Iran to allocate $5 billion to Iranian contractors in Iraq
Baku, Azerbaijan, Feb. Mar. 19
By Rahim Zamanov - Trend:
Iran plans to allocate $5 billion out of the National Development Fund to Iranian contractors working in neighbouring Iraq, Rostam Qasemi, chairman of the Iran-Iraq economic development headquarters, stated on Mar. 19, Iran's Mehr News Agency reported.
"Iranian firms should actively participate in the implementation of development projects in Iraq," he said.
He went on to note that all domestic contractors need to help the Iranian government in order to snap the country's economy out of recession.
Qasemi said on March 10 that Iranian companies should boost their presence in Iraq through implementing road and dam building, housing, industrial, as well as technical and engineering projects, the Fars News Agency reported.
The year 2013 registered high levels of commercial exchanges between Iraq and Iran, which reached according to both Iraqi and Iranian officials, more than $12 billion.
This comes at a time when the Iraqi government aspires to increase trade between the two with a goal of $15 billion, according to a report published by Al-Monitor in December 2013.
Advisor to the Iraqi Prime Minister for Economic Affairs Abdul Hussein al-Anbaki said that the most common goods imported from Iran to Iraq are canned food, including cheese and dairy products, as well as soft drinks, meat, vegetable oil, household items and electrical appliances.
He noted that Iran has had an important weight in economic transactions with Iraq, notably since 2003 and pointed to the ease of commercial exchange between the two countries in terms of transportation and quality of goods among other factors.
Thus according to Musawi, it is only normal for the two countries commercial exchanges to increase.
Iran is currently exporting 24 billion cubic meters of gas to Iraq annually. Iraq also imports 400 megawatts of power from Iran, Tehran Times reported.
The Iranian Trade Development Organisation announced in June 2013 that Iraq is the biggest importer of Iranian goods, affirming that 72 percent of Iran's exports go to Iraq. It also noted the Iraqi imports of Iranian goods have increased by 15.7 percent by comparison to last year.
Edited by S.M.