Al-Maliki: Iraq ready to amend investment laws

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The Iraqi government is ready to amend the investment laws to better suit the reconstruction effort now under way in Iraq, AFP reported Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki saying Tuesday (November 1st).

During a visit to the 38th annual Baghdad International Fair, which kicked-off Tuesday, al-Maliki said, "Iraq will continue to support companies and investments, and will amend its laws to suit the reconstruction campaign that is now underway in the country."

"We are serious about providing a guarantee of a legal environment for companies and businessmen so that reconstruction may continue, and in order to encourage them step forward," he said.

The fair is due to run for 10 days. About 500 companies from 19 countries -- including Japan, South Korea, Spain, France, Belarus, Serbia, Turkey, Holland, Syria and Jordan -- are taking part.

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    توفيق حسن

    2011-11-13

    We have often heard about investment in recent years, especially in the domain of oil. This idea of investment has started to bring to the Iraqis’ minds things like corruption and theft. In fact, I wonder about the results of bids and contracts which were supervised by al-Shahristani. The true problem is not with investment itself, but with the use of those revenues in useful sectors. Public funds are wasted in many domains, while the conversion of Iraqi fields into investment areas is increasing the threat of starvation in the country. If ever we permit the conversion of agricultural fields into investment areas, this will mean that the Iraqi citizens will not be able to buy any of the agricultural and food products. The government is supposed to support productive agricultural projects. In fact, it is supposed to subsidize packaging, dairies and similar industries. It should support farmers through holding workshops in order to develop their ideas and their performance, and to raise their awareness in the agricultural domain. Indeed, the government should promote home industries, develop and protect livestock, and solve the problems of water scarcity and salinity in much of the land. It should also increase its readiness to support farmers by all means, including the provision of seeds, pesticides, machines and other things, so that farmers can invest all their possibilities.