The Taliban filed paperwork with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday (Sep. 3) for an initial public offering (IPO) that will reportedly value the Deobandi Islamist religious-political movement and military organization at some $39 billion.
First of its kind, the Taliban seeks to establish a new form of government that is all inclusive but also publicly traded, meaning that people will have a chance to own their government by simply buying shares.
Taliban co-founder Abdul Ghani Baradar said that the goal is to form a government that is unique to the Afghans, but also very practical. He noted that both capitalism and socialism had failed, and so the new Afghan government would only pick the beneficial elements from the two and discard everything else.
“We are not creating another US or China, but a new Afghanistan. We are neither communist nor capitalists, but we will pick good aspects from both and create a new system that will be the first of its kind. People will have a chance to own their government and even trade it. That is the vision of the Taliban 2.0.”
The Taliban Startup
The high valuation was boosted by the military equipment worth billions of shillings that were left behind by the United States, with close allies like China and Russia promising to bring in more resources.
The IPO will help the new government prop up the economy that is currently grappling with drought and the ravages of a conflict that killed an estimated 240000 Afghans. It will also help deal with the short term problem of sanctions, arms embargo and assets freeze against the Taliban organization.
This will be one of the largest IPOs ever, and will propel the Taliban to the world of stardom that is afforded by capitalism. It also means safety for the people of Afghanistan since no one is going to bomb a country if they have a stake in its leadership.