$30 bln pledged at donor conference for Iraq’s reconstruction
:: A total of $30 bln were pledged on Wednesday at a donor conference for Iraq’s reconstruction after the country’s devastating war with ISIS, falling well short of the $88.2 bln Baghdad is seeking.
The biggest pledge at the gathering in Kuwait came from Turkey, which announced $5 bln in credit to Iraq, while Kuwait’s ruling emir said his oil-rich nation will give one billion dollars in loans and one billion dollars in direct investments.
Saudi Arabia pledged $1.5 bln while the Kuwait-based Arab Fund says Iraq will receive $1.5 bln in infrastructure aid in coming years.
Qatar, which is embroiled in a diplomatic crisis with a quartet of Arab nations led by Riyadh, pledged one billion dollars.
The United Arab Emirates pledged $500 mln, as did the Islamic Development Bank.
Germany pledged 500 million euros ($617 mln) and the European Union 400 million euros ($494 mln).
The United States, which has been embroiled in Iraq since its 2003 invasion that toppled dictator Saddam Hussein, did not directly give at the conference Wednesday in Kuwait City.
However, it plans to offer over three billion US dollars in loans and other financing to help American firms invest in Iraq.
Kuwait’s donation was in many ways stunning as only a generation ago, Saddam Hussein invaded the small, oil-rich nation.
Iraq FM: Reconstruction aid pledges fall short
Iraqi Foreign Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari said on Wednesday that the pledges made at an international aid conference to rebuild his country were less than what Iraq requires.
At the same news conference, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called the conference “an enormous success”.
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