Donors pledge $12 billion for Afghanistan for 2021-24 - Finland

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GENEVA (Reuters) - Countries and international institutions pledged $3 billion in development support to Afghanistan in 2021, and a total of some $12 billion for four years, Finland announced at the end of a Geneva pledging conference on Tuesday.

Ville Skinnari, Finland's minister for development cooperation and foreign trade, said donors had pledged $3 billion for next year, with annual commitments expected to continue at the same level, adding: "This would amount to $12 billion USD during four years."

The preliminary figure was a drop from $15.2 billion pledged in 2016 for a four-year period, despite being at a time when Afghanistan's needs are growing due to rising violence and the coronavirus pandemic.

In closing remarks, Afghanistan's finance minister Abdul Hadi Arghandiwal said the conference was a "success".

(Reporting by Stephanie Nebehay and Emma Farge)