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AUAF Alumni Association Board Organizes Alumni Lecture Series

On March 3rd, 2016, The Alumni Association Board of the American University of Afghanistan (AUAF) in collaboration with the Department of Development and Alumni Relations, organized its first lecture of the Alumni Lecture Series. The event was attended by key note speaker H.E Mozammil Shinwari, Deputy Minister of Commerce and Industries; Dr. Mark A. English, University President; Edrees Kakar, Development and Alumni Relations Manager; Ghulam Farooq Mujaddidi, Alumni Association Board President; AUAF Alumni Board members, AUAF Alumni community, students, faculty and staff.

The event commenced by the welcoming remarks by Dr. English. He thanked Mr. Mujaddidi and Mr. Kakar for their efforts to make the lecture series possible, and said that he hopes that these lecture series continue.

"As we move forward, it is very important that our alumni stay connected to the university, and so by event like this, they stay connected," said Dr. English.

In his speech, Mr. Mujaddidi introduced the Alumni Association Board, and highlighted its three main purposes,  maintaining connection with the university, helping the university to accomplish it objectives, and having a network of support after graduation. He said "Lecture series is  a plat form, which aims to bring back the Alumni to share their experience and accomplishments with the rest of the university's community , and provides learning and networking opportunities  for the students to interact with the graduates."

Deputy Minister Shinwari, delivered a lecture on "Afghanistan's Accession to World Trade Organization (WTO): Opportunities and Challenges," and spoke about the process that Ministry of Commerce and Industries went through to become the 164 member of WTO. He said the Ministry applied for WTO membership in Novembers 2004, and in 2009 completed the memorandum on foreign trade regime  that reflected the overall economic situation of the country.

 "We brought all the economic actors together parliamentarians, private sector, and the relevant ministries to work together in preparing our offer," He said. "Getting WTO membership cannot be achieved through political statements , you have to go through reforms domestically."

In addition, he discussed the tariff rates and classification of goods. He said that under the membership agreement a country cannot restrict another country to purchase and transit goods from a third country that has WTO membership, and that is why Pakistan cannot restrict Afghanistan to buy from India. " 100% of our products can enter EU without duty." said Deputy Minister Shinwari.

The event concluded with the Alumni interacting with students.