Spur and Aga Khan Foundation Canada invited Roshan CEO and Canadian native Karim Khoja to discuss the mobile tech sector in Afghanistan. The event was moderated by May Jeong, an award-winning freelance writer based in Afghanistan.
Published on Nov 12, 2015
In 2003, when the Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development established the Afghanistan mobile company Roshan, there was virtually no telecommunications infrastructure in the country. Some Afghans actually had to walk to a neighbouring country to make a phone call. Today, Roshan’s 1,000 towers reach more than six million subscribers.
It’s the country’s largest investor and recently, it made Fortune’s first ever Change the World list of businesses making an impact. By offering mobile money transfers, the company extends financial services to the 97% of Afghans who can’t access banks. It also supports telemedicine applications, allowing doctors in remote areas to diagnose patients and even perform surgery. And Afghan youth, who make up the majority of the population, are using mobile phones to find their voice through social media.
Aga Khan Foundation Canada has compiled a few resources to help you learn more about Roshan and its impact in Afghanistan. Start by reading our interview with Karim Khoja and then browse the articles below.
- Roshan: The Greatest Untold Story of Societal Transformation in Afghanistan
- The one thing that works in Afghanistan: mobile
- Innovating to Create a Stronger Afghanistan