Top Links

Top Links #13 Financing Afghanistan’s new regime and the struggle over its national exchange reserve.

As the Taliban establish their grip on power in Kabul, the question of finances rears its head. This matters so much, because the Afghan state has, in the recent past, been heavily dependent on foreign aid. The aid pays not just for government spending. Even more importantly it pays Afghanistan’s import bill.

Foreign exchange & the central bank reserves

Covering the import bill is more urgent, because with enough men with guns behind it, a state can tax its population and solve the problem of state finance. The Afghan Army is currently paid for largely by foreign donors. We do not doubt that the Taliban will find ways of maintaining its fighting force in being. It cannot use those same method to pay for foreign imports. And Afghanistan has an appetite for imports far in excess of what its exports pay for.

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Top Links #12 Afghanistan

How a regime falls. From inside Afghanistan’s embassy in India, before it was deleted: A central banker escapes Ahmady is American-raised. Alum of UCLA &

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Top Links #2 Reading suggestions from Adam Tooze: ECB, Guido Morselli and THAT Cummings clip. The regular list of links, exclusive for supporters of Chartbook Newsletter.

Top Links #1 was very well received.

So, here, somewhat sooner than I anticipated, is Top Links #2.


The urgency to get Top Link # 2 out, is all about the timetable of European Central Bank monetary policy. Yup. That’s the way we roll ….

On Thursday 22nd July the ECB will announce fresh guidance on how it intends to implement the new monetary policy Strategy it recently announced. The inflation target now is 2 percent. No more. No less. Given Europe’s recent record of lowflation that will be a challenge.

Last week I discussed the political logic of the ECB’s Strategic Review in this column for Social Europe.

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Chartbook Top Links #1: 1st in a series of posts with interesting links for Chartbook supporters.

I’m delighted and grateful that so many people are showing their support for Chartbook Newsletter by signing up as paying subscribers. It has been a big boost. Thank you!

To broaden and deepen that community, for paying subscribers, I am going to do a semi-regular weekly post that brings together interesting reading, podcasts and other links.

In the comments it would be great if subscribers would like to share their latest enthusiasms. No need for more than a quick line with a link.

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