4/6/2022 9:25:15 AM
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A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman said the purpose of the two-day meeting of the region's foreign ministers of the regional states was to focus on the current crisis in Afghanistan and Afghans inside and outside the country. He said that the officials of these countries in the two-day meetings are looking for an immediate solution to ensure peace, stability and economic development for Afghanistan.
Foreign Ministers of Russia, Iran, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Qatar and Indonesia attended the meeting. Amir Khan Mottaqi, the acting foreign minister of the Taliban government, also attended the meeting.
Will China become an important player in Afghanistan?
The meeting of Afghanistan's neighbors in China came after Beijing has managed to establish relatively close relations with the Taliban. For China, regardless of the type of government in Afghanistan, exploitation and competition with foreign actors in Afghanistan is important. China had a close relationship with the Taliban even before the then-militant group could seize power in Kabul invited its leaders to Beijing several times.
As much as the Indians were able to establish a foothold in Afghanistan in the pre-Taliban era, China now sees itself as a foothold in the Taliban era, and it seems that in the Taliban era, Beijing has been more successful than New Delhi to court Taliban leaders and defeat its traditional rival, India, in the field of Afghanistan’s developments.
Hosting the meeting of Afghanistan's neighbors for the second time, China is presenting itself as a key player in Afghanistan. The Taliban have also announced that it will grant some mining concessions to Chinese.
On 13 March, the Wall Street Journal reported that dozens of Chinese mining companies visited Afghanistan over the past few months to discuss with the Taliban, which now controls the country, the exploitation of a number of Afghanistan's major mines. According to Chinese and Taliban officials, Beijing is in talks with the Taliban Emirates to begin mining at the Aynak (glasses) copper site, as well as work on oil and gas reserves in northern Afghanistan along the Amu Darya River. Both projects were halted for years due to the long war in the country, which has now ended.
China now controls many of the world's rare minerals, which are used to make a variety of technologies, including parts for electric vehicles and touch screens for smartphones.