An Iraqi economic expert said on Thursday that the Iraqi government should embark on a privatization program to improve the state of industry in the country.
Fadhel Al-Moussawi told AKnews, "The Iraqi government has not been successful in improving the country's industrial conditions in the past several years due to the reluctance and lack of plan by the Ministry of Industry and the companies affiliated with it. There are many reasons for that, including low budget allocations set by the Ministry of Finance.”
"The best solution for the return of Iraq's industrial activity is privatizing all companies affiliated with the Ministry of Industry and adjusting prices of their products in a way that would fit the prices of the imported products from industrial countries,” Moussawi added.
Meanwhile, an advisor in the Iraqi government, Ahmed Rashid said, "The industrial sector in Iraq needs a comprehensive and integrated plan. The essential thing is to provide the necessary funds to the companies that belong to the Industry Ministry and the companies that have a mixed government and private funding.”
"The transformation of the Ministry of Industry’s institutions to self-financing companies at the moment is completely inappropriate and will contribute to complicating matters in the Iraqi market. But we wish to be able to turn them into profitable companies in the future.”
Iraq’s industrial sector has been heavily damaged as a result of decades of wars and international sanctions, while the country's economy mostly relies on oil exports as its major source of revenue.
A Central Bank official recently said “the problem in Iraq is that 90 percent of the wealth of the nation is in the hands of the government. So centralism always dominates the mindset everywhere”.