These guys kill me. What part of this bilateral agreement do the Afghans not understand? Here it is again, just to emphasize how stupid this is.
A 2003 bilateral agreement states the U.S. government, “its military and civilian personnel, contractors, and contractor personnel shall not be liable to pay any tax or similar fees assessed within Afghanistan.” A subsequent 2004 Military Technical Agreement also carved out a tax-free status for contractors to the U.S., a view that has been reinforced by U.S. officials in correspondence with Afghan officials.
Not only that, but because of this dumb APPF force, these companies are forced to used government security. I don’t know if the APPF was protecting Contrack International or not during this latest attack, but I do know that according to the business folks in that area, they have been screaming for more security in that area for awhile. It is a logistics hub, and attacks on such sites are part of the Taliban goal of inflicting economic damage.
We will see if the US can press back and protect these companies that are essential to the war effort. I think this quote says it all, if the US cannot square this away.
A person involved in logistics issues said the matter could come to a head if the Afghan government imposes fees or restrictions on cargo that slows the delivery of goods to forward operating bases, or FOBs.
“We’ve been told [by the coalition] to reduce stocks. So they’ll run out of fuel and they’ll go on MREs on some of these FOBs,” the person said, referring to the military’s packaged rations. “And little Johnny’s going to call Mom, and that’s now going to be all over the press.”
We will see how it goes? -Matt
Afghanistan Seeks Taxes From Contractors to U.S.
By NATHAN HODGE
Afghanistan has launched tax audits of major contractors to the U.S. military, government officials say, in a bid to shore up the country’s finances as the international military presence winds down and reconstruction funds dry up.
In particular, Kabul is focusing on the U.S. military’s main food supplier in Afghanistan, Supreme Foodservice GmbH, alleging that the company and similar logistics firms are abusing their status to illegally bring taxable goods into the country for resale.
Supreme says it isn’t engaging in any commercial activity in Afghanistan that should make it liable for taxes.
Kabul’s move potentially puts the Afghan government at odds with Washington, which has viewed, with limited caveats, materials imported to support the 66,000 U.S. forces here as exempt from taxation and customs fees. Since 2005, the Pentagon spent more than $7.9 billion on its food-supply contract with Supreme alone, awarding the company an additional $1.5 billion extension contract this past summer.