Al-Ghad Press, April 5: Speaking at the Technical University in Basrah, US Ambassador to Iraq, Mr. Douglas Silliman, called for investing Iraqi money in Iraq rather than in Beirut, Dubai, and London, by providing jobs and setting up businesses. Mr. Silliman said, "Iraq is facing economic challenges because the oil prices have declined and reconstruction and security of the liberated areas will be costly. Iraq is undergoing a demographic change because 50 percent of the Iraqis are now under the age of 19. The private sector is slowly advancing behind the government in job creation. Iraq stands at 164 in the ranking of 190 economies according to the World Bank Enterprise Survey on the ease of starting a business,” He commended the bravery of the armed forces, including the Army, Federal Police, Rapid Response Brigades, Counter Terrorism, and Popular Mobilization. “The United States of America has been and will remain a close partner of Iraq,” said Mr. Silliman. He expressed his satisfaction with the efforts of the Iraqi government and Basrah local government to achieve decentralization, reduce bureaucracy, increase transparency, and involve the private sector.


US Ambassador calling for investment in Iraq during visit to university in Basrah