Commercial Law Development Program (CLDP)


  • Implementation period: October 2014 – September 2017
  • Project budget: $10.7 million

Legal protection for business is critical to long-term economic growth, that is why the Commercial Law Development Program (CLDP), an interagency agreement between USAID and the United States Department of Commerce, aims to achieve an effective commercial legal framework to provide greater economic opportunities for Afghan entrepreneurs. In Afghanistan, the legal regulations for commerce are underdeveloped and businesses do not always have access to this protection. The country lacks skilled lawyers and judges able to argue and adjudicate commercial cases. Commercial laws are poorly written and ineffective for modern day commercial needs.

The program addresses the following goals: (1) Increase the capacity of the Afghan academic community to provide commercial law education. (2) Promote a business-enabling environment where the private sector can engage in legitimate and transparent business practices to avoid legal disputes. (3) Enhance the capacity of the Afghan government to effectively administer and enforce commercial law. (4) Develop, strengthen and promote alternative dispute resolution mechanisms.


  • Develop commercial law clinics and trade law courses at Afghan universities.
  • Support a moot court competition program at Kabul University Law School and support a national initiative to encourage participation of other law schools.
  • Broaden the commercial law curriculum at Afghan law schools through training and capacity-building activities for faculty, administrators and Ministry of Higher Education officials.
  • Conduct training programs and workshops on legislative topics, contract administration and arbitration/media skills for a varied audience, including businesswomen and officials from the Ministry of Justice (MOJ), Ministry of Mines and Petroleum, Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MoCIT) and Ministry of Commerce and Industries (MoCI).
  • Advise MoMP, MCIT, MOJ and MoCI on drafting and implementation of new laws and regulations.
  • Publish and distribute two business law handbooks on company formation and dispute resolution.
  • Provide support and training for the newly established Afghanistan Business Integrity Network, a private sector-managed entity that deals with corruption in private businesses.
  • Support Business Integrity Training Programs for the private sector, civil society, judiciary, media and government to improve transparency and legitimate business practices in Afghanistan.
  • Establish an incubation and mentorship program for alumni of CLDP. 


  • Conducted advanced seminar on administrative processes, quality of service/pricing and digital television transition for 15 mid-level officials from the Afghanistan Telecommunication Regulatory Authority and MoCIT.
  • Conducted commercial law clinic course for 20 Kabul University Law School students.
  • Prepared 13 students from Kabul University, Kardan University and American University of Afghanistan in critical thinking and oral advocacy skills for the 2015 Vis (East) Moot Court competition, one of the world’s most prestigious commercial law moot competitions.
  • Assisted MoCIT in drafting Afghanistan’s cybersecurity and e-Commerce law.

Last updated: September 14, 2015

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