Iraq seeks $100 billion from donors for post-ISIL reconstruction
Feb 15 2018
According to Kurdish site Rudaw.net, a number of officials from the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) are expected to attend Kuwait's global donor conference where they will present investment projects.
The meeting will be co-chaired by Kuwait and Iraq, as well as the UN, European Union and the World Bank.
The participants of Kuwait International Conference for the Reconstruction of Iraq (KICRI) stressed the importance of the human dimension in supporting the reconstruction of Iraq.
The meeting, which brings together several economic powers, as well as regional and global organisations, will discuss the required contributions to rebuilding Iraq after many years of war and conflict, reports Xinhua news agency. Jobs for young people could be provided during the rebuilding of homes, schools and other vital infrastructure systems in the country.
U.S. officials have already said there will be no new pledges of assistance for Iraq's reconstruction drive, after Washington pumped some $60 billion into rebuilding the country following the US-led invasion toppled Saddam Hussein in 2003.
Iraq needs US$88.2 billion to rebuild after years of war against the Islamic State group, Planning Minister Salman al-Jumaili said Monday, as an global conference on the country's reconstruction opened in Kuwait.
Around 138,000 housing units had been damaged and half of them were completely destroyed said Mustafa al-Hiti, who runs Iraq's Reconstruction Fund for Areas Affected by Terroristic Operations.
Nations could help by acting as guarantors with lenders, allowing Iraq to take out soft loans to fund infrastructure projects, Mahdi al-Alaq, secretary general of Iraq's Council of Ministers, told the conference.
"All told, the Iraq government is seeking about $100 billion in foreign investment for its energy, agricultural and transport sectors", added WSJ.
It announced $330 million alone had been pledged Monday for Iraq at a humanitarian conference in Kuwait City.
"If the global community doesn't help the government of Iraq to stabilise these areas (devastated by the war) the gains against Daesh could be at risk", she said, using the Arabic acronym for Islamic State.
Baghdad has said it is determined to tackle the red tape and corruption that hamper investment. The United States, which led the coalition that provided the Iraqi armed forces with crucial air-support in the fight against IS, does not plan on pledging any money at the Kuwait conference, according to American officials.
Clean-up crews in Mosul, Iraq, after the city was recaptured from the Islamic State in July past year.
Billions of dollars poured into Iraq after the 2003 US -led invasion that toppled dictator Saddam Hussein, with what feels now like little visible effect.
However, officials acknowledge a feeling of fatigue from worldwide donors, especially after the wars in Iraq and Syria sparked the biggest mass migration since World War II.