(MENAFN- Trend News Agency ) Baku, Azerbaijan, Feb. 22
By Azer Ahmadbayli – Trend:
The task of rebuilding Iraqi economy is currently seen much harder to do than fighting with IS (the Islamic State terrorist organization), but anyway it is much better than the endless explosions in Baghdad and loss of thousands of human lives.
A lot has been said about the difficulties Iraq could face within this long and complicated process. War-ravaged cities, widespread corruption (Iraq ranks among the top ten most corrupted states), sectarian strife in Iraqi society, millions of displaced people, remnant of IS members hidden in the country, current relations with the Kurdish autonomy being, let's say, not so smooth, damaged health and sanitation system, etc. – those factors make the country's revival a great challenge.
What can Iraq be given credit for? Perhaps, its rich resources, with oil in the leading spot.
I don't know how much the Iraqi people and the government are motivated to take on the challenges, and whether the motivation is similar to the one Germans had after the WW2.
Despite relatively good amount for the first try, the promised funds should be transformed from verbal commitment to real money, and apart from Iraq's spoiled record as a corrupt state there is one more factor which will likely play a decisive role in this transformation and in possible further financial inflows.
Many of the Conference participants limited themselves with assurances to the Iraqi government in the matter of getting Iraq back on its feet.
The US and most of the GCC states are among Iraq's prospective investors. However, Washington hasn't pledged any funds within the Conference. The Gulf countries have each allocated average by one billion. Just for courtesy.
The US and its Arab allies are slow to invest large amounts of money until Iraq is under strong Iranian influence.
Real financial aid will largely depend on the outcome of the forthcoming elections in this country. To be more precise, greater investments are likely to be made conditional upon a policy the new Iraqi Government will conduct, particularly towards Tehran.
Speaking on the sidelines of the Conference, Saudi Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir described the Iranian presence in Iraq as 'destructive'. He expressed hope that Baghdad, in cooperation with neighboring countries, can build a better future for its people, Middle East Monitor reported.
This is a clear message to Baghdad: 'The further away you get from Iran, the more chances for you to receive our assistance.'
It is in this context that his comments should be interpreted.
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