Businessman: Government biggest obstacle facing us

Amid the recent boom in oil production in Iraq, Hoteliers must deal with corruption and lack of experience and that Atharboa for attracting weddings.

Coral Hotel in Baghdad is the first of its kind in Iraq, where most of the hotels are managed by the government or English-language ‘Let us that Nredakm’. At the entrance stands Ugandan boys dressed in a kaftan the Maroni color to greet the guests, dreamy music emitted from the hall of marble and wood. In the upstairs suite curtains hanging it polished up Price per night to $ 300.

The opening of such a luxurious hotel requires a man not afraid to take risks, such as Imad al-Yasiri, who said that previous Mjasvath include oil smuggling in defiance of United Nations sanctions in the nineties, and the profit potential bumper worth the risk. Baghdad hampered by political inertia, corruption and poor infrastructure and concerns about the security situation in the area has become Inflamed in the recent period, but at the same time as seen Yasser and other considered the first phase of the boom because the capital of this oil-rich country into a magnet for foreign companies and makers of deals, In August exceeded Iraq’s neighbor Iran as the second largest oil producer in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, and in September the Iraqi government unveiled plans for infrastructure projects worth $ 42 billion, and last week agreed on an annual budget of approximately $ 119 billion.

It seems that other Iraqis have the same aspirations, the central bank has commissioned Zaha Hadid architectural world-renowned building its new headquarters. Across the Tigris River Centsb New Shopping Mall at a cost of $ 100 million near the Mansour district, where the fast-food restaurants ornate décor glowing with familiar names such as Florida Fried Chicken (Florida Fried Chicken) and Pizza Hut, very business activity.

Yasiri -43 years – a descendant of a family of religious and prefers to wear jeans and T-shirts Italian, shareholder also a member of Pepsi Baghdad, he also distributes cigarettes French luxury and dairy products Saudi, but says the construction and operation of the hotel is the effort did not try it in his career. He faces obstacles and additional costs that Frustrate all private initiatives in Iraq, he must pay bribes to government officials in order to maintain the continued progress of the project and import high quality materials and experts, echoing tales entrepreneurs others and that is a fact of business in Iraq. The project took approximately two and a cost of $ 13 million. He describes a screaming match took place earlier this year between him and the Baghdad Municipality inspectors, who wanted to pour gravel or concrete on newly Manicured garden, and ended the dispute in contact with the Mayor of Baghdad.

Director of Public Relations at the secretariat of Baghdad, Hakim Abdul Zahra acknowledged that corruption is a problem, but the local government is doing its best to eliminate it, especially in large enterprises ‘We can not control the 14 thousand employees’, this is the same speech that the central government’s claim as well. In a report to the U.S. Congress released Tuesday, said the inspector general for Iraq reconstruction that corruption remains one of the biggest obstacles to the democratic progress in the country and quoted an Iraqi official smuggling $ 800 million out of Iraq illegally each week. Also, corruption and business Shoddy harmed project cost $ 300 million to renovate a number of hotels Baghdad state-owned for the Arab summit held in the Iraqi capital earlier this year, and the result was restorations partial or incomplete in some facilities; and decorated rooms Chinese low-cost materials or Turkish-made with cheap furniture in other facilities; also ruled out a lot of things required; with a lot of employees who lack the most basic skills to deal with the requirements of the guests. So it has Yasiri personally supervised the entire process of building a hotel, where he rented the United Arab Emirates and French companies and Omani to make everything custom of putting the final touches on the hotel to fine wooden furniture and beautiful sculptures to furniture and pillows.

In order to ensure continuous electrical power to the hotel rooms of the 82 rooms, was Yasiri rent a vacant piece of land to erect three generators, also ensure that entrenched cultural traditions that do not interfere with the operation of luxury hotels. Customers are the main executives of foreign business companies, in the morning filled with ‘mood cafe’ at the hotel with people of different nationalities, but at the end of week book the place for Grooms young Iraqis, it is habits that accompany Iraqi families Aerysin to hotel room Balhlahl and singing.

Cadre work and MRO also pose problems, with 25 percent of Iraqis are unemployed, but it is difficult to find local workers with sufficient skill and enthusiasm . In order to avoid convoluted procedures for visa and work permits required to bring foreign workers, has hired Yasiri some workers from Bangladesh, India, who have lost their jobs in the U.S. military bases after the U.S. withdrawal. However, it took more than a month to bring in a specialist technician from Saudi Arabia in order to re-programming electronic locks of the hotel.

Yasiri says if all goes in Coral well, the next goal will be the restoration of the Babylon Hotel in the capital in which he got on the shares recently, ‘Valtrmim which was sponsored by the government and cost $ 32 million did not yield anything meaningful. Government is the biggest obstacle we face.