Agriculture (as measured by share of gross domestic product and employment) is a significant economic sector in seven Central and South Asian countries: Afghanistan, Iran, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. All of these countries are net food importers. Some have experienced successive years of drought, which has contributed to noticeable declines in agricultural output and the need to increase commodity imports. The United Nations’ World Food Program reports that both Afghanistan and Tajikistan are currently in need of emergency food assistance to cover sizable food deficits. The food outlook in Afghanistan is made uncertain by ongoing military conflict.
This report discusses the U.S. policy toward the Central Asia. It provides background information and most recent developments in Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan. U.S. objectives have included promoting free markets, democratization, human rights, energy development, and the forging of East-West and Central Asia-South Asia trade links.