Iraqi authorities admitted that they are not providing facilities to foreign workers and oil companies operating in Iraq.
Oil Ministry spokesman Assem Jihad told Al-Monitor, “Iraqi parties in charge of the entrance of foreigners to Iraq are not providing facilities to contract workers and experts for foreign oil companies that were granted contracts with the Iraqi government.”
Jihad attributed the reason behind this to “the exceptional security situation the country is going through and the terrorist challenges it is facing.”
Iraq has been witnessing a spike in violence for the past two months. Car bombs and suicide bombers have claimed the lives of hundreds of Iraqis during attacks targeting markets, cafes, playgrounds and residential compounds in many provinces.
Jihad noted, however, “The importance of investment in all fields must be taken into consideration. The success of the state relies on its ability to pass laws that protect and encourage investments, in addition to creating a suitable ground and providing security and facilities to workers in investment companies.” Jihad considered the aforementioned to be “characteristic of civilized countries.”
“The non-provision of facilities does not only include the oil and investment sector in Iraq but also the rest of the fields, given the exceptional situation. We need to educate people about how to deal with the concept of investment,” he continued.
“There are still some mentalities that dub investment companies as monopolistic companies fed by the blood of the people,” Jihad noted, reiterating “the importance of dealing with this issue in a civilized manner and working on the provision of facilities so as not to transform [Iraq] into a country that pushes investments away.”
Iraq had promised to provide visas for workers with oil companies within two weeks.