The visit to Iraq last weekend by US Vice-President, Joseph Biden, may help to accelerate the process of forming the next government, but the frustrating delays in reaching an agreement highlight the risks of doing business in 'frontier' countries.
Often, though, our perception of risk can be out of step with reality, and what appears to be a safe blue-chip investment may be much more dangerous than was thought. So it was with many banks in developed economies over the past three years, for example.
As our regular contributor Mark DeWeaver points out, Iraqi banks may in fact be more secure than their counterparts in much of the rest of the world, as they have such low levels of lending. This lack of lending also has the effect of making the Iraqi economy less sensitive to interest rates, and more robust in the face of any tightening of liquidity.
Taking advantage of the huge opportunities afforded by the development of Iraq is not always easy, however. While funds are flowing into the country from all over the world, it ranks just 175th out of 183 countries surveyed by the World Bank for ease of starting a business.
For that reason, it's vital to get the best advice on risk management and business development. AAIB and Upper Quartile have all the experience you need to assist your business in Iraq – for more information please contact Adrian Shaw or Gavin Jones.