Babel PIC gives new invest opportunities to foreign and local companies

Iraq-2009-25123-c6574068The Babylon Provincial Investment Commission (PIC) granted new licenses to a number of foreign and domestic investment companies.

The head of the Babylon PIC, Alaa Harba, stated in a press statement that the Commission has granted investment licenses to a number of companies under the new investment law.

One of the largest investment licenses was granted to Middle Euphrates to set up a factory for packaging of dates, valued at 538 million dinars. The project will require hiring more than 200 workers, and because Babylon is the center for cultivation of palm trees, this investment is expected to result in follow on projects to serve the producers of dates in the province. Mr. Harba expressed that he hopes this project contributes to the export of Iraqi dates in support of the national economy.

Without specifying name of the projects, there were other companies that received investment licenses for eight other projects.

Open Invitation by US Commercial Service

Dear Businessmen & Businesswomen of Iraq,

The U.S. Commercial Service is now recruiting Iraqi companies to attend Power-Gen International 2009 (PGI 2009) held at Las Vegas Convention Center, Las Vegas, Nevada on 8-10 December 2009.

PGI is the electric power generation idustry’s largest event in the world, attracting more than 18,000 attendees and 1,200 exhibitors from over 75 countries. Focused on providing the latest updates and information on key generation issues, PGI features a multi-track conference program plus curriculum of pre-conference courses. The world’s largest power exhibition is held concurrently with the conference, showcasing thousands of products, technologies and services. For more information on PGI 2009, please check out the show’s website: www.power-gen.com

As a member of our delegation to this important trade show, the U.S. Commercial Service provides the following services for a fee of $500:

Prior to departing for the U.S., Commercial Advisor (CA) Sam Kafil will brief you about doing business with U.S. companies, review your travel plans, schedule meetings for you during the show with U.S. companies interested in doing business in Iraq, prepare a one page profile of your company for distribution during the show and assist you with your visa application to the U.S.
CA Kafil will also attend the show with you and will be available to assist you with meetings and questions about doing business with U.S. companies. We will register you as a member of our Iraqi Delegation and as part of our delegation you will have free access to the International Business Center where you can hold private business meetings.
After the show CA Kafil will continue to work with you to assist you to follow-up with the U.S. companies in which you are interested.

If you wish to participate in PGI 2009, please contact one of our Commercial Advisors for additional information about the trade show or if you have any questions about our services:

Mr.Kurdo Jaff
Commercial Advisor
U.S. Commercial Services
U.S. Embassy- Baghdad
Cell:07704430172
Email:Kurdo.Jaff@mail.doc.gov Mr. Osama Kafil-Hussain
Commercial Advisor
U.S. Commercial Services
U.S. Embassy-Baghdad
Cell: 07704430467
Email:Sam.Kafil@mail.doc.gov Mr. Dara Saeed
Commercial Advisor
U.S. Commercial Service
U.S. Embassy-Baghdad Cell: 0750479-1668
Email:SaeedDN@State.gov

I hope you will take advantage of this opportunity to participate in this important trade show. It is a great way to see all the latest technology in the industry and to talk to businessmen about their products and services!

Sincerely,
Cheryl Dukelow
Acting Senior Commercial Counselor
US Commercial Service- Baghdad

NIC Chairman meets Egyptian Minister of Investment to discuss the latest amendment to Iraq’s investment law

Dr. Sami Al-Araji, Chairman of the Iraqi National Investment Commission (NIC) met Dr. Mahmud Mohi El Din, Egyptian Minister of Investment in Cairo. The two discussed the prospects of strategic cooperation between the NIC and the Egyptian Ministry of Investment. During the meeting, they talked about capacity building at their respective Commissions through the use of specialized training courses in Egypt.

Dr. Sami Al-Araji presented investment opportunities available in Iraq to an audience of businessmen, reminding them that Iraq is “Open for Business”. Dr. Sami also met separately with Egyptian business leaders in the public and private sectors, presenting a detailed explanation of the Iraqi investment laws, the amendments that were recently adopted, and how the amendments represent a concession to Arab, foreign, and Iraqi investors alike. Special emphasis was placed on the industrial and housing sectors due to the growing need for low-cost residential communities in Iraq.

In return, Egyptian Minister, Dr. Mahmud, expressed his country’s desire to actively participate in the reconstruction work in Iraq and reinstate agreements that had remained unfulfilled between the two countries. Both will work toward joint innovation and the promotion of investment and the improvement of one-stop shop operations (an essential part in the investment process in any country). Dr. Mahmud also commented that the amendment to the Iraqi investment law, which includes provisions for land ownership by foreign investors building housing projects, is a great opportunity for Egyptian companies specializing in that sector.
The bilateral meetings yielded 16 agreements and memoranda of understanding as well as 7 agreements ready to be finalized.

Upcoming Investment Conferences in 2009

The NIC will be participating in a number of investment conferences including:
Berlin, German (November 6-9th)
Paris, France (November 16-18th)
Poland (November 20th)
Japanese conference in Baghdad
Details on these conferences will be provided shortly.

Successful U.S. Iraqi Investment Conference in Washington DC Oct 20-21

Iraq’s National Investment Commission, led by Chairman Dr. Sami Al-Araji, has just concluded an extremely successful business conference at the Hyatt Regency hotel in Washington D.C. In addition to Dr. al-Araji, Iraq was represented by Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki, the Ministers of Oil, Trade, Finance, and Agriculture, Governors of Iraq’s provinces, and a contingent of prominent business leaders. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton represented the interests of the U.S. Government.

Approximately 1,100 investors attended the sold-out conference from across the U.S. and around the world. The conference consisted of a series of presentations highlighting the readiness of Iraq for international investment, several breakout sessions that delved more deeply into 12 main sectors of Iraq’s economy, and a series of afternoon matchmaking sessions that were structured for direct business to business meetings between Iraqi and American businesses.

The National Investment Commission presented the conference attendees with a list of over 750 projects ready for investment, across all sectors of the economy. In his speech, Chairman Al-Araji highlighted several recent positive steps that Iraq has taken to improve its investment climate, including passing an amendment to its current Investment Law allowing foreign investors pursuing housing-related infrastructure projects to own land. He also highlighted the NIC’s investor licensing and coordination department, known as the One Stop Shop. Dr. Al-Araji remarked:
“Why invest in Iraq? There has never been a better time to invest in Iraq. Iraq has emerged from the conflicts of the past with tremendous potential for investment from local, regional and global companies.”

Secretary Clinton was equally forceful in encouraging investors to seize the opportunity in Iraq with all possible speed, as she remarked,

“The security situation has improved. The conditions for investment are stronger. And in the words of an Arab proverb, ‘Dawn does not come twice to awaken a man’ or a woman. The world is watching for every opportunity to invest in Iraq, and companies that wait too long may discover they are too late.”

The National Investment Commission Completes the Investment Map

investment_map-8efa803d
The National Investment Commission has updated the list of investment opportunities available in their investment map. These opportunities cover various economic sectors and have been contributed by the Ministries and provinces. The original list was created in April 2009 and has been updated in preparation of the Iraqi-US Investment Conference to be held in Washington DC from October 20th-21st.
The investment map includes a list of more than 750 opportunities covering all economic sectors. In terms of the number of opportunities available, the industry and manufacturing sector accounts for 30.5%, followed by youth and sports sectors (13%), health (12%) and transport, housing, and agriculture (7.5% each). Service projects accounted for 6%, with electricity and tourism projects each accounting for 5% .

Passage of the first amendment to Investment Law 13

The NIC is proud to announce that last week the Iraqi Parliament has reviewed and approved the first draft amendment to Investment Law 13. The amendment contains many important aspects that will foster investment in Iraq including the ability for foreigners to own land for the purposes of housing projects; placing the land designated for investment projects under the authority of the NIC instead of different ministries. Additionally the amendment details the organization and support to the Provincial Investment Commissions and as well as securing privileges for public and private partnerships especially those partnering with State Owned Enterprises. The amendment also waives the authority of Law 32, 1986 for all investment projects.

Workshop reinforcing the Government to invest in Iraq

Under the title (translation environment your business to a successful strategy to invest in the provinces), the Office of Private Sector Development at the U.S. Embassy in collaboration with the Center for International Private Enterprise (سايب CIPE) workshop booster for members of investment authorities in the provinces for the period 5-6 / 10/2009 has A delegation from the National Investment Commission, headed by Mr. Vice President of the Salar Mohammed Amin professor and membership Dr. Ikram Abdulaziz, Director General of the Department of Economic and Mr. Firas Hrbun, supervisor of the Provincial Coordination Section and some employees of the body.
 
The workshop was attended by representatives of the investment bodies in the provinces and Mrs. John Reid, Senior Advisor – Office of Private Sector Development in the embassy Amartikih, and this workshop aims to draw a roadmap enables members of the investment bodies of crystallizing an effective strategy to invest in their home provinces, through a series of presentations that are based on enhance the understanding of members of the investment in the provincial bodies for their role in the context of the world’s leading practice and lessons learned with the definition of axes develop a successful strategy to invest in the provinces as well as understand the characteristics of business environments in the Iraqi provinces and methods of analysis and comparison measurement reference point and arranged according to its status.
 
Also included presentations also assess the business environment through surveys and global business indicators and improve the local business environment through the world’s leading practices.
 
This has opened the Vice-President of the Commission agenda, a speech in which he praised the efforts made by the Office of Private Sector Development at the U.S. embassy in promoting the work of Government investment and the importance of this workshop in shaping the perceptions of members of the Government investment in the provinces.

A Workshop Reinforcing Investment Commissions across Iraq

Private Sector Development Office at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, in cooperation with Center for International Private Enterprise (CIPE), hosted a workshop focusing on successful investment strategies for Iraqi provinces. Members of Iraq’s Provincial Investment Commissions (PICs) were the target audience during this two day seminar (October 5-6th, 2009). A delegation from the Iraqi National Investment Commission (NIC) headed by the Deputy Chairman Dr. Salar Mohamad Ameen was accompanied by Dr.Ekram Abd-Alaziz, Director General of the NIC Economic Department, and Mr. Firas Harboon, the Director General of Provincial Coordination, as well as other NIC staff members.

Ms. June Reed of the Private Sector Development Office at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad remarked, “This workshop aims to draw a roadmap that helps the investment commission members to develop an effective strategy for investment in their provinces. Through a series of presentations, PIC members will enhance their understanding of their role in the context of global best practices and explore lessons learned in order to define successful strategies for investment in Iraq’s provinces. In addition, members will improve their understanding of the make-up of the different business environments, methods of analysis, and benchmarking techniques.”

The presentation included an evaluation of business environments through surveys of global business as well as case studies exploring the improvement of local business using international best practices.

The Deputy Chairman, Dr. Salar, opened the workshop by praising the efforts of the Private Sector Development Office at the U.S. Embassy, particularly in reinforcing the work of the PICs. He also discussed the importance of the workshop to the PIC members and the benefit brought by gathering them this central location to learn together.

Workshop reinforcing the Government to invest in Iraq

Under the title (translation environment your business to a successful strategy to invest in the provinces), the Office of Private Sector Development at the U.S. Embassy in collaboration with the Center for International Private Enterprise (سايب CIPE) workshop booster for members of investment authorities in the provinces for the period 5-6 / 10/2009 has A delegation from the National Investment Commission, headed by Mr. Vice President of the Salar Mohammed Amin professor and membership Dr. Ikram Abdulaziz, Director General of the Department of Economic and Mr. Firas Hrbun, supervisor of the Provincial Coordination Section and some employees of the body.
 
The workshop was attended by representatives of the investment bodies in the provinces and Mrs. John Reid, Senior Advisor – Office of Private Sector Development in the embassy Amartikih, and this workshop aims to draw a roadmap enables members of the investment bodies of crystallizing an effective strategy to invest in their home provinces, through a series of presentations that are based on enhance the understanding of members of the investment in the provincial bodies for their role in the context of the world’s leading practice and lessons learned with the definition of axes develop a successful strategy to invest in the provinces as well as understand the characteristics of business environments in the Iraqi provinces and methods of analysis and comparison measurement reference point and arranged according to its status.
 
Also included presentations also assess the business environment through surveys and global business indicators and improve the local business environment through the world’s leading practices.
 
This has opened the Vice-President of the Commission agenda, a speech in which he praised the efforts made by the Office of Private Sector Development at the U.S. embassy in promoting the work of Government investment and the importance of this workshop in shaping the perceptions of members of the Government investment in the provinces.