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Note: This material has been taken from "Provincial Development Plan, Kunduz Provincial Profile" prepared by the Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development (MRRD), 2007.




Kunduz province is located north of Kabul and borders with Tajikistan. The province also borders with Baghlan, Takhar, Balkh and Samangan provinces. The province covers an area of 7827 km2. Three quarters of the area is made up of flat land while about 12% is mountainous or semi mountainous terrain, as the following table shows:

Topography type
Flat Mountainous Semi Mountainous Semi Flat Not Reported TOTAL
78.8% 3.7% 8.2% 7.8% 1.6% 100.0%
Source: CSO/UNFPA Socio Economic and Demographic Profile


The province is divided into 7 Districts. The provincial capital is Kunduz center which has a population of about 247450 inhabitants

Demography and Population

Kunduz has a total population of 773,387. There are 86,756 households in the province, and households on average have 6 members. The following table shows the population by district.

Population by Districts
District Number of males Number of females Total population
Provincial center Kunduz 123868 123582 247450
Hazrati Imam Sahib 100707 98479 199186
Ghala Zal 27716 27033 54749
Char Darah 30963 30624 61587
Ali Abad 19275 19247 38522
Khan Abad 56779 28689 114743
Dasht-i-Archi 28461 28689 57150
Total 387789 385618 7733

Source: CSO/UNFPA Socio Economic and Demographic Profile

Around, 69% of the population of Kunduz lives in rural districts, while 31% lives in urban areas. Around 50% of the population is male and 50% is female, The major ethnic groups living in Kunduz province are Pashtoon and Tajik, followed by Uzbek, Hazara, Turkmen and other. Major tribes include 1. Tajik, Aimaq, Sujani, Sadaat (hazara), Shikh Ali, Ismailia, Omarkhil, Ibrahimkhil, Amadzaee, Uzbek, Qarluq, Toghli, Arab, Kochi and Balooch. Pashtu, Dari and Uzbeki are spoken by 90% of the population and 88% of the villages. A fourth language, Turkmeni, is spoken by the majorities in 10 villages representing 8% of the population.

Kunduz province has a population of Kuchis or nomads whose numbers vary in different seasons. In winter 88,208 individuals, or 3.6% of the overall Kuchi population, stay in Kunduz living in 60 communities. Of these 52% are short range migratory, and 48% are long-range migratory. All of these are partially migratory so a part of the community will remain behind in the winter area during the summer. The proportion that migrates varies but in almost all communities less than 30% remains behind. The most important summer areas for the short range migratory Kuchi are the Charhar Dara, Kunduz, Imam Sahib, Archi Aliabad and Qala Zal districts of Kunduz province. The most important summer areas for the long range migratory Kuchi are in Badakhshan province (mostly Baharak district, but also Yawan and Kohistan districts). The Kuchi population in the summer are 45,570 individuals



Infrastructure and Natural Resources

The provision of basic infrastructure such as water and sanitation, energy, transport and communications is one of the key elements necessary for sustainable development. In Kunduz province, on average only 25% of households use safe drinking water. This falls to 15% in the urban area, and rises to 29% in rural areas. Around nine-tenths of households (88%) have direct access to their main source of drinking water within their community, however nearly one in ten households (9%) has to travel for up to an hour to access drinking water, and for 3% travel to access drinking water can take up to 6 hours as the table below shows:

Time required accessing main source of drinking water

In community Less than 1 hour 1-3 hours 3-6 hours
% 88 9 2 1
Source: NRVA 2005


Only 2% of households in the urban area have safe toilets, the following table shows the kinds of toilet facilities used by households in the province:

Toilet facilities used by households

None/ bush open field/ Dearan / Sahrah (area in compound but not pit) Open pit Traditional covered latrine Improved latrine Flush latrine
% 8 3 3 86 0 0
Source: NRVA 2005


On average 18% of households in Kunduz province have access to electricity with the majority of these relying on public electricity (15%). Access to electricity is much greater in the urban area where 64% of households have access to electricity; however this figure falls to just 5% in rural areas, and less than half of these (2%) have access to public electricity.

The transport infrastructure in Kunduz is reasonably well developed, with 68% of roads in the province able to take car traffic in all seasons, and 26% able to take car traffic in some seasons. However, in 4% of the province there are no roads at all, as shown in the following table:

Road Types

District Cars all season Cars some seasons No roads Not reported
Provincial center Kunduz 79.4% 17.0% 1.8% 1.8%
Hazrati Imam Saheb 73.5% 23.0% 1.0% 2.5%
Qalai Zal 64.3% 33.3% .0% 2.4%
Char Darah 81.1% 14.2% 2.8% 1.9%
Ali Abad 66.2% 13.8% 18.5% 1.5%
Khan Abad 33.8% 57.2% 8.3% .7%
Dasht-i-Archi 72.1% 21.3% 3.3% 3.3%
Total 68.3% 25.6% 4.1% 2.0%
Source: CSO (analysis by AIRD)


The following table indicates road travel times between the provincial capital - Kunduz centre and the major district centres in the province, and other key provincial centres in the region.

Road Travel Times
From To Time Road Condition
Kunduz Imam Sahib district (Sher Khan border) 1 – 1:15 hrs In good condition. Tarmac is damaged on some parts of the road.
Kunduz Aliabad District 30 min. In good condition. Tarmac.
Kunduz Taluqan (Takhar province) 1 – 1:30 hrs In good condition. Tarmac is damager on some parts of the road.
Kunduz Chardara 45 min Road is in bad condition. Off road conditions.
Source: UNAMA


As far as telecommunications is concerned, Roshan is active in Aliabad, Chardarah, Khanabad, Imam Sahib District and Archi districts. AWCC and AREEBA are active in Aliabad, Chardarah, Khanabad, probably in Imam Sahib districts but not working in Qalai Zal and Archi. DIGITAL phone network is operating only in Kunduz. AFGHAN TELECOM is about to be installed in Kunduz city.


Economic Governance and Private Sector Development

Kunduz province is mainly an agricultural province with fertile lands. The main industry in the province is the manufacture of cotton in the Spinzar textile factory which is located in Kunduz city. Agriculture is a major source of revenue for 66% of households in Kunduz province, including 76% of rural households and 34% of households in the urban area. Seventy percent of rural households and 30% of urban households own or manage agricultural land or garden plots in the province. However, more than half (58%) of households in the urban area and nearly one-fifth (19%) of households earn some income from trade and services. Around one-seventh (14%) of households in rural areas and one-fifth of households in urban areas earn income through non-farm related labor. Livestock also accounts for income for more than one-quarter (28%) of rural and more than one-fifth (21%) of urban households as the following table shows:

Sources of income reported by households
Source of income Rural (%) Urban (%) Total (%)
Agriculture 76 34 66
Livestock 28 21 27
Opium 0 0 0
Trade and Services 19 58 28
Manufacture 6 7 6
Non-Farm Labour 14 20 15
Remittances 1 0 1
Source: NRVA 2005


In 2005 there were 54 Agricultural cooperatives active in Kunduz involving 3,592 members. This was around nine times more people than in 2003 when the figure was only 406 members. In 2005 agricultural cooperatives controlled a total of 11,720 Ha of land and achieved a surplus of products for sale of 90,000 tons. As a result of this, each member held a share in the capital of the cooperative to the value of 1,373, 200Afs.

Kunduz produces industrial crops to some extent. The two major products are cotton and sesame, produced in respectively 31% and 48% of villages producing industrial crops. Cotton is produced in Kunduz, Hazrat Imam Saheb and Char Dara, and sesame is produced in Kuduz and Hazrat Imam Saheb. The sector of small industries is almost inexistent in Kunduz province. Karakul skin is produced mostly in Hazrat Imam Sahib and Qala-I-Zal districts.

Handicrafts are not omnipresent either but rugs and jewelry are produced to some extent in the province. Hazrati Imam Sahib is home to one-third of the villages producing rugs. Carpets are mostly produced in Hazrati Imam Sahib, Qala-I-Zal and Char Dara districts. Jewelry is mostly produced in Hazrat Imam Saheb and Char Dara districts.

In 2005, 13% of households in Kunduz reported taking out loans. Of these loans, significant percentages were used to invest in economic activity such as agricultural inputs (27%), business investment (4%) and buying land (1%).


Agriculture and Rural Development

Enhancing licit agricultural productivity, creating incentives for non-farm investment, developing rural infrastructure, and supporting access to skills development and financial services will allow individuals, households and communities to participate licitly and productively in the economy. As agriculture represents the major source of income for two-thirds of households in the province (66%), rural development will be a key element of progress in Kunduz. The most important field crops grown in the province include wheat, rice, watermelon, melon and maize. The most common crops grown in garden plots include fruit and nut trees (78%) and grapes (6%).

Three quarters of households with access to fertilizer use this on field crops (76%) and to a much lesser degree on garden plots (1%), although nearly one quarter of households uses fertilizer on both field and garden (23%). The main types of fertilizer used by households in the province are shown in the following table:

Main Types Of Fertilizer Used By Households
Human Animal Urea
% % % Average Kg per Household % Average Kg per Household
23 20 89 638.7 Kg 82 394.4Kg
Source: NRVA 2005


On average 85% of households in the province have access to irrigated land, and 12% of rural households have access to rain fed land.

Households (%) access to irrigated and rain fed land

Rural Urban Average
Access to irrigated land 85 84 85
Access to rain fed land 12
Source: NRVA 2005


Seventy four percent of rural households, 78% of Kuchi households and 44% of households in urban areas in the province own livestock or poultry. The most commonly owned livestock are sheep, cattle, poultry, donkey and goats as the following table shows:

Households (%) owning poultry and livestock
Livestock Kuchi Rural Urban Average
Cattle 33 61 40 45
Oxen 14 32 7 18
Horses 14 15 6 12
Donkey 56 37 9 34
Camel 8 3 1 4
Goats 61 18 5 28
Sheep 67 48 24 46
Poultry 39 56 33 43
Source: NRVA 2005



Ensuring good quality education and equitable access to education and skills are some of the important ways to raise human capital, reduce poverty and facilitate economic growth. The overall literacy rate in Kunduz province is 33%, however, while two-fifths (40%) of men are literate, this is true for around a quarter of women (24%). In the population aged between 15 and 24 the situation for men is slightly better with 44.6% literacy, whereas for women the figure actually decrease to around one fifth (20.7%). The Kuchi population in the province has particularly low levels of literacy with just 1.0% of men and 0.1% of women able to read and write.

On average 62% of children between 6 and 13 are enrolled in school, however, again the figure is around more than two third of boys 69% and one half of girls 52%. Amongst the Kuchi population, one in six boys (16%) and one in twenty girls (5%) attend school in Kunduz during the winter months, however no Kuchi children attend school in the province during the summer.

Overall there are 252 primary and secondary schools in the province catering for 214,793 students. Boys account for 63% of students and 82% of schools are boys’ schools. There are nearly 4,970 teachers working in schools in the Kunduz province, one quarter of whom are women (25%).

Primary and Secondary Education

Schools Students Teachers

boys girls boys girls male female
Primary 128 33 115212 75520 - -
Secondary 79 12 19658 4403 - -
Total 207 45 134870 79923 1265 3705
252 214793 4970
Source: CSO Afghanistan Statistical Yearbook 2006

Only around a quarter of primary school students (23.8%) don’t have travel the outside their villages to reach their nearest school, and this is true for 8% for secondary school students and 1.8% of high school students. On the other hand nearly half of high school students (47.6%), a third of secondary school students (31%) and one fifth of primary school students have to travel more than10 kms to reach their nearest school.

Kunduz province also has a number of higher education facilities. The Higher Education Institute of Kunduz has faculties of Social Sciences, Science and Training and Education. In 2005 there were 592 students enrolled at the university 334 men (56%) and 258 women (44%). Of those, 135 students were in their first year, 90 men (67%) and 45 women (33%). Eighty three male students live in dormitories provided by the University.

There is also an Agricultural vocational high school with 6 teachers catering for a total of 116 students, all of whom are men, and a Commerce girl’s school with 75 female students. In 2005, 12 students graduated from the commerce school. There is also a teacher training institute which had 212 students in 2005, two thirds (67%) of whom were men and one third (33%) women. Six hundred new teachers graduated from Kunduz teacher training institute in 2005, including 36% women and 64% men.



A basic infrastructure of health services exists in Kunduz province. In 2005 there were 26 health centers and 3 hospitals with a total of 82 beds. There were also 90 doctors and 240 nurses employed by the Ministry of Health working in the province, which represented a increase of about 37% in the number health service personnel compared to 2003. The major health facilities in the province are shown in the following table:

Health Services (Hospitals and Clinics by district)
Hospitals Clinics
Name Location Name Location
Civilian Hospital Sidarak, Kunduz city Private Ophthalmic clinic Bandari Khanabad street
National Army Hospital Wellayat street, inside the police compound Swedish Committee Clinic Bandari Kabul street.
GE PRT Hospital At the Kunduz airport

Source: UNAMA


The province also has 95 pharmacies all of which are owned privately.

The majority of communities do not have a health worker permanently present in their community. Over four fifths (83%) of men’s shura and three quarters (77%) of women’s shura reported that there was no community health worker present in their community, and both groups most commonly said that their closest health facility is basic health centers or clinic without beds. Out of 903 villages, only 13 have a health centre within their boundaries, and only 45 have a dispensary. More than half of households (56%) have to travel more than 10 kilometers to reach their closest health facility.


Social Protection

Building the capacities, opportunities and security of extremely poor and vulnerable Afghans through a process of economic empowerment is essential in order to reduce poverty and increase self-reliance. The level of economic hardship in Kunduz is relatively low. Around one-sixth of the households (17%) in the province report having problems satisfying their food needs at least 3 – 6 times a year and around one-fifth of household (19%) faced these problems up to three time this year, as the following table shows:

Problems satisfying food need of the household during the last year

Never Rarely (1-3 times) Sometimes (3-6 times) Often (few times a month) Mostly (happens a lot)
Households (%) 49 19 17 1 14

Source: NRVA 2005


Around a quarter (26%) of the population in the province is estimated to receive less than the minimum daily caloric intake necessary to maintain good health. This figure is lower in the rural population (23%), then for people living in the urban area (34%). In both rural and urban areas around 40% the population has low dietary diversity and poor or very poor food consumption as shown below:

Food consumption classification for all households

Low dietary diversity Better dietary diversity
Households (%) Very poor food consumption Poor food consumption Slightly better food consumption Better food consumption
Rural 8 31 43 18
Total 6 34 41 19

Source: NRVA 2005


In 2005, 16% of the population of Kunduz province received allocations of food aid, which reached a total of 93,757 beneficiaries. In addition, of the 13% of households who reported taking out loans, 28% said that the main use of their largest loan was to buy food. A further 11% used the money to cover expenses for health emergencies. In the same year more than one-third (36%) of the households in the province reported feeling that their economic situation had remained the same compared to a year ago, and one-sixth (17%) felt that it had got worse or much worse, as the following table shows:

Comparison of overall economic situation compared to one year ago

Much worse Worse Same Slightly better Much better
Households (%) 5 12 36 38 10

Source: NRVA 2005


In 2005, more than a quarter of all households (28%) in the province report having been negatively affected by some unexpected event in the last year, which was beyond their control. Rural households were less vulnerable to such shocks, with 27% of households affected, as opposed to 33% of urban households. People living in urban areas were vulnerable to shocks related to natural disasters, financial problems and drinking water, whereas those in rural areas were most at risk from natural disasters and drinking water problems as the following table shows:

Households experiencing shocks in the province (%)
Types of shocks Rural Urban Average
Drinking water 44 28 39
Agricultural 26 7 21
Natural disaster 60 41 53
Insecurity 0 10 2
Financial 28 31 28
Health or epidemics 2 4 2

Source: NRVA 2005


Of those households affected, around three quarters reported that they had not recovered at all from shocks experienced in the last 12 months (71%), and one-fifth said they had recovered only partially (22%).



For more detail information please take a look at "A Socio-Economic and Demographic Profile, Household Listing -2003 (Central Statistics Organization)"




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