The Regional Cooperation Directorate (RCD) in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan was established in 2011 to promote regionalism in the Afghan foreign policy and lead/coordinate/facilitate regional initiatives, processes and organizations to which Afghanistan is a party. It manages the work of all regional processes and organizations as well as all tri-lateral, quadrilateral and multi-lateral relations of Afghanistan in the surrounding regions.
RCD fulfills comprehensive programs/activities for strengthening regional cooperation. To this end, The RCD takes necessary steps towards deepening confidence between regional states as a means of improving and strengthening regional cooperation and integration. The RCD’s activities are included but not limited to:
•Establishment of a commission to design, develop and implement regional cooperation policies of Afghanistan.
•Organize conferences and consultative meetings with regional cooperation-related government and non-government organizations.
•Organize conferences and meetings at various levels with regional states, particularly with participating and supporting countries of the ‘Heart of Asia’-Istanbul Process, to lead and oversee regional cooperation policies.
•Institutionalization of the Heart of Asia-Istanbul Process in political, cultural, social, and economic forums in the region, and develop an implementation mechanism for its CBMs.
•Creation of a follow up and coordination mechanism for encouraging national and international organizations towards promoting regional cooperation, enabling Afghanistan to play a central role in regional integration.
•Enhance the role of Afghanistan in regional organizations and multilateral frameworks through active participation in regional cooperation-related meetings, gatherings, and conferences.
Headed by a Director General, the RCD has two main thematic departments each managed by a Deputy Director General. The RCD departments are:
1.Heart of Asia and Confidence Building Department