The Kurdish Regional Government’s President Masoud Barzani has been telling a delegation of Iraq Britain Business Council members the door to trade with the Kurdish region was wide open.
He said: “I hope that as companies you will support us at this critical time in the development of Kurdistan.
“There are British businesses here already and we want to see more growth.
“There is a willingness to have a relationship, I want to see a deepening relationship. We are very keen to facilitate this for you.
The IBBC delegation, led by Executive Chairman Baroness Nicholson of Winterbourne, was on three day visit which also included a meeting with the KRG Trade and Industry Minister Sinan Abdulkhalq Almed Chalabi.
Mr Chalabi said a free market policy was now operating in Iraq after decades of labouring under dead-hand of government.
Pointing to furniture and light fittings is his office he said everything in the room had been imported. He said this was a poor state of affairs and added: “ this has to change.”
He urged more British companies to step forward and assist in the development of the region so Iraq produces more of its own goods.
Another highlight was a one day conference hosted by IBBC member: The Erbil Chamber of Commerce.
Delegates heard British companies numbered the highest in companies registered by the KRG, but Nowrooz M Muhammad Amin, Director General. KRG Legal, Administrative and Financial Affairs cautioned : ” The numbers of British companies were disappointingly low.”
“We want more,” she added.
Other than hydrocarbons she listed agriculture, tourism and industrial sectors as a priorities.
(Picture: IBBC Executive Chairman Baroness Nicholson (left) meets KRG President Masoud Barzani)