The Trade Secretary of the United Kingdom, Dr Liam Fox, has announced the availability of a further £1 billion in UK Export Finance (UKEF) to support projects undertaken by British companies in Iraq, bringing its total support for the country to £2 billion.
The secretary has been on a 3 day visit to Baghdad to hold trade discussions with senior ministers including the Prime Minister and President, with the funding to help accelerate key infrastructure projects in the country as the nation rebuilds services and economic development.
So far UKEF funding has supported a number of projects in Iraq including the construction of new and refurbishment of existing power stations across the country. These projects have delivered a significant rise in power capacity for the country as well as a boost in local jobs, training and stability for regions in need to infrastructure developments.
On the deal, Liam Fox commented:
"The atmosphere in Baghdad is one of optimism – it is a country which is having an increasingly stable period at a time of significant unrest in the wider region. The British government, working closely with the UK private sector and our Iraqi partners, have a key role to play in the country’s long-term prosperity. The £1 billion we have announced today will significantly strengthen our ability to do just that.
Iraq’s future is bright, and my international economic department will continue to work tirelessly to ensure it maintains this stability, allowing the hard work of its talented citizens to flourish for the benefit of all.
Trade is about more than economic self-interest, it is the means through which we deliver the mutual prosperity that underpins our collective security. That is the true prize of trade policy and promotion done right."