ZARANJ (PAN): People of the restive southwestern Nimroz said their main sources of economy were agriculture and business, demanding the government should help the local community to bolster the sectors.
The volatile draught-hit Nimroz shares borders with Iran and Pakistan with the province has immense trade and economic activities with Tehran.
Muhammad Qasim Khadri, Nimroz deputy governor said local businessmen import oil and other stuff from Iran and then they exported the items to rest of the provinces in Afghanistan.
Talking to Pajhwok Afghan News, he said establishment of mineral water and plastic’s factories had played greater role to promote the economy of the province.
He noted with satisfaction some local investors were setting up factories of mobile oil and cement begs, adding most of the people were associated with the profession of livestock, another major source of their income.
The Helmand River flows through Nimroz and then to Iran. The Khashrod Rivers also passes through Nimroz but most cultivable land of the province faced draught like situation, leaving the local livestock affected and cultivable lands barren.
The largest Kamal Khan Dam is situated in Nimroz’s Chahar Burjak district with construction work is still underway. People of the area were of the opinion that completion work of the dam would bring prosperity and progress to the draught-hit Nimroz.  
Muhammad Akbar Sharifi, head of agriculture department said: “The construction of Kamal Khan Dam will help irrigate 8,000 hectares of land and generate nine megawatt electricity. Some people work on the dam’s construction while most of others associate with the occupation of agriculture. Mari Dam has been built on the Khashrod River.”
Talking to Pajhwok Afghan News, he said with vast desert, Nimroz had enough cultivable land but its fields could not get the required water despite the fact that Helmand Rivers was flowing through Nimroz.
“Wheat, melon, watermelon and poppy are the main products being cultivated in the province,” said head of the agriculture department.
He said construction of the Kamal Khan Dam would usher an era of green revolution in Nimroz and ensure prosperity throughout the province. Most of the families of the province kept camels, sheep, cows and other kinds of animals. A number of people complained most of their livestock died because of a long draught during the past years.
Mehmood, a resident of King District said around 20, 000 animals of the people in his locality were died due to lack of irrigation water and continued wave of draught. “Around 80 % livestock has died,” he added.
Ghulam Sakhi, another resident of the district said their cattle hardly found any pasture due to lack of rains.
“During good old times, Nimroz was known as the Asia warehouse of wheat. The province has immense orchards with its pomegranates are widely known for its unique taste,” he added.
Great warrior, Amir Taimor had to lose his leg during fight with locals when he stormed the province and since then he was known Taimor lame. After losing his leg, Taimor destroyed and trampled dams, canals and orchards of the province.
Most of the families had to leave the province because of the decade old fighting and growing insecurity and their lands turned barren and desert. Another problem, which negatively impacts the agriculture of the province, was the long-draught. The construction of the Lashkari canal helped bolstering people’s economy to great extent.
Muhammad Akbar, a former from Chakhansor district said his land produced around 5,000 tons of melon and watermelons last year, which were exported to Helmand, Kandahar and Ghazni provinces and earned more in return.
Muhammad Naeem, a resident of Zaranj city said most of the people were carrying out drug smuggling, a business that was turning a source of income for the residents. Some people had been promoting their businesses by doing large scale smuggling.
Haji Abdullah, a businessman of Zaranj city said he was exporting cloth from Iran and most of the business community was doing cloth business with Iran.
He demanded the government to take measures to enhance agriculture, construct more dams, generate electricity and facilitate people to promote their business, which would leave positive impact on overall economy of the country.