The Baghdad Post

Arab League to launch Iraq Reconstruction Conference in March

Arab league is planning to launch a conference for reconstructing Iraq’s newly-liberated areas from ISIS in next March, the Baghdad Post reported Wednesday.

On February 12-14, Kuwait organized an Iraq reconstruction conference where a total $30 billion in pledges were made.

The conference was originally seeking $88.2 billion to reconstruct the devastation created by ISIS.

The biggest pledge at the gathering in Kuwait came from Turkey, which announced $5 billion in credit to Iraq, while Kuwait’s ruling emir said his oil-rich nation will give $1 billion in loans and $1 billion in direct investments.

Saudi Arabia pledged $1.5 billion while the Kuwait-based Arab Fund says Iraq will receive $1.5 billion in infrastructure aid in coming years.

Qatar, which is embroiled in a diplomatic crisis with a quartet of Arab nations led by Riyadh, pledged $1 billion. The United Arab Emirates pledged $500 million, as did the Islamic Development Bank. Germany pledged 500 million euros ($617 million) and the European Union 400 million euros ($494 million).

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 $3 billion in loans and other financing to help American firms invest in Iraq.