Afghanistan’s Ministry of Transport and Civil Aviation (MoTCA) on Wednesday reported that it plans to carry out a registration and evaluation review of all transport companies operating in the country.
Based on information provided by the transport ministry, a number of individuals have applied for transport licenses despite not having vehicles. The ministry said this points towards misuse of licenses.
“To combat corruption and to provide more facilities to the citizens, we have decided to dissolve all fake transport companies. We will establish companies with the necessary standards and necessary equipment,” said Hekmatullah Qawanj, spokesman for the MoTCA.
These fake licenses will be cancelled once our assessments are wrapped up, said the ministry.
But officials from the transport union have said that the fake companies had been established with the support of lawbreakers who are involved in extortion.
The officials claim these companies coordinate with certain people who have restaurants and terminals along the Kabul-Herat highway and charge travelers double the price for transport.
“Restaurants ask 400 AFs in exchange for one ticket, but they pay us only 200 AFs,” said Multan, a bus driver who travels the Kabul-Herat highway.
“The transport of travelers should not be determined by restaurant owners, who pay money to fake companies to make their demands. Whenever we criticize them, powerful elements come out in their support,” said Sulaiman Momand, a member of the transport union.
“47 companies operate in the west of the country and are based in Kabul, but only seven of these companies are real, 40 other companies are fake,” said Binyamin Wardak, manager of a private transport company in Kabul.
According to the MoTCA, the government has launched work on the establishment of standard terminals in the country which would pave the way for only professional and registered companies to operate.