KABUL - The European Union said Afghanistan policy makers need to improve the nation's governance as it would be crucial denominator, when international community decides on future funding for the turmoil-plagued country.
In Brussels, Vyguadas Usackas, EU Special Representative and Head of Delegation, told the Foreign Affairs Committee of the European Parliament that Tokyo Conference in July, would largely focus on governance and development, before deciding their long-term commitment to Afghanistan.
"The Afghan government should take action before and after Tokyo to demonstrate its determination to improve governance, progress on governance would influence decisions by the European Union on funding for Afghanistan," said Usackas.
In an EU press release, Usackas mentioned that Tokyo conference would focus on governance and development to underline the importance of the international community, including the EU, attached to a sustained partnership based on credible mutual commitments.
At Tokyo, donors would recognize their unique commitment to Afghanistan and lend their support to an Afghan development strategy, he said.
He also said that it was essential that the 2014 election was free and fair and welcomed the start of consultations on reform of the electoral law.
"The EU fully supports an inclusive and transparent consultation process, leading to more credible elections and the peaceful transfer of power," he added.
At the briefing, he also outlined the progress made in Afghanistan in recent years – access to healthcare and education had increased.
The Afghan National Security Forces had become more capable, however, the sustainability of improved security in many towns and districts depended on good governance and service delivery.
In response to questions from European MPs on the future for Afghanistan post-2014, Usackas said EU was committed to a long-term partnership with Afghanistan.
He also said EUPOL (European Union Police) would remain in Afghanistan until the end of 2014 and EU would continue to support Afghanistan in strengthening the police and the rule of law after that date.