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Confabs on Iraq reconstruction, NGOs kick off today in Kuwait

KICRI to be held under the auspices of HH the Amir

A picture taken on Feb 9 shows flags of the 70 countries participating in the Kuwait International Conference for Reconstruction of Iraq, flying along a highway in the capital Kuwait City. (AFP)

KUWAIT CITY, Feb 11, (KUNA): The three-day Kuwait International Conference for the Reconstruction of Iraq (KICRI) is due to kick off tomorrow (Monday) amid great aspirations by the Iraqis who eager for a positive outcome and tangible contributions that will help rebuild their war-torn country.

The conference, which is under the auspices of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, will bring together a number of economically powerful countries, as well as regional and international organizations that will focus on coming up with needed contributions to rebuild Iraq after many years of war and conflicts that ripped through various parts of the country.

The conference will also touch on several developments and vital aspects pertaining to Iraq, including the participation of the private sector in the reconstruction process. The World Bank, as a major contributor to the event, will provide the required investment guarantees for private companies and institutions to participate in the development of Iraq.

The conference will be cochaired by Kuwait and Iraq, as well as the United Nations (UN), European Union (EU) and the World Bank (WB). It comes in the aftermath of liberating all Iraqi soil from the grips of the so-called Islamic State (IS); a war that left human and material losses. Iraq and its people are eager to rebuild the affected areas and establish humanitarian and developmental projects that will protect and rehabilitate the country’s infrastructure.

The Iraqi delegation participating in the conference will have a working agenda on three main topics: reconstruction and investment, supporting stability in the country, and promoting peaceful coexistence among the different segments of Iraqi society.

The first day of the conference will deliberate and assess the overall damage caused by the war and issues that need to be addressed, as well as projects to support stability, community reconciliation and peaceful coexistence. The second day will tackle procedures for creating a suitable environment for investment, through the showcasing of 212 projects in all sectors of the Iraqi economy, including projects in Iraq’s Kurdistan region. The third day, which will be attended by His Highness the Amir, the Iraqi Prime Minister, UN Secretary- General, World Bank chief and European Union policy chief coordinator, will see the declaration on the overall contributions to Iraq.

The conference also coincides with other major events, including a NGOs conference and the “Invest in Iraq” meeting, which will be attended by representatives of hundreds of companies, including a large qualitative exhibition in which a group of public companies affiliated to the Iraqi Ministry of Industry, Minerals, will participate to highlight investment opportunities in this regard.

Also in Kuwait, a ministerial meeting of the Anti-IS Coalition group will take place on Feb 13. The 73-member Coalition was established in September 2014. Meanwhile, the Non-Governmental Organizations’ (NGOs) Conference to Support the Humanitarian Situation in Iraq, due tomorrow (Monday), will focus on the latest developments and relief aid efforts in the war-torn Arab country.

Upon directives from His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, the Kuwaiti Cabinet has tasked the International Islamic Charitable Organization (IICO) with organizing the “Conference of Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) to Support the Humanitarian Situation in Iraq” on Feb 12. The conference aims at mobilizing efforts locally, regionally, and globally for NGOs to support the humanitarian situation in the Iraqi areas affected by recent armed conflicts. IICO will host various sessions that will include prominent speakers from around the world to highlight their experiences on the humanitarian field. The IICO will also review the humanitarian situation in Iraq and announce pledges and contributions by participants.

By Abdullah Al-Harbi and Abdullah Al-Marshad

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