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Iraq talks investment with India delegation
by Staff Writers
Baghdad (AFP) Oct 16, 2011

Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister Hussein al-Shahristani on Sunday called on a visiting Indian delegation to make much-needed investments in Iraq's energy, industry and housing sectors.

"Shahristani discussed the means for Indian investment and developing the industrial and oil sectors in Iraq with an Indian delegation," according to a statement from his office.

Shahristani's position includes particular responsibility for energy issues.

"Iraq encourages foreign companies to enter the Iraqi markets through investment and rebuilding infrastructure," Shahristani said.

He also called on "Indian companies to invest in low-cost housing, because the country really needs it."

The Indian delegation was made up of 15 companies specialising in sectors including oil, gas, automobiles, agricultural vehicles, housing and health, the statement said.

Iraq currently produces around 2.9 million barrels per day (bpd), with exports of crude accounting for the lion's share of government income, but seeks to be capable of producing 12 million bpd by 2017.

Iraqi National Investment Commission Chairman Sami al-Araji said in August that that new housing was the country's top priority in terms of attracting foreign investment. Iraq is seeking to build one million new housing units nationwide in the coming years.

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