The deputy chief of Afghanistan’s Central Bank says Chinese banks have halted U.S. dollar transactions with most Afghan commercial banks, making it difficult for businesses to pay for imports from one of the country’s biggest trading partners.
Khan Afzal Hadawal told RFE/RL's Radio Free Afghanistan that his country's delay in passing laws to meet global standards against money laundering and terrorist financing has already led to several foreign banks pulling out of Afghanistan.
Hadawal said only the New Kabul Bank was affected by China's decision as other Afghan banks are handling transactions through the German Commerzbank.
Reuters cited senior Chinese banking sources as saying the decision was in response to recent deadly attacks in China's western Xinjiang region.
Beijing blames those attacks on a Muslim group -- the East Turkestan Islamic Movement -- suspected on having training camps in Afghanistan.
With reporting by Reuters