19th and early 20th centuries, the country was beset by civil unrest, major famines, military defeats, and foreign occupation. After World War II, the Chinese Communist Party under MAO Zedong established an autocratic socialist system that, while ensuring China's sovereignty, imposed strict controls over everyday life and cost the lives of tens of millions of people. After 1978, MAO's successor DENG Xiaoping and other leaders focused on market-oriented economic development and by 2000 output had quadrupled. For much of the population, living standards have improved dramatically but political controls remain tight. Since the early 1990s, China has increased its global outreach and participation in international organizations.

Ahmad Shah DURRANI unified the Pashtun tribes and founded Afghanistan in 1747. The country served as a buffer between the British and Russian Empires until it won independence from notional British control in 1919. A brief experiment in increased democracy ended in a 1973 coup and a 1978 communist countercoup. The Soviet Union invaded in 1979 to support the tottering Afghan communist regime, touching off a long and destructive war. The USSR withdrew in 1989 under relentless pressure by internationally supported anti-communist mujahidin rebels. A series of subsequent civil wars saw Kabul finally fall in 1996 to the Taliban, a hardline Pakistani-sponsored movement that emerged in 1994 to end the country's civil war and anarchy. Following the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks, a US, Allied, and anti-Taliban Northern Alliance military action toppled the Taliban for sheltering Usama BIN LADIN.

A UN-sponsored Bonn Conference in 2001 established a process for political reconstruction that included the adoption of a new constitution, a presidential election in 2004, and National Assembly elections in 2005. In December 2004, Hamid KARZAI became the first democratically elected president of Afghanistan, and the National Assembly was inaugurated the following December. KARZAI was reelected in August 2009 for a second term. The 2014 presidential election was the country's first to include a runoff, which featured the top two vote-getters from the first round, Abdullah ABDULLAH and Ashraf GHANI. Throughout the summer of 2014, their campaigns disputed the results and traded accusations of fraud, leading to a US-led diplomatic intervention that included a full vote audit as well as political negotiations between the two camps. In September 2014, GHANI and ABDULLAH agreed to form the Government of National Unity, with GHANI inaugurated as president and ABDULLAH elevated to the newly-created position of chief executive officer. The day after the inauguration, the GHANI administration signed the US-Afghan Bilateral Security Agreement and NATO Status of Forces Agreement, which provide the legal basis for the post-2014 international military presence in Afghanistan. After two postponements, the next presidential election was held in September 2019.

The Taliban remains a serious challenge for the Afghan Government in almost every province. The Taliban still considers itself the rightful government of Afghanistan, and it remains a capable and confident insurgent force fighting for the withdrawal of foreign military forces from Afghanistan, establishment of sharia law, and rewriting of the Afghan constitution. In 2019, negotiations between the US and the Taliban in Doha entered their highest level yet, building on momentum that began in late 2018. Underlying the negotiations is the unsettled state of Afghan politics, and prospects for a sustainable political settlement remain unclear.

Geography

ChinaAfghanistan
LocationEastern Asia, bordering the East China Sea, Korea Bay, Yellow Sea, and South China Sea, between North Korea and VietnamSouthern Asia, north and west of Pakistan, east of Iran
Geographic coordinates35 00 N, 105 00 E33 00 N, 65 00 E
Map referencesAsiaAsia
Areatotal: 9,596,960 sq km

land: 9,326,410 sq km

water: 270,550 sq km
total: 652,230 sq km

land: 652,230 sq km

water: 0 sq km
Area - comparativeslightly smaller than the USalmost six times the size of Virginia; slightly smaller than Texas
Land boundariestotal: 22,457 km

border countries (14): Afghanistan 91 km, Bhutan 477 km, Burma 2129 km, India 2659 km, Kazakhstan 1765 km, North Korea 1352 km, Kyrgyzstan 1063 km, Laos 475 km, Mongolia 4630 km, Nepal 1389 km, Pakistan 438 km, Russia (northeast) 4133 km and Russia (northwest) 46 km, Tajikistan 477 km, Vietnam 1297 km
total: 5,987 km

border countries (6): China 91 km, Iran 921 km, Pakistan 2670 km, Tajikistan 1357 km, Turkmenistan 804 km, Uzbekistan 144 km
Coastline14,500 km0 km (landlocked)
Maritime claimsterritorial sea: 12 nm

contiguous zone: 24 nm

exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin
none (landlocked)
Climateextremely diverse; tropical in south to subarctic in northarid to semiarid; cold winters and hot summers
Terrainmostly mountains, high plateaus, deserts in west; plains, deltas, and hills in eastmostly rugged mountains; plains in north and southwest
Elevation extremeshighest point: Mount Everest (highest peak in Asia and highest point on earth above sea level) 8,849 m

lowest point: Turpan Pendi -154 m

mean elevation: 1,840 m
highest point: Noshak 7,492 m

lowest point: Amu Darya 258 m

mean elevation: 1,884 m
Natural resourcescoal, iron ore, helium, petroleum, natural gas, arsenic, bismuth, cobalt, cadmium, ferrosilicon, gallium, germanium, hafnium, indium, lithium, mercury, tantalum, tellurium, tin, titanium, tungsten, antimony, manganese, magnesium, molybdenum, selenium, strontium, vanadium, magnetite, aluminum, lead, zinc, rare earth elements, uranium, hydropower potential (world's largest), arable landnatural gas, petroleum, coal, copper, chromite, talc, barites, sulfur, lead, zinc, iron ore, salt, precious and semiprecious stones, arable land
Land useagricultural land: 54.7% (2018 est.)

arable land: 11.3% (2018 est.)

permanent crops: 1.6% (2018 est.)

permanent pasture: 41.8% (2018 est.)

forest: 22.3% (2018 est.)

other: 23% (2018 est.)
agricultural land: 58.1% (2018 est.)

arable land: 11.8% (2018)

permanent crops: 0.3% (2018)

permanent pasture: 46% (2018)

forest: 1.85% (2018 est.)

other: 40.1% (2018)
Irrigated land690,070 sq km (2012)32,080 sq km (2012)
Natural hazards

frequent typhoons (about five per year along southern and eastern coasts); damaging floods; tsunamis; earthquakes; droughts; land subsidence

volcanism: China contains some historically active volcanoes including Changbaishan (also known as Baitoushan, Baegdu, or P'aektu-san), Hainan Dao, and Kunlun although most have been relatively inactive in recent centuries

damaging earthquakes occur in Hindu Kush mountains; flooding; droughts
Environment - current issuesair pollution (greenhouse gases, sulfur dioxide particulates) from reliance on coal produces acid rain; China is the world's largest single emitter of carbon dioxide from the burning of fossil fuels; water shortages, particularly in the north; water pollution from untreated wastes; coastal destruction due to land reclamation, industrial development, and aquaculture; deforestation and habitat destruction; poor land management leads to soil erosion, landslides, floods, droughts, dust storms, and desertification; trade in endangered specieslimited natural freshwater resources; inadequate supplies of potable water; soil degradation; overgrazing; deforestation (much of the remaining forests are being cut down for fuel and building materials); desertification; air and water pollution in overcrowded urban areas
Environment - international agreementsparty to: Antarctic-Environmental Protection, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Climate Change-Paris Agreement, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping-London Convention, Marine Dumping-London Protocol, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 2006, Wetlands, Whaling

signed, but not ratified: Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Climate Change-Paris Agreement, Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Dumping-London Convention, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection

signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea, Marine Life Conservation
Geography - notenote 1: world's fourth largest country (after Russia, Canada, and US) and largest country situated entirely in Asia; Mount Everest on the border with Nepal is the world's tallest peak above sea level

note 2: the largest cave chamber in the world is the Miao Room, in the Gebihe cave system at China's Ziyun Getu He Chuandong National Park, which encloses some 10.78 million cu m (380.7 million cu ft) of volume

note 3: China appears to have been the center of domestication for two of the world's leading cereal crops: millet in the north along the Yellow River and rice in the south along the lower or middle Yangtze River
landlocked; the Hindu Kush mountains that run northeast to southwest divide the northern provinces from the rest of the country; the highest peaks are in the northern Vakhan (Wakhan Corridor)
Total renewable water resources2,840,220,000,000 cubic meters (2017 est.)65.33 billion cubic meters (2017 est.)
Population distributionoverwhelming majority of the population is found in the eastern half of the country; the west, with its vast mountainous and desert areas, remains sparsely populated; though ranked first in the world in total population, overall density is less than that of many other countries in Asia and Europe; high population density is found along the Yangtze and Yellow River valleys, the Xi Jiang River delta, the Sichuan Basin (around Chengdu), in and around Beijing, and the industrial area around Shenyangpopulations tend to cluster in the foothills and periphery of the rugged Hindu Kush range; smaller groups are found in many of the country's interior valleys; in general, the east is more densely settled, while the south is sparsely populated

Demographics

ChinaAfghanistan
Population1,397,897,720 (July 2021 est.)37,466,414 (July 2021 est.)
Age structure0-14 years: 17.29% (male 129,296,339/female 111,782,427)

15-24 years: 11.48% (male 86,129,841/female 73,876,148)

25-54 years: 46.81% (male 333,789,731/female 318,711,557)

55-64 years: 12.08% (male 84,827,645/female 83,557,507)

65 years and over: 12.34% (male 81,586,490/female 90,458,292) (2020 est.)
0-14 years: 40.62% (male 7,562,703/female 7,321,646)

15-24 years: 21.26% (male 3,960,044/female 3,828,670)

25-54 years: 31.44% (male 5,858,675/female 5,661,887)

55-64 years: 4.01% (male 724,597/female 744,910)

65 years and over: 2.68% (male 451,852/female 528,831) (2020 est.)
Median agetotal: 38.4 years

male: 37.5 years

female: 39.4 years (2020 est.)
total: 19.5 years

male: 19.4 years

female: 19.5 years (2020 est.)
Population growth rate0.26% (2021 est.)2.34% (2021 est.)
Birth rate11.3 births/1,000 population (2021 est.)36.08 births/1,000 population (2021 est.)
Death rate8.26 deaths/1,000 population (2021 est.)12.57 deaths/1,000 population (2021 est.)
Net migration rate-0.43 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2021 est.)-0.1 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2021 est.)
Sex ratioat birth: 1.11 male(s)/female

0-14 years: 1.16 male(s)/female

15-24 years: 1.17 male(s)/female

25-54 years: 1.05 male(s)/female

55-64 years: 1.02 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.9 male(s)/female

total population: 1.06 male(s)/female (2020 est.)
at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female

0-14 years: 1.03 male(s)/female

15-24 years: 1.03 male(s)/female

25-54 years: 1.03 male(s)/female

55-64 years: 0.97 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.85 male(s)/female

total population: 1.03 male(s)/female (2020 est.)
Infant mortality ratetotal: 11.15 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 11.6 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 10.64 deaths/1,000 live births (2021 est.)
total: 106.75 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 115.21 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 97.86 deaths/1,000 live births (2021 est.)
Life expectancy at birthtotal population: 76.31 years

male: 74.23 years

female: 78.62 years (2021 est.)
total population: 53.25 years

male: 51.73 years

female: 54.85 years (2021 est.)
Total fertility rate1.6 children born/woman (2021 est.)4.72 children born/woman (2021 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rateNA<.1% (2020 est.)
Nationalitynoun: Chinese (singular and plural)

adjective: Chinese
noun: Afghan(s)

adjective: Afghan
Ethnic groupsHan Chinese 91.6%, Zhuang 1.3%, other (includes Hui, Manchu, Uighur, Miao, Yi, Tujia, Tibetan, Mongol, Dong, Buyei, Yao, Bai, Korean, Hani, Li, Kazakh, Dai, and other nationalities) 7.1% (2010 est.)

note: the Chinese Government officially recognizes 56 ethnic groups
Pashtun, Tajik, Hazara, Uzbek, other (includes smaller numbers of Baloch, Turkmen, Nuristani, Pamiri, Arab, Gujar, Brahui, Qizilbash, Aimaq, Pashai, and Kyrghyz) (2015)

note: current statistical data on the sensitive subject of ethnicity in Afghanistan are not available, and ethnicity data from small samples of respondents to opinion polls are not a reliable alternative; Afghanistan's 2004 constitution recognizes 14 ethnic groups: Pashtun, Tajik, Hazara, Uzbek, Baloch, Turkmen, Nuristani, Pamiri, Arab, Gujar, Brahui, Qizilbash, Aimaq, and Pashai
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDSNA12,000 (2020 est.)
Religionsfolk religion 21.9%, Buddhist 18.3%, Christian 5.2%, Muslim 2%, Hindu < 0.1%, Jewish < 0.1%, other 0.7% (includes Daoist (Taoist)), unaffiliated 51.8% (2020 est.)

note: officially atheist
Muslim 99.7% (Sunni 84.7 - 89.7%, Shia 10 - 15%), other 0.3% (2009 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deathsNA<1,000 (2020 est.)
LanguagesStandard Chinese or Mandarin (official; Putonghua, based on the Beijing dialect), Yue (Cantonese), Wu (Shanghainese), Minbei (Fuzhou), Minnan (Hokkien-Taiwanese), Xiang, Gan, Hakka dialects, minority languages (see Ethnic groups entry); note - Zhuang is official in Guangxi Zhuang, Yue is official in Guangdong, Mongolian is official in Nei Mongol, Uighur is official in Xinjiang Uygur, Kyrgyz is official in Xinjiang Uygur, and Tibetan is official in Xizang (Tibet)

major-language sample(s):
????  –  ??????????? (Mandarin)

The World Factbook, the indispensable source for basic information.
Afghan Persian or Dari (official) 78% (Dari functions as the lingua franca), Pashto (official) 50%, Uzbek 10%, English 5%, Turkmen 2%, Urdu 2%, Pashayi 1%, Nuristani 1%, Arabic 1%, Balochi 1%, other <1% (2017 est.)

major-language sample(s):

???? ????? ????? ????? ????? ???? ??????? ????? (Dari)

? ???? ? ??????? ????? ?????? ???????? ????? ????? ??????- (Pashto)

The World Factbook, the indispensable source for basic information.

note 1: data represent most widely spoken languages; shares sum to more than 100% because there is much bilingualism in the country and because respondents were allowed to select more than one language

note 2: the Turkic languages Uzbek and Turkmen, as well as Balochi, Pashayi, Nuristani, and Pamiri are the third official languages in areas where the majority speaks them

Literacydefinition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 96.8%

male: 98.5%

female: 95.2% (2018)
definition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 43%

male: 55.5%

female: 29.8% (2018)
Major infectious diseasesdegree of risk: high (2020)

food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever

vectorborne diseases: Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever, Japanese encephalitis

soil contact diseases: hantaviral hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome (HFRS)

note: a new coronavirus is causing an outbreak of respiratory illness (COVID-19) in China; illness with this virus has ranged from mild to severe with fatalities reported; the US Department of State has issued a do not travel advisory for China due to COVID-19; the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has also recommended against travel to China and published additional guidance at https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices/warning/novel-coronavirus-china; the US Department of Homeland Security has issued instructions requiring US passengers who have been in China to travel through select airports where the US Government has implemented enhanced screening procedures; as of 19 July 2021, China has reported a total of 119,784 cases of COVID-19 or 8.14 cumulative cases of COVID-19 per 100,000 population with 0.38 cumulative deaths per 100,000 population; as of 10 June 2021, 43.21% of the population has received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine
degree of risk: intermediate (2020)

food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever

vectorborne diseases: Crimea-Congo hemorrhagic fever, malaria
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)total: 14 years

male: 14 years

female: 14 years (2015)
total: 10 years

male: 13 years

female: 8 years (2018)
Education expendituresNA4.1% of GDP (2017)
Urbanizationurban population: 62.5% of total population (2021)

rate of urbanization: 1.78% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)

note: data do not include Hong Kong and Macau
urban population: 26.3% of total population (2021)

rate of urbanization: 3.34% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)
Drinking water sourceimproved: urban: 97.7% of population

rural: 87.8% of population

total: 92.8% of population

unimproved: urban: 2.3% of population

rural: 12.2% of population

total: 7.2% of population (2017 est.)
improved: urban: 95.9% of population

rural: 61.4% of population

total: 70.2% of population

unimproved: urban: 3.2% of population

rural: 38.6% of population

total: 38.6% of population (2017 est.)
Sanitation facility accessimproved: urban: 97.1% of population

rural: 82% of population

total: 90.7% of population

unimproved: urban: 2.4% of population

rural: 18% of population

total: 9.3% of population (2017 est.)
improved: urban: 83.6% of population

rural: 43% of population

total: 53.2% of population

unimproved: urban: 16.4% of population

rural: 57% of population

total: 46.8% of population (2017 est.)
Major cities - population27.796 million Shanghai, 20.897 million BEIJING (capital), 16.382 million Chongqing, 13.794 million Tianjin, 13.635 million Guangzhou, 12.592 million Shenzhen (2021)4.336 million KABUL (capital) (2021)
Maternal mortality rate29 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)638 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight2.4% (2013)19.1% (2018)
Health expenditures5.4% (2018)9.4% (2018)
Physicians density1.98 physicians/1,000 population (2017)0.28 physicians/1,000 population (2016)
Hospital bed density4.3 beds/1,000 population (2017)0.4 beds/1,000 population (2017)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate6.2% (2016)5.5% (2016)
Contraceptive prevalence rate84.5% (2017)18.9% (2018)

note:  percent of women aged 12-49
Dependency ratiostotal dependency ratio: 42.2

youth dependency ratio: 25.2

elderly dependency ratio: 17

potential support ratio: 5.9 (2020 est.)

data do not include Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan
total dependency ratio: 88.8

youth dependency ratio: 75.3

elderly dependency ratio: 4.8

potential support ratio: 21 (2020 est.)

Government

ChinaAfghanistan
Country nameconventional long form: People's Republic of China

conventional short form: China

local long form: Zhonghua Renmin Gongheguo

local short form: Zhongguo

abbreviation: PRC

etymology: English name derives from the Qin (Chin) rulers of the 3rd century B.C., who comprised the first imperial dynasty of ancient China; the Chinese name Zhongguo translates as "Central Nation" or "Middle Kingdom"
conventional long form: Islamic Republic of Afghanistan

conventional short form: Afghanistan

local long form: Jamhuri-ye Islami-ye Afghanistan

local short form: Afghanistan

former: Republic of Afghanistan

etymology: the name "Afghan" originally referred to the Pashtun people (today it is understood to include all the country's ethnic groups), while the suffix "-stan" means "place of" or "country"; so Afghanistan literally means the "Land of the Afghans"
Government typecommunist party-led statepresidential Islamic republic
Capitalname: Beijing

geographic coordinates: 39 55 N, 116 23 E

time difference: UTC+8 (13 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)

note: China is the largest country (in terms of area) with just one time zone; before 1949 it was divided into five

etymology: the Chinese meaning is "Northern Capital"
name: Kabul

geographic coordinates: 34 31 N, 69 11 E

time difference: UTC+4.5 (9.5 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)

daylight saving time: does not observe daylight savings time

etymology: named for the Kabul River, but the river's name is of unknown origin
Administrative divisions

23 provinces (sheng, singular and plural), 5 autonomous regions (zizhiqu, singular and plural), and 4 municipalities (shi, singular and plural)

provinces: Anhui, Fujian, Gansu, Guangdong, Guizhou, Hainan, Hebei, Heilongjiang, Henan, Hubei, Hunan, Jiangsu, Jiangxi, Jilin, Liaoning, Qinghai, Shaanxi, Shandong, Shanxi, Sichuan, Yunnan, Zhejiang; (see note on Taiwan)

autonomous regions: Guangxi, Nei Mongol (Inner Mongolia), Ningxia, Xinjiang Uyghur, Xizang (Tibet)

municipalities: Beijing, Chongqing, Shanghai, Tianjin



note: China considers Taiwan its 23rd province; see separate entries for the special administrative regions of Hong Kong and Macau

34 provinces (welayat, singular - welayat); Badakhshan, Badghis, Baghlan, Balkh, Bamyan, Daykundi, Farah, Faryab, Ghazni, Ghor, Helmand, Herat, Jowzjan, Kabul, Kandahar, Kapisa, Khost, Kunar, Kunduz, Laghman, Logar, Nangarhar, Nimroz, Nuristan, Paktika, Paktiya, Panjshir, Parwan, Samangan, Sar-e Pul, Takhar, Uruzgan, Wardak, Zabul
Independence1 October 1949 (People's Republic of China established); notable earlier dates: 221 B.C. (unification under the Qin Dynasty); 1 January 1912 (Qing Dynasty replaced by the Republic of China)19 August 1919 (from UK control over Afghan foreign affairs)
National holidayNational Day (anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China), 1 October (1949)Independence Day, 19 August (1919)
Constitutionhistory: several previous; latest promulgated 4 December 1982

amendments: proposed by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress or supported by more than one fifth of the National People’s Congress membership; passage requires more than two-thirds majority vote of the Congress membership; amended several times, last in 2018
history: several previous; latest drafted 14 December 2003 - 4 January 2004, signed 16 January 2004, ratified 26 January 2004

amendments: proposed by a commission formed by presidential decree followed by the convention of a Grand Council (Loya Jirga) decreed by the president; passage requires at least two-thirds majority vote of the Loya Jirga membership and endorsement by the president
Legal systemcivil law influenced by Soviet and continental European civil law systems; legislature retains power to interpret statutes; note - on 28 May 2020, the National People's Congress adopted the PRC Civil Code, which codifies personal relations and property relationsmixed legal system of civil, customary, and Islamic (sharia) law
Suffrage18 years of age; universal18 years of age; universal
Executive branchchief of state: President XI Jinping (since 14 March 2013); Vice President WANG Qishan (since 17 March 2018)

head of government: Premier LI Keqiang (since 16 March 2013); Executive Vice Premiers HAN Zheng (since 19 March 2018), SUN Chunlan (since 19 March 2018), LIU He (since 19 March 2018), HU Chunhua (since 19 March 2018)

cabinet: State Council appointed by National People's Congress

elections/appointments: president and vice president indirectly elected by National People's Congress for a 5-year term (no term limits); election last held on 17 March 2018 (next to be held in March 2023); premier nominated by president, confirmed by National People's Congress

election results: XI Jinping reelected president; National People's Congress vote - 2,970 (unanimously); WANG Qishan elected vice president with 2,969 votes
chief of state: president (vacant); President Ashraf GHANI departed the country on 15 August 2021; CEO Abdullah ABDULLAH, Dr. (since 29 September 2014); First Vice President Abdul Rashid DOSTAM (since 29 September 2014); Second Vice President Sarwar DANESH (since 29 September 2014); First Deputy CEO Khyal Mohammad KHAN; Second Deputy CEO Mohammad MOHAQQEQ; note - the president is both chief of state and head of government

head of government: president (vacant); President Ashraf GHANI departed the country on 15 August 2021; CEO Abdullah ABDULLAH, Dr. (since 29 September 2014); First Vice President Abdul Rashid DOSTAM (since 29 September 2014); Second Vice President Sarwar DANESH (since 29 September 2014); First Deputy CEO Khyal Mohammad KHAN; Second Deputy CEO Mohammad MOHAQQEQ

cabinet: Cabinet consists of 25 ministers appointed by the president, approved by the National Assembly

elections/appointments: president directly elected by absolute majority popular vote in 2 rounds if needed for a 5-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 28 September 2019

election results: Ashraf GHANI declared winner by the Independent Election Commission on 18 February 2020; Ashraf GHANI 50.6%, Abdullah ABDULLAH, Dr. 39.5%, other 0.9%

note: Ashraf GHANI left the country on 15 August 2021; no new leader has been announced
Legislative branchdescription: unicameral National People's Congress or Quanguo Renmin Daibiao Dahui (maximum of 3,000 seats; members indirectly elected by municipal, regional, and provincial people's congresses, and the People's Liberation Army; members serve 5-year terms); note - in practice, only members of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), its 8 allied independent parties, and CCP-approved independent candidates are elected

elections: last held in December 2017-February 2018 (next to be held in late 2022 to early 2023)

election results: percent of vote - NA; seats by party - NA; composition - men 2,238, women 742, percent of women 24.9%
description: bicameral National Assembly consists of:
Meshrano Jirga or House of Elders (102 seats; 34 members indirectly elected by absolute majority vote in 2 rounds if needed by district councils to serve 3-year terms, 34 indirectly elected by absolute majority vote in 2 rounds if needed by provincial councils to serve 4-year terms, and 34 appointed by the president from nominations by civic groups, political parties, and the public, of which 17 must be women, 2 must represent the disabled, and 2 must be Kuchi nomads; presidential appointees serve 5-year terms)
Wolesi Jirga or House of People (250 seats, including 68 reserved for women; members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies by proportional representation vote to serve 5-year terms)

elections: Meshrano Jirga - district councils - within 5 days of installation; provincial councils - within 15 days of installation; presidential appointees - within 2 weeks after the presidential inauguration (last held 10 January 2015); note - in early 2016, President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani extended their mandate until parliamentary and district elections are held.
Wolesi Jirga - last held on 20 October 2018) (next to be held in 2023)

election results:
Meshrano Jirga - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - NA; composition - men 85, women 17, percent of women 16.7%
Wolesi Jirga - percent of vote by party NA; seats by party - NA; composition - men 182, women 68, percent of women 27.2%; note - total National Assembly percent of women 24.1%

note: the constitution allows the government to convene a constitutional Loya Jirga (Grand Council) on issues of independence, national sovereignty, and territorial integrity; it consists of members of the National Assembly and chairpersons of the provincial and district councils; a Loya Jirga can amend provisions of the constitution and prosecute the president; no constitutional Loya Jirga has ever been held, and district councils have never been elected; the president appointed 34 members of the Meshrano Jirga that the district councils should have indirectly elected
Judicial branchhighest courts: Supreme People's Court (consists of over 340 judges, including the chief justice and 13 grand justices organized into a civil committee and tribunals for civil, economic, administrative, complaint and appeal, and communication and transportation cases)

judge selection and term of office: chief justice appointed by the People's National Congress (NPC); limited to 2 consecutive 5-year-terms; other justices and judges nominated by the chief justice and appointed by the Standing Committee of the NPC; term of other justices and judges determined by the NPC

subordinate courts: Higher People's Courts; Intermediate People's Courts; District and County People's Courts; Autonomous Region People's Courts; International Commercial Courts; Special People's Courts for military, maritime, transportation, and forestry issues

note: in late 2014, China unveiled a multi-year judicial reform program; progress continued in 2018
highest courts: Supreme Court or Stera Mahkama (consists of the supreme court chief and 8 justices organized into criminal, public security, civil, and commercial divisions or dewans)

judge selection and term of office: court chief and justices appointed by the president with the approval of the Wolesi Jirga; court chief and justices serve single 10-year terms

subordinate courts: Appeals Courts; Primary Courts; Special Courts for issues including narcotics, security, property, family, and juveniles
Political parties and leadersChinese Communist Party or CCP [XI Jinping]

note: China has 8 nominally independent small parties controlled by the CCP

note - the Ministry of Justice licensed 72 political parties as of April 2019 

International organization participationADB, AfDB (nonregional member), APEC, Arctic Council (observer), ARF, ASEAN (dialogue partner), BIS, BRICS, CDB, CICA, EAS, FAO, FATF, G-20, G-24 (observer), G-5, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, LAIA (observer), MIGA, MINURSO, MINUSMA, MONUSCO, NAM (observer), NSG, OAS (observer), OPCW, Pacific Alliance (observer), PCA, PIF (partner), SAARC (observer), SCO, SICA (observer), UN, UNAMID, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNFICYP, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNIFIL, UNMIL, UNMISS, UNOCI, UN Security Council (permanent), UNTSO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZCADB, CICA, CP, ECO, EITI (candidate country), FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (NGOs), ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO (correspondent), ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, NAM, OIC, OPCW, OSCE (partner), SAARC, SACEP, SCO (dialogue member), UN, UNAMA, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
Diplomatic representation in the USchief of mission: Ambassador QIN Gangas (since 29 July 2021)

chancery: 3505 International Place NW, Washington, DC 20008

telephone: [1] (202) 495-2266

FAX: [1] (202) 495-2138

email address and website:
chinaemppress_us@mfa.gov.cn

http://www.china-embassy.org/eng/

consulate(s) general: Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco; note - the US ordered closure of the Houston consulate in late July 2020
chief of mission: Ambassador Adela RAZ (since July 2021)

chancery: 2341 Wyoming Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008

telephone: [1] (202) 483-6410

FAX: [1] (202) 483-6488

email address and website:
info@afghanembassy.us

https://www.afghanembassy.us/

consulate(s) general: Los Angeles, New York, Washington, DC
Diplomatic representation from the USchief of mission: Ambassador (vacant); Chargé d’Affaires David MEALE (since July 2021)

embassy: 55 An Jia Lou Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing 100600

mailing address: 7300 Beijing Place, Washington DC  20521-7300

telephone: [86] (10) 8531-3000

FAX: [86] (10) 8531-4200

email address and website:
BeijingACS@state.gov

https://china.usembassy-china.org.cn/

consulate(s) general: Guangzhou, Shanghai, Shenyang, Wuhan; note - the Chinese Government ordered closure of the US consulate in Chengdu in late July 2020
chief of mission: Ambassador (vacant); Charge d'Affaires Ross WILSON (since 18 January 2020)

embassy: Bibi Mahru, Kabul

mailing address: 6180 Kabul Place, Washington DC  20521-6180

telephone: [00 93] (0) 700-10-8000

FAX: [00 93] (0) 700-108-564

email address and website:
KabulACS@state.gov

https://af.usembassy.gov/
Flag descriptionred with a large yellow five-pointed star and four smaller yellow five-pointed stars (arranged in a vertical arc toward the middle of the flag) in the upper hoist-side corner; the color red represents revolution, while the stars symbolize the four social classes - the working class, the peasantry, the urban petty bourgeoisie, and the national bourgeoisie (capitalists) - united under the Communist Party of Chinathree equal vertical bands of black (hoist side), red, and green, with the national emblem in white centered on the red band and slightly overlapping the other 2 bands; the center of the emblem features a mosque with pulpit and flags on either side, below the mosque are Eastern Arabic numerals for the solar year 1298 (1919 in the Gregorian calendar, the year of Afghan independence from the UK); this central image is circled by a border consisting of sheaves of wheat on the left and right, in the upper-center is an Arabic inscription of the Shahada (Muslim creed) below which are rays of the rising sun over the Takbir (Arabic expression meaning "God is great"), and at bottom center is a scroll bearing the name Afghanistan; black signifies the past, red is for the blood shed for independence, and green can represent either hope for the future, agricultural prosperity, or Islam

note: Afghanistan had more changes to its national flag in the 20th century - 19 by one count - than any other country; the colors black, red, and green appeared on most of them
National anthemname: "Yiyongjun Jinxingqu" (The March of the Volunteers)

lyrics/music: TIAN Han/NIE Er

note: adopted 1949; the anthem, though banned during the Cultural Revolution, is more commonly known as "Zhongguo Guoge" (Chinese National Song); it was originally the theme song to the 1935 Chinese movie, "Sons and Daughters in a Time of Storm"
name: "Milli Surood" (National Anthem)

lyrics/music: Abdul Bari JAHANI/Babrak WASA

note: adopted 2006; the 2004 constitution of the post-Taliban government mandated that a new national anthem should be written containing the phrase "Allahu Akbar" (God is Greatest) and mentioning the names of Afghanistan's ethnic groups
International law organization participationhas not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCthas not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
National symbol(s)dragon, giant panda; national colors: red, yellowlion; national colors: red, green, black
Citizenshipcitizenship by birth: no

citizenship by descent only: least one parent must be a citizen of China

dual citizenship recognized: no

residency requirement for naturalization: while naturalization is theoretically possible, in practical terms it is extremely difficult; residency is required but not specified
citizenship by birth: no

citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must have been born in - and continuously lived in - Afghanistan

dual citizenship recognized: no

residency requirement for naturalization: 5 years

Economy

ChinaAfghanistan
Economy - overview

Since the late 1970s, China has moved from a closed, centrally planned system to a more market-oriented one that plays a major global role. China has implemented reforms in a gradualist fashion, resulting in efficiency gains that have contributed to a more than tenfold increase in GDP since 1978. Reforms began with the phaseout of collectivized agriculture, and expanded to include the gradual liberalization of prices, fiscal decentralization, increased autonomy for state enterprises, growth of the private sector, development of stock markets and a modern banking system, and opening to foreign trade and investment. China continues to pursue an industrial policy, state support of key sectors, and a restrictive investment regime. From 2013 to 2017, China had one of the fastest growing economies in the world, averaging slightly more than 7% real growth per year. Measured on a purchasing power parity (PPP) basis that adjusts for price differences, China in 2017 stood as the largest economy in the world, surpassing the US in 2014 for the first time in modern history. China became the world's largest exporter in 2010, and the largest trading nation in 2013. Still, China's per capita income is below the world average.

In July 2005 moved to an exchange rate system that references a basket of currencies. From mid-2005 to late 2008, the renminbi (RMB) appreciated more than 20% against the US dollar, but the exchange rate remained virtually pegged to the dollar from the onset of the global financial crisis until June 2010, when Beijing announced it would resume a gradual appreciation. From 2013 until early 2015, the renminbi held steady against the dollar, but it depreciated 13% from mid-2015 until end-2016 amid strong capital outflows; in 2017 the RMB resumed appreciating against the dollar – roughly 7% from end-of-2016 to end-of-2017. In 2015, the People’s Bank of China announced it would continue to carefully push for full convertibility of the renminbi, after the currency was accepted as part of the IMF’s special drawing rights basket. However, since late 2015 the Chinese Government has strengthened capital controls and oversight of overseas investments to better manage the exchange rate and maintain financial stability.

The Chinese Government faces numerous economic challenges including: (a) reducing its high domestic savings rate and correspondingly low domestic household consumption; (b) managing its high corporate debt burden to maintain financial stability; (c) controlling off-balance sheet local government debt used to finance infrastructure stimulus; (d) facilitating higher-wage job opportunities for the aspiring middle class, including rural migrants and college graduates, while maintaining competitiveness; (e) dampening speculative investment in the real estate sector without sharply slowing the economy; (f) reducing industrial overcapacity; and (g) raising productivity growth rates through the more efficient allocation of capital and state-support for innovation. Economic development has progressed further in coastal provinces than in the interior, and by 2016 more than 169.3 million migrant workers and their dependents had relocated to urban areas to find work. One consequence of China’s population control policy known as the "one-child policy" - which was relaxed in 2016 to permit all families to have two children - is that China is now one of the most rapidly aging countries in the world. Deterioration in the environment - notably air pollution, soil erosion, and the steady fall of the water table, especially in the North - is another long-term problem. China continues to lose arable land because of erosion and urbanization. The Chinese Government is seeking to add energy production capacity from sources other than coal and oil, focusing on natural gas, nuclear, and clean energy development. In 2016, China ratified the Paris Agreement, a multilateral agreement to combat climate change, and committed to peak its carbon dioxide emissions between 2025 and 2030.

The government's 13th Five-Year Plan, unveiled in March 2016, emphasizes the need to increase innovation and boost domestic consumption to make the economy less dependent on government investment, exports, and heavy industry. However, China has made more progress on subsidizing innovation than rebalancing the economy. Beijing has committed to giving the market a more decisive role in allocating resources, but the Chinese Government’s policies continue to favor state-owned enterprises and emphasize stability. Chinese leaders in 2010 pledged to double China’s GDP by 2020, and the 13th Five Year Plan includes annual economic growth targets of at least 6.5% through 2020 to achieve that goal. In recent years, China has renewed its support for state-owned enterprises in sectors considered important to "economic security," explicitly looking to foster globally competitive industries. Chinese leaders also have undermined some market-oriented reforms by reaffirming the "dominant" role of the state in the economy, a stance that threatens to discourage private initiative and make the economy less efficient over time. The slight acceleration in economic growth in 2017—the first such uptick since 2010—gives Beijing more latitude to pursue its economic reforms, focusing on financial sector deleveraging and its Supply-Side Structural Reform agenda, first announced in late 2015.

Prior to 2001, Afghanistan was an extremely poor, landlocked, and foreign aid-dependent country. Increased domestic economic activity occurred following the US-led invasion, as well as significant international economic development assistance. This increased activity expanded access to water, electricity, sanitation, education, and health services, and fostered consistent growth in government revenues since 2014. While international security forces have been drawing down since 2012, with much higher U.S. forces’ drawdowns occurring since 2017, economic progress continues, albeit uneven across sectors and key economic indicators. After recovering from the 2018 drought and growing 3.9% in 2019, political instability, expiring international financial commitments, and the COVID-19 pandemic have wrought significant adversity on the Afghan economy, with a projected 5% contraction.

Current political parties’ power-sharing agreement following the September 2019 presidential elections as well as ongoing Taliban attacks and peace talks have led to Afghan economic instability. This instability, coupled with expiring international grant and assistance, endangers recent fiscal gains and has led to more internally displaced persons. In November 2020, Afghanistan secured $12 billion in additional international aid for 2021-2025, much of which is conditional upon Taliban peace progress. Additionally, Afghanistan continues to experience influxes of repatriating Afghanis, mostly from Iran, significantly straining economic and security institutions.

Afghanistan’s trade deficit remains at approximately 31% of GDP and is highly dependent on financing through grants and aid. While Afghan agricultural growth remains consistent, recent industrial and services growth have been enormously impacted by COVID-19 lockdowns and trade cessations. While trade with the People’s Republic of China has rapidly expanded in recent years, Afghanistan still relies heavily upon India and Pakistan as export partners but is more diverse in its import partners. Furthermore, Afghanistan still struggles to effectively enforce business contracts, facilitate easy tax collection, and enable greater international trade for domestic enterprises.

Current Afghan priorities focus on the following goals:

  • Securing international economic agreements, many of which are contingent on Taliban peace progress;
  • Increasing exports to $2 billion USD by 2023;
  • Continuing to expand government revenue collection;
  • Countering corruption and navigating challenges from the power-sharing agreement; and
  • Developing a strong private sector that can empower the economy.

GDP (purchasing power parity)$22,526,502,000,000 (2019 est.)

$21,229,363,000,000 (2018 est.)

$19,887,033,000,000 (2017 est.)

note: data are in 2010 dollars
$78.557 billion (2019 est.)

$75.6 billion (2018 est.)

$74.711 billion (2017 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars
GDP - real growth rate6.14% (2019 est.)

6.75% (2018 est.)

6.92% (2017 est.)
2.7% (2017 est.)

2.2% (2016 est.)

1% (2015 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$16,117 (2019 est.)

$15,243 (2018 est.)

$14,344 (2017 est.)

note: data are in 2010 dollars
$2,065 (2019 est.)

$2,034 (2018 est.)

$2,058 (2017 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars
GDP - composition by sectoragriculture: 7.9% (2017 est.)

industry: 40.5% (2017 est.)

services: 51.6% (2017 est.)
agriculture: 23% (2016 est.)

industry: 21.1% (2016 est.)

services: 55.9% (2016 est.)

note: data exclude opium production
Population below poverty line0.6% (2019 est.)54.5% (2016 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: 2.1%

highest 10%: 31.4% (2012)

note: data are for urban households only
lowest 10%: 3.8%

highest 10%: 24% (2008)
Inflation rate (consumer prices)2.8% (2019 est.)

2% (2018 est.)

1.5% (2017 est.)
5% (2017 est.)

4.4% (2016 est.)
Labor force774.71 million (2019 est.)

note: by the end of 2012, China's working age population (15-64 years) was 1.004 billion
8.478 million (2017 est.)
Labor force - by occupationagriculture: 27.7%

industry: 28.8%

services: 43.5% (2016 est.)
agriculture: 44.3%

industry: 18.1%

services: 37.6% (2017 est.)
Unemployment rate3.64% (2019 est.)

3.84% (2018 est.)

note: data are for registered urban unemployment, which excludes private enterprises and migrants
23.9% (2017 est.)

22.6% (2016 est.)
Distribution of family income - Gini index38.5 (2016 est.)

46.2 (2015 est.)
29.4 (2008)
Budgetrevenues: 2.553 trillion (2017 est.)

expenditures: 3.008 trillion (2017 est.)
revenues: 2.276 billion (2017 est.)

expenditures: 5.328 billion (2017 est.)
Industriesworld leader in gross value of industrial output; mining and ore processing, iron, steel, aluminum, and other metals, coal; machine building; armaments; textiles and apparel; petroleum; cement; chemicals; fertilizer; consumer products (including footwear, toys, and electronics); food processing; transportation equipment, including automobiles, railcars and locomotives, ships, aircraft; telecommunications equipment, commercial space launch vehicles, satellitessmall-scale production of bricks, textiles, soap, furniture, shoes, fertilizer, apparel, food products, non-alcoholic beverages, mineral water, cement; handwoven carpets; natural gas, coal, copper
Industrial production growth rate6.1% (2017 est.)-1.9% (2016 est.)
Agriculture - productsmaize, rice, vegetables, wheat, sugar cane, potatoes, cucumbers, tomatoes, watermelons, sweet potatoeswheat, milk, grapes, vegetables, potatoes, watermelons, melons, rice, onions, apples
Exports$2.49 trillion (2018)

$2.216 trillion (2017 est.)

$1.99 trillion (2016 est.)
$784 million (2017 est.)

$614.2 million (2016 est.)

note: not including illicit exports or reexports
Exports - commoditiesbroadcasting equipment, computers, integrated circuits, office machinery and parts, telephones (2019)gold, grapes, opium, fruits and nuts, insect resins, cotton, handwoven carpets, soapstone, scrap metal (2019)
Exports - partnersUnited States 17%, Hong Kong 10%, Japan 6% (2019)United Arab Emirates 45%, Pakistan 24%, India 22%, China 1% (2019)
Imports$2.14 trillion (2018)

$1.74 trillion (2017 est.)

$1.501 trillion (2016 est.)
$7.616 billion (2017 est.)

$6.16 billion (2016 est.)
Imports - commoditiescrude petroleum, integrated circuits, iron, natural gas, cars, gold (2019)wheat flours, broadcasting equipment, refined petroleum, rolled tobacco, aircraft parts, synthetic fabrics (2019)
Imports - partnersSouth Korea 9%, Japan 8%, Australia 7%, Germany 7%, US 7%, Taiwan 6% (2019)United Arab Emirates 23%, Pakistan 17%, India 13%, China 9%, United States 9%, Uzbekistan 7%, Kazakhstan 6% (2019)
Debt - external$2,027,950,000,000 (2019 est.)

$1,935,206,000,000 (2018 est.)
$284 million (FY10/11)
Exchange ratesRenminbi yuan (RMB) per US dollar -

6.5374 (2020 est.)

7.0403 (2019 est.)

6.8798 (2018 est.)

6.1434 (2014 est.)

6.1958 (2013 est.)
afghanis (AFA) per US dollar -

7.87 (2017 est.)

68.03 (2016 est.)

67.87 (2015)

61.14 (2014 est.)

57.25 (2013 est.)
Fiscal yearcalendar year21 December - 20 December
Public debt47% of GDP (2017 est.)

44.2% of GDP (2016 est.)

note: official data; data cover both central and local government debt, including debt officially recognized by China's National Audit Office report in 2011; data exclude policy bank bonds, Ministry of Railway debt, and China Asset Management Company debt
7% of GDP (2017 est.)

7.8% of GDP (2016 est.)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$3.236 trillion (31 December 2017 est.)

$3.098 trillion (31 December 2016 est.)
$7.187 billion (31 December 2017 est.)

$6.901 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Current Account Balance$141.335 billion (2019 est.)

$25.499 billion (2018 est.)
$1.014 billion (2017 est.)

$1.409 billion (2016 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate)$14,327,359,000,000 (2019 est.)

note: because China's exchange rate is determined by fiat rather than by market forces, the official exchange rate measure of GDP is not an accurate measure of China's output; GDP at the official exchange rate substantially understates the actual level of China's output vis-a-vis the rest of the world; in China's situation, GDP at purchasing power parity provides the best measure for comparing output across countries
$20.24 billion (2017 est.)
Taxes and other revenues21.3% (of GDP) (2017 est.)11.2% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-3.8% (of GDP) (2017 est.)-15.1% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
GDP - composition, by end usehousehold consumption: 39.1% (2017 est.)

government consumption: 14.5% (2017 est.)

investment in fixed capital: 42.7% (2017 est.)

investment in inventories: 1.7% (2017 est.)

exports of goods and services: 20.4% (2017 est.)

imports of goods and services: -18.4% (2017 est.)
household consumption: 81.6% (2016 est.)

government consumption: 12% (2016 est.)

investment in fixed capital: 17.2% (2016 est.)

investment in inventories: 30% (2016 est.)

exports of goods and services: 6.7% (2016 est.)

imports of goods and services: -47.6% (2016 est.)
Gross national saving44.2% of GDP (2019 est.)

44.4% of GDP (2018 est.)

45% of GDP (2017 est.)
22.7% of GDP (2017 est.)

25.8% of GDP (2016 est.)

21.4% of GDP (2015 est.)

Energy

ChinaAfghanistan
Electricity - production5.883 trillion kWh (2016 est.)1.211 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - consumption5.564 trillion kWh (2016 est.)5.526 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - exports18.91 billion kWh (2016 est.)0 kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - imports6.185 billion kWh (2016 est.)4.4 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Oil - production3.773 million bbl/day (2018 est.)0 bbl/day (2018 est.)
Oil - imports6.71 million bbl/day (2015 est.)0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Oil - exports57,310 bbl/day (2015 est.)0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Oil - proved reserves25.63 billion bbl (1 January 2018 est.)0 bbl (1 January 2018 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves5.44 trillion cu m (1 January 2018 est.)49.55 billion cu m (1 January 2018 est.)
Natural gas - production145.9 billion cu m (2017 est.)164.2 million cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - consumption238.6 billion cu m (2017 est.)164.2 million cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - exports3.37 billion cu m (2017 est.)0 cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - imports97.63 billion cu m (2017 est.)0 cu m (2017 est.)
Electricity - installed generating capacity1.653 billion kW (2016 est.)634,100 kW (2016 est.)
Electricity - from fossil fuels62% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)45% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants18% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)52% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Electricity - from nuclear fuels2% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)0% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Electricity - from other renewable sources18% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)4% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Refined petroleum products - production11.51 million bbl/day (2015 est.)0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - consumption12.47 million bbl/day (2016 est.)35,000 bbl/day (2016 est.)
Refined petroleum products - exports848,400 bbl/day (2015 est.)0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - imports1.16 million bbl/day (2015 est.)34,210 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Electricity accesselectrification - total population: 100% (2020)electrification - total population: 99% (2018)

electrification - urban areas: 100% (2018)

electrification - rural areas: 98% (2018)

Telecommunications

ChinaAfghanistan
Telephones - main lines in usetotal subscriptions: 191.033 million

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 13.75 (2019 est.)
total subscriptions: 134,636

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: less than 1 (2019 est.)
Telephones - mobile cellulartotal subscriptions: 1,746,238,000

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 125.66 (2019 est.)
total subscriptions: 22,580,071

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 63.18 (2019 est.)
Internet country code.cn.af
Internet userstotal: 751,886,119

percent of population: 54.3% (July 2018 est.)
total: 4,717,013

percent of population: 13.5% (July 2018 est.)
Telecommunication systemsgeneral assessment: China has the largest Internet market in the world with almost all subscribers accessing Internet through mobile devices; market is driven through government-allied investment; fast-developing data center market; government aims to provide universal and affordable broadband coverage through market competition and private investment in state-controlled enterprises; 3G and LTE subscribers will migrate to 5G aiming for 1M 5G base stations; government strengthens IoT policies to boost economic growth; China is pushing development of smart cities beyond Beijing; Beijing residents carry virtual card integrating identity, social security, health, and education documents; government controls gateways to global Internet through censorship, surveillance, and shut-downs; major exporter of broadcasting equipment world-wide (2021) (2020)

domestic: 13 per 100 fixed line and 120 per 100 mobile-cellular; a domestic satellite system with several earth stations has been in place since 2018 (2019)

international: country code - 86; landing points for the RJCN, EAC-C2C, TPE, APCN-2, APG, NCP, TEA, SeaMeWe-3, SJC2, Taiwan Strait Express-1, AAE-1, APCN-2, AAG, FEA, FLAG and TSE submarine cables providing connectivity to Asia, the Middle East, Europe, and the US; satellite earth stations - 7 (5 Intelsat - 4 Pacific Ocean and 1 Indian Ocean; 1 Intersputnik - Indian Ocean region; and 1 Inmarsat - Pacific and Indian Ocean regions) (2019)

note: the COVID-19 pandemic continues to have a significant impact on production and supply chains globally; since 2020, some aspects of the telecom sector have experienced downturn, particularly in mobile device production; many network operators delayed upgrades to infrastructure; progress towards 5G implementation was postponed or slowed in some countries; consumer spending on telecom services and devices was affected by large-scale job losses and the consequent restriction on disposable incomes; the crucial nature of telecom services as a tool for work and school from home became evident, and received some support from governments
general assessment:

despite decades of war, Afghanistan has successfully rebuilt infrastructure to create a functional telecom sector that covers nearly all of the population; due to mountainous geography, country relies on its mobile network; mobile broadband penetration growing, but is still low compared to other countries in Asia; operator launched LTE in Kabul; World Bank and other donors support development of a nationwide fiber backbone; terrestrial cable connectivity to five neighboring countries; work on the ‘Wakhan Corridor Fiber Optic Survey Project’ to connect to China is nearing completion; major importer of broadcasting equipment from UAE (2020)

(2020)

domestic: less than 1 per 100 for fixed-line teledensity; 59 per 100 for mobile-cellular; an increasing number of Afghans utilize mobile-cellular phone networks (2019)

international: country code - 93; multiple VSAT's provide international and domestic voice and data connectivity (2019)

note: the COVID-19 pandemic continues to have a significant impact on production and supply chains globally; since 2020, some aspects of the telecom sector have experienced downturn, particularly in mobile device production; many network operators delayed upgrades to infrastructure; progress towards 5G implementation was postponed or slowed in some countries; consumer spending on telecom services and devices was affected by large-scale job losses and the consequent restriction on disposable incomes; the crucial nature of telecom services as a tool for work and school from home became evident, and received some support from governments

 

Broadband - fixed subscriptionstotal: 449.279 million

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 32.33 (2019 est.)
total: 19,683

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: less than 1 (2018 est.)
Broadcast mediaall broadcast media are owned by, or affiliated with, the Communist Party of China or a government agency; no privately owned TV or radio stations; state-run Chinese Central TV, provincial, and municipal stations offer more than 2,000 channels; the Central Propaganda Department sends directives to all domestic media outlets to guide its reporting with the government maintaining authority to approve all programming; foreign-made TV programs must be approved prior to broadcast; increasingly, Chinese turn to online and satellite television to access Chinese and international films and television shows (2019)state-owned broadcaster, Radio Television Afghanistan (RTA), operates a series of radio and television stations in Kabul and the provinces; an estimated 174 private radio stations, 83 TV stations, and about a dozen international broadcasters are available (2019)

Transportation

ChinaAfghanistan
Roadwaystotal: 4,960,600 km (2017)

paved: 4,338,600 km (includes 136,500 km of expressways) (2017)

unpaved: 622,000 km (2017)
total: 34,903 km (2017)

paved: 17,903 km (2017)

unpaved: 17,000 km (2017)
Waterways110,000 km (navigable waterways) (2011)1,200 km (chiefly Amu Darya, which handles vessels up to 500 DWT) (2011)
Pipelines76000 km gas, 30400 km crude oil, 27700 km refined petroleum products, 797000 km water (2018)466 km gas (2013)
Ports and terminalsmajor seaport(s): Dalian, Ningbo, Qingdao, Qinhuangdao, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Tianjin

container port(s) (TEUs): Dalian (8,760,000), Guangzhou (23,236,200), Ningbo (27,530,000), Qingdao (21,010,000), Shanghai (43,303,000), Shenzhen (25,770,000), Tianjin (17,264,000) (2019)

LNG terminal(s) (import): Fujian, Guangdong, Jiangsu, Shandong, Shanghai, Tangshan, Zhejiang

river port(s): Guangzhou (Pearl)
river port(s): Kheyrabad, Shir Khan
Airportstotal: 507 (2013)total: 46 (2020)
Airports - with paved runwaystotal: 510 (2019)

over 3,047 m: 87

2,438 to 3,047 m: 187

1,524 to 2,437 m: 109

914 to 1,523 m: 43

under 914 m: 84
total: 29 (2020)

over 3,047 m: 4

2,438 to 3,047 m: 8

1,524 to 2,437 m: 12

914 to 1,523 m: 2

under 914 m: 3
Airports - with unpaved runwaystotal: 23 (2019)

over 3,047 m: 2

2,438 to 3,047 m: 0

1,524 to 2,437 m: 1

914 to 1,523 m: 7

under 914 m: 13
total: 17 (2020)

2,438 to 3,047 m: 1

1,524 to 2,437 m: 7

914 to 1,523 m: 4

under 914 m: 5
Heliports39 (2019)1 (2020)
National air transport systemnumber of registered air carriers: 56 (2020)

inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 2,890

annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 436,183,969 (2018)

annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 611,439,830 mt-km (2018)
number of registered air carriers: 3 (2020)

inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 13

annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 1,722,612 (2018)

annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 29.56 million mt-km (2018)
Civil aircraft registration country code prefixBYA

Military

ChinaAfghanistan
Military branchesPeople's Liberation Army (PLA): Ground Forces, Navy (PLAN, includes marines and naval aviation), Air Force (PLAAF, includes airborne forces), Rocket Force (strategic missile force), and Strategic Support Force (information warfare, cyber, space forces); People's Armed Police (PAP, includes Coast Guard, Border Defense Force, Internal Security Forces); PLA Reserve Force (2021)

note(s): the PAP is a paramilitary police component of China’s armed forces that is under the command of the Central Military Commission (CMC) and charged with internal security, law enforcement, counterterrorism, and maritime rights protection

in 2018, the Coast Guard was moved from the State Oceanic Administration to the PAP; in 2013, China merged four of its five major maritime law enforcement agencies – the China Marine Surveillance (CMS), Maritime Police, Fishery Law Enforcement (FLE), and Anti-Smuggling Police – into a unified coast guard
prior to August 2021, the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF) were comprised of military, police, and other security elements:

Ministry of Defense: Afghan National Army ((ANA), Afghan Air Force, Afghan Army Special Security Forces (ASSF; includes ANA Special Operations Command, General Command Police Special Units (GCPSU), and the Special Mission Wing (SMW)), Afghanistan National Army Territorial Forces (ANA-TF, lightly-armed local security forces); Afghan Border Force (ABF); Afghan National Civil Order Force (ANCOF)

Ministry of Interior: Afghan Uniform (National) Police (AUP); Public Security Police (PSP); Afghan Border Police (ABP); Afghan Anti-Crime Police; Afghan Local Police; Afghan Public Protection Force; Special Security Forces

National Directorate of Security ((NDS), intelligence service) (2021)
Military service age and obligation18-22 years of age for selective compulsory military service, with a 2-year service obligation; no minimum age for voluntary service (all officers are volunteers); 18-19 years of age for women high school graduates who meet requirements for specific military jobs (2019)not available
Military expenditures - percent of GDP1.7% of GDP (2020 est.)

1.9% of GDP (2019)

1.9% of GDP (2018)

1.9% of GDP (2017)

1.9% of GDP (2016)
1.2% of GDP (2019)

1% of GDP (2018)

0.9% of GDP (2017)

1% of GDP (2016)

1% of GDP (2015)

Transnational Issues

ChinaAfghanistan
Disputes - international

China and India continue their security and foreign policy dialogue started in 2005 related to a number of boundary disputes across the 2,000 mile shared border; India does not recognize Pakistan's 1964 ceding to China of the Aksai Chin, a territory designated as part of the princely state of Kashmir by the British Survey of India in 1865; China claims most of the Indian state Arunachal Pradesh to the base of the Himalayas, but the US recognizes the state of Arunachal Pradesh as Indian territory; Bhutan and China continue negotiations to establish a common boundary alignment to resolve territorial disputes arising from substantial cartographic discrepancies, the most contentious of which lie in Bhutan's west along China's Chumbi salient; Chinese maps show an international boundary symbol (the so-called “nine-dash line”) off the coasts of the littoral states of the South China Sea, where China has interrupted Vietnamese hydrocarbon exploration; China asserts sovereignty over Scarborough Reef along with the Philippines and Taiwan, and over the Spratly Islands together with Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan, Vietnam, and Brunei; the 2002 Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea eased tensions in the Spratlys, and in 2017 China and ASEAN began confidential negotiations for an updated Code of Conduct for the South China Sea designed not to settle territorial disputes but establish rules and norms in the region; this still is not the legally binding code of conduct sought by some parties; Vietnam and China continue to expand construction of facilities in the Spratlys and in early 2018 China began deploying advanced military systems to disputed Spratly outposts; China occupies some of the Paracel Islands also claimed by Vietnam and Taiwan; the Japanese-administered Senkaku Islands are also claimed by China and Taiwan; certain islands in the Yalu and Tumen Rivers are in dispute with North Korea; North Korea and China seek to stem illegal migration to China by North Koreans, fleeing privation and oppression; China and Russia have demarcated the once disputed islands at the Amur and Ussuri confluence and in the Argun River in accordance with their 2004 Agreement; China and Tajikistan have begun demarcating the revised boundary agreed to in the delimitation of 2002; the decade-long demarcation of the China-Vietnam land boundary was completed in 2009; citing environmental, cultural, and social concerns, China has reconsidered construction of 13 dams on the Salween River, but energy-starved Burma, with backing from Thailand, continues to consider building five hydro-electric dams downstream despite regional and international protests

Afghan, Coalition, and Pakistan military meet periodically to clarify the alignment of the boundary on the ground and on maps and since 2014 have met to discuss collaboration on the Taliban insurgency and counterterrorism efforts; Afghan and Iranian commissioners have discussed boundary monument densification and resurvey; Iran protests Afghanistan's restricting flow of dammed Helmand River tributaries during drought; Pakistan has sent troops across and built fences along some remote tribal areas of its treaty-defined Durand Line border with Afghanistan which serve as bases for foreign terrorists and other illegal activities; Russia remains concerned about the smuggling of poppy derivatives from Afghanistan through Central Asian countries

Illicit drugsmajor transshipment point for heroin produced in the Golden Triangle region of Southeast Asia; growing domestic consumption of synthetic drugs, and heroin from Southeast and Southwest Asia; source country for methamphetamine and heroin chemical precursors, despite new regulations on its large chemical industry; more people believed to be convicted and executed for drug offences than anywhere else in the world, according to NGOsworld's largest producer of opium; poppy cultivation increased 63 percent, to 328,304 hectares in 2017; while eradication increased slightly, it still remains well below levels achieved in 2015; the 2017 crop yielded an estimated 9,000 mt of raw opium, a 88% increase over 2016; the Taliban and other antigovernment groups participate in and profit from the opiate trade, which is a key source of revenue for the Taliban inside Afghanistan; widespread corruption and instability impede counterdrug efforts; most of the heroin consumed in Europe and Eurasia is derived from Afghan opium; Afghanistan is also struggling to respond to a burgeoning domestic opiate addiction problem; a 2015 national drug use survey found that roughly 11% of the population tested positive for one or more illicit drugs; vulnerable to drug money laundering through informal financial networks; illicit cultivation of cannabis and regional source of hashish (2018)
Refugees and internally displaced personsrefugees (country of origin): 303,095 (Vietnam), undetermined (North Korea) (2019)

IDPs: undetermined (2021)
refugees (country of origin): 72,191 (Pakistan) (2019)

IDPs: 3.547 million (mostly Pashtuns and Kuchis displaced in the south and west due to natural disasters and political instability) (2020)
Trafficking in personscurrent situation: human traffickers exploit domestic and foreign victims in China and Chinese people abroad; Chinese men, women, and children are victims of forced labor and sex trafficking in at least 60 countries; traffickers also use China as a transit point to subject foreign individuals to trafficking in other countries throughout Asia and in international maritime industries; state-sponsored forced labor is intensifying under the government’s mass detention and political indoctrination campaign against Muslim minorities in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region; well-organized criminal syndicates and local gangs subject Chinese women and girls to sex trafficking within China; women and girls from South Asia, Southeast Asia, and several countries in Africa experience forced labor in domestic service, forced concubinism leading to forced childbearing, and sex trafficking via forced and fraudulent marriage to Chinese men; African and Asian men reportedly experience conditions indicative of forced labor aboard Chinese-flagged fishing vessels; many North Korean refugees and asylum-seekers living in China illegally are particularly vulnerable to trafficking

tier rating: Tier 3 — China does not fully meet the minimum standards for elimination of trafficking and is not making significant efforts to do so; the government prosecuted and convicted some traffickers and continued to cooperate with international authorities to address forced and fraudulent marriages in China; however, there was a government policy or pattern of widespread forced labor, including the continued mass arbitrary detention of more than one million Uyghurs, ethnic Kazakhs, ethnic Kyrgyz, and other Muslims in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region; the government did not report any investigations, prosecutions, or convictions of law enforcement officials allegedly complicit despite continued reports of officials benefiting from, permitting, or directly facilitating sex trafficking; authorities did not report identifying any trafficking victims or referring them to protective services; it is likely that law enforcement arrested and detained unidentified trafficking victims for crimes traffickers compelled them to commit; for the third consecutive year, the government did not report the extent to which it funded anti-trafficking activities in furtherance of the 2013-2020 National Action Plan on Combating Human Trafficking (2020)
current situation: human traffickers exploit domestic and foreign victims and returning Afghan migrants and exploit Afghan victims abroad; internal trafficking is more prevalent than transnational trafficking; traffickers exploit men, women, and a large number of children domestically; victims are subjected to forced labor in agriculture, brick kilns, carpet weaving, domestic servitude, commercial sex, begging, poppy cultivation and harvesting, salt mining, transnational drug smuggling, and truck driving; Afghan security forces and non-state armed groups, including the pro-government militias and the Taliban, continue to unlawfully recruit and use child soldiers; sexual exploitation of boys remains pervasive nationwide, and traffickers subject some boys to sexual exploitation abroad

tier rating:

Tier 3 Afghanistan does not fully comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking in persons and is not making significant efforts to do so; the government decreased law enforcement efforts against civilian and official perpetrators of trafficking, and officials complicit in recruitment and use of child soldiers and the sexual exploitation of boys continued to operate with impunity; authorities continued to arrest, detain, and penalize many trafficking victims, including punishing sex trafficking victims for “moral crimes”; the judiciary remained underfunded, understaffed, and undertrained (2020)

Source: CIA Factbook