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Budgets and Expenditure in Subregion South-West Asia
People of Concern - 2021 [projected][["Refugees",2441504],["Asylum-seekers",15633],["IDPs",3800000],["Returned IDPs",250000],["Returned refugees",60000],["Others of concern",53778]]
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Operational environmentAfter more than four decades of displacement, Afghan refugees constitute one of the largest protracted refugee situations in the world and one of the biggest displacement crises in modern history. The 2020 Islamabad Refugee Summit, convened by the Government of Pakistan and UNHCR, provided an opportunity to reflect on the achievements, challenges and lessons learned over the years, and stressed the need to move towards solutions, building on the outcomes of the Global Compact on Refugees and the first Global Refugee Forum. It was widely recognized that the local, regional and global implications of the protracted Afghan displacement necessitate a renewed commitment towards sustainable solutions in Afghanistan and more equitable and predictable responsibility-sharing with the principal host countries. This commitment underpins the work of the support platform for the Solutions Strategy for Afghan Refugees (SSAR) which seeks to galvanize support for the implementation of the operational priorities of the SSAR by engaging a broader base of partners, including development actors, non-traditional donors, private sector and civil society.
Uncertainties surrounding the political transitions, escalating violence and limited access to basic services and livelihoods in Afghanistan continued to affect the decision of refugees to return. Due to these factors, combined with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and related restrictions on movements, 2020 saw the lowest number of returns (2,000 returnees) recorded since 2002. At the same time, in 2020 more than 320,000 people were internally displaced due to conflict in 32 out of Afghanistan’s 34 provinces. According to the UN, 93% of the Afghan population are expected to live on less than US$2 a day in 2021; and 30.5 million people are in urgent need of a social assistance to help them cope with the shocks and economic impact of the pandemic.
Yet, the initiation of the first-ever intra-Afghan peace negotiations represents a critical milestone and pathway to peace and stability and can pave way for the long-awaited solution of voluntary repatriation. The 2020 Afghanistan Conference and its outcome documents, notably the Afghanistan National Peace and Development Framework II (2021-2025) and the Afghanistan Partnership Framework anchored the imperative of solutions to forced displacement in Afghanistan’s development plans and partnerships with the international community.
Despite considerable strain on their infrastructure, further exacerbated by the impact of the pandemic, the Islamic Republics of Iran and Pakistan continue to host millions of Afghan refugees and Afghan nationals with different status, upholding their inclusive policies, particularly in the areas of education, skills training and health care.
Strategy: Response and implementationThe SSAR remains the key policy and operational framework for the region, focusing on the following priorities:
Facilitating voluntary repatriation, including by:
i) supporting the Government of Afghanistan in the distribution of land to returnees;
ii) investing in human capital, resilience and portable skills of refugees in host countries to enhance the potential for return and reintegration;
iii) tailoring assistance to enable anchoring upon return; and
iv) assisting host governments in registration, data collection and documentation processes that support regulated border management and inform cross-border programmes on return and reintegration.
The key priority in 2021 will be the implementation of the document renewal and information verification exercise (DRIVE) in Pakistan which will result in verification and issuance of new biometric documentation to 1.4 million registered refugees. The updated and expanded dataset gathered through DRIVE will inform protection and assistance interventions in Pakistan, and importantly, help better target solutions-oriented interventions in Afghanistan, including the investments in the priority areas of return and reintegration (PARRs).
Enhancing capacity and creating conditions for sustainable reintegration in Afghanistan through coordinated multi-sectoral, area-based, humanitarian-development-peace investments in the PARRs. The PARRs link short- and medium-term community-based projects to longer-term development programmes and encourage private sector investment; benefitting communities as a whole, including returnees, IDPs and local communities.
Channelling additional investments into national public services in the Islamic Republic of Iran and Pakistan (education, health care, vocational skills development and social protection) to mitigate the impact on national systems and support the inclusive policies of the host governments. In Pakistan, the backbone of the SSAR is the refugee affected and hosting areas (RAHA) initiative, which benefits both refugees and their host communities through investments in national service delivery. In the Islamic Republic of Iran, the SSAR focuses on expanding access to national education and healthcare, including the Government’s universal public health insurance (UPHI) scheme.
The most urgent needs, identified by the Governments of the Islamic Republics of Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan and UNHCR, are outlined in a regional portfolio of scalable projects entitled “The Support Platform for the SSAR: A Partnership for Solidarity and Resilience.”
UNHCR will continue playing a secretariat role in support of the core group of the SSAR support platform, currently composed of: Denmark, Germany, Japan, Qatar, Switzerland, the Republic of Korea, Turkey, United States, Asian Development bank, European Union, UNDP and World Bank. The core group will play an important role in reinvigorating support for the SSAR and mobilizing engagement of new partners.
2021 Budget for South-West Asia | USD
|Islamic Republic of Iran||97,214,239||0||0||0||97,214,239|
2021 Voluntary Contributions to South-West Asia | USD
|Earmarking / Donor||Pillar 1
|South-West Asia overall|
|United States of America||0||0||1,000,000||1,000,000|
|South-West Asia overall subtotal||0||0||1,000,000||1,000,000|
|United States of America||0||0||6,000,000||6,000,000|
|Islamic Republic of Iran|
|Islamic Republic of Iran subtotal||5,333,240||0||0||5,333,240|
|Private donors in China||151,293||0||0||151,293|
|Private donors in Qatar||400,000||0||0||400,000|
|Private donors in the Republic of Korea||1,162||0||0||1,162|
|Private donors in the United Arab Emirates||210,608||0||0||210,608|
|Republic of Korea||361,591||0||0||361,591|
|United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland||346,490||0||0||346,490|
|United States of America||0||0||3,900,000||3,900,000|