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Dubai: Afghan businessmen in the UAE have hailed the US-Taliban peace deal signed on Saturday saying they have been waiting for this day for decades.

They hope it agreement be successfully implemented. They believe that peace deal will bring prosperity for all in their country which offers a plenty of investment and business opportunities. After 19 years of war, the Taliban and the United States inked a historic deal on Saturday that could possibly see a complete end to raging conflict in the country. The deal will possibility result in US troops leaving Afghanistan within 14 months. The deal also paves the way for talks between Afghans to end one of the longest-running conflicts in the world.

Gulf News spoke to some leading Afghan community members in the UAE to take their views about the peace agreement signed by the US and Taliban delegations in Qatar on February 29. They said the Afghan expatriates are quite ecstatic about the peace prospects in their country.

Women peace

Abdul Wahid, CEO Momin Group

“We all are extremely happy and over-joyed after the historic peace deal to ensure peace in our country,” said Abdul Wahid, a leading Afghan businessman in Dubai.

Abdul Wahid

Wahid, CEO of Momin Oil Industries in Dubai, said. “Afghan peace deal between Taliban and the US would open up new avenues for businesses and investors. “We all are very happy as we have been waiting for this day for four decades,” said Wahid who has been doing business in the UAE for the last 30 years and made Dubai his hub for all his business activities with Afghanistan.

Tired of war

“I believe this peace deal has the potential to be successful as everyone is tired of war. However, it will take time to implement it. You cannot settle an issue which spanned over 40-year in just a few days, “ he noted.

“Good news is that there will be no killing and no fights while the communication channels have already been opened in the country,” he said.

Wahid said that thousands of Afghan businessmen in the UAE would gladly expand their wings to their country which offers a lot of opportunities in the various fields.

Haji Obaidullah, Chairman Afghan Business Council, UAE

Haji Obaidullah Sadekhail, Chairman of Afghan Business Council in the UAE, told Gulf News that peace agreement between US and Taliban is certainly a good news for the whole country and the Afghan community living around the world. “This deal has given a new hope to our community as we all want peace in Afghanistan,” he said.

Haji Obaidullah

About talks between Taliban and the US-backed Afghan government in the next phase, Saderkhail said: “They would have to agree on peace terms as they do not have any other option but opt for peace. This is indeed a golden opportunity for all the stakeholders to move forward and stop decades long war.”

Afghans are ready to invest

Peace pact, he noted, would open doors for investment to rebuild Afghanistan. “Not only Afghans living around the world are ready to invest in their country but it will also be an attractive market for foreign investors because peace and safety bring prosperity,” added Saderkhail.

According to Saderkhail, there are around 150,000 Afghan expatriates live in the UAE and more than 70 per cent of leading Afghan businessmen are also based in the UAE and play as a major link between Afghanistan and the rest of the world.

Mohammad Afghan, Dubai-based businessman

Mohammad Afghan, a prominent Afghan businessmen in Dubai said that the peace deal has given a new hope to the people of Afghanistan. “It is definitely a good news for our country and for our people. However, we still have to see how the Taliban’s negotiations with the Afghan government progress in the coming weeks,” he added.

Mohammad Afghan

Afghan who made Dubai as his business hub to connect Afghanistan with rest of the world through his business, said that his country would offer huge investment in the field of housing, electricity, solar power, agriculture and mineral mining. “Now, our dream of having a prosperous, happy, peaceful and safe homeland will come true and our children who have been living abroad for decades will be able to return and glad to be part of nation building process,” he added.

Some features of the US-Taliban peace deal

Complete withdrawal of US forces from Afghanistan in 14 months

Permanent ceasefire that establishes lasting peace in the restive country.

The Taliban have provided the undertaking that the Afghan soil will not be used by militants to target American soldiers or allies of the US.

On March 10, 2020, the Taliban will take part in intra-Afghan negotiations to determine a future political road map for Afghanistan.

The US has given an undertaking to withdraw troops from Afghanistan and leave only 8.600 soldiers in the country at first

The US and Coalition troops have also agreed to withdraw all their forces from five military bases.

The US has agreed to release 5,000 Taliban prisoners

Taliban has agreed to release 1,000 prisoners of the other by March 10, the first day of the intra-Afghan negotiations.