A group of Indian companies mandated to mine iron ore from a large deposit in Afghanistan has asked for $7.8 billion in government support and loans for the job . The money, they claim, is required to develop infrastructure that includes a power plant and transport links. In all, the group plans to spend $11 billion in this venture.
Given the Afghan situation, this now has the makings of an adventure and less of a venture. And $7.8 billion is not exactly petty cash. India has always supported building infrastructure in Afghanistan. But at the moment, the security situation there does not permit this. After international troops withdraw, a free-for-all is likely there.
A better option would be to directly evacuate iron ore from Afghanistan. The issues at hand can be explained to the Afghans. At a later date, when the situation improves, steel mills and industrial infrastructure can be built.