By Padraig O'Hannelly.
A recent report from Al Monitor highlights the shocking number of official and unofficial holidays in Iraq, and the affect that this is having on commercial activity and education. But that's just part of the picture.
Due to its plentiful oil reserves, many would consider Iraq to be an example of a rentier state, whose main function is to distribute the profits from exported natural resources.
It might sound like a good deal, but at current oil prices Iraq will have difficulty balancing its budget if it also wants to defeat the Islamic State and continue with its program of building houses and developing infrastructure.
Over-staffing in the public sector and excessively generous public holidays will not help the country achieve those objectives.
With the amount of work still to be done in Iraq, the abundance of its natural resources is no excuse for allowing its human resources to lie idle.
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