US report says Kabul airport not using its currency counters to track cash leaving Afghanistan

A U.S. watchdog agency says Afghan customs officials are resisting U.S. efforts to help track billions of dollars being flown out of Kabul airport every year.

The United States and other nations have long expressed concern about the amount of cash being sent out of the country — an estimated $4.5 billion last year, according to the U.S. Congressional Research Service.

To help Afghanistan track cash moving through the airport, the U.S. purchased more than $100,000 worth of bulk currency counting equipment.

In its report released on Tuesday, the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction said that its staff visited the airport in September and November but never saw the cash counters being used. Moreover, the report says VIPs — some carrying cash — continue to bypass controls.