Editorial: Iraqi economy in the world’s fastest…growing at a crossroads

D. Kamal Basri Dean of the Iraqi Institute for Economic Reform

Iraqi economy in the world’s fastest-growing

Issued by the Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BAML) in the United States report shows that Iraq will Achieve the highest growth rate for the years 2012-2013 in the world, data showed Wall Street bank (Wall Street bank’s data) that Iraq will achieve the highest growth rate in GDP (GDP) for 2012, which amounts to 10.5%, and China ranked second at 7.7% and the top ten economies in the world will not exceed its estimated growth rate of 5.5% for the same year.

The same source reported that in 2013 the will of the Iraqi economy highest growth rate equal to 8.2%, followed by China. The expected growth referred to above is due mainly to the success of the oil ministry, which led to the increase in oil production to more than 3.3 million barrels per day, has been achieved this progress by decades licensing rounds concluded by the Iraqi government with international oil companies to develop the fields.

The truth is that Iraq has made progress in the political, economic, At the political level achieved significant progress through: the development of the practice of the individual to freedom of personal, intellectual and political, and democratic practices and of the referendum on the constitution and the holding of general and local elections, as well as the adoption of legislation supportive of decentralization, even Iraq has become truly a milestone in the Arab region, despite the challenges and shortcomings plaguing through the political process. On the economic front Iraq achieved various Successes for the period from 2004 -2011:

1 decline in the unemployment rate from 51% to 15%. 2 reduced poverty from 54% to 23%. 3 low rate of inflation from 65% to 6% . four high sanitation and sewer system from 6% to 36%. 5 high production of electric power from 3,500 to 7 500 MW. 6 high per capita GDP from 3000 to five thousand dollars. seven reduced Iraq’s debt of $ 127 billion to $ 54 billion.

But the ability Aljhazaovernma to provide basic services is still below the required level due to lack of access quantum leap in the governance of public institutions, where we find that 20% of families is dissatisfied with health services and housing, and 30% of the level of educational services, and 60% for other services all the water and electricity (according to data from the Ministry of Planning).

The danger lies upwardly Spiraling and the enormous revenues oil, with the continued reluctance of the public and private sector in the implementation of service projects (which would provide basic services to citizens), and the continuing weakness in the application of vocabulary governance in public institutions, will lead to fueling the political divide and the sectarian and ethnic into conflict not know Mdyate (According to reports by the World Bank).

Indeed now that Iraq is at a crossroads and either of the following situations:

1 – optimistic: This situation requires: (a) raise the human development indicators by Investing in the necessary infrastructure for the purpose of access to the provision of basic needs of the citizens of public services, especially education to raise its potential intellectual and scientific support for the development and good governance and the rule of law. (B) reform the laws and procedures that are impeding the development in order to create a supportive environment for the advancement of economic activities to find a competitive base in a globalized world. According to the above conditions are expected to vary rates of GDP components so that the contribution of oil below 30%, and with the imposition of achieving this case means a great deal of development and economic well-being of the citizen.

2 – missed opportunity: the case achieved by supporting reform of the laws to change, but far from achieving human development and the rule of law. In other words that the government undertake the necessary actions by the legislation of laws and procedures in support of economic reform, but the absence of the rule of law remains (quotas) and good governance challenge in the implementation of economic projects, including infrastructure. And it is expected to be the contribution of oil in GDP by more than half.

3 – disappointment: is a situation that can not be achieved by supporting reform of the laws to change, but are evolving human development and the rule of law. The disappointment comes from the progress of human development indicators and provide queens rule of law and good governance can not find legal environment chock interview and incubator for change and development. The structure is expected to be dominant GDP him to a lesser extent by the oil sector, due to the increased contribution of other sectors relatively .

4 – despair: is a situation that does not happen reform of the laws do not occur advanced in human development and the rule of law. In this case, the ratio of the contribution of the oil sector on the rest of the tyrant components of GDP and more than 50%. Perhaps the situation that Iraq is going through the time being, which is characterized by: non-recognition and legislation important laws such as the law of oil and gas, infrastructure and law of parties and others, and the continuation of low human development indicators (due to poor delivery of public services) represents the fourth case “despair.”

The foregoing, we find that it requires a decisive and realistic solution is embodied in adopting a new approach to speed up the building of infrastructure . This solution includes the adoption of “private sector participation contracts for the year” as a strategic option in the current phase, and as an alternative to the style of the existing contract and through which can overcome all problems of inadequate government allocations, and address the lack of efficient performance in the implementation of projects. And through these contracts rehabilitate the private and public sectors, and through Twining local institutions with foreign companies contracted, and the fruits of these contracts of technology transfer and modern traditions.

Based economic development in many countries of the world on the leadership role of the government (as is the case in Singapore, Malaysia, Brazil and China), and in Iraq has become in the aftermath of the political process and its negative impacts on non-decision-making and legislation necessary laws, no secret that it requires leadership unconventional but professional – impartial Technocratic political affiliation. Past years have revealed that political competition which flooded the institutions and personnel departments do not have the ability to deliver appropriate background and to pick out the fruits of training and rehabilitation. Also prevented the existing policy of attracting qualified Iraqi material and give them the privileges enjoyed by the political class (as happened in countries such as Turkey, Malaysia and Korea). Each estimate, by the Council or the reconstruction is sparing the country from the risk of decisions or inappropriate policies.

Finally, democracy in Iraq is still reduced and the National Action monopoly through partisan political action (which is still not done regulated by law!), Either non-governmental institutions and non-political are trapping procedures and laws is not as flexible as it does not have any government support. The oppression of non-governmental organizations in this form will deprive citizens to know the truth about the way things happened the dimensions of the enactment of the infrastructure, and Disrupt the repair of the ration card, and delayed Fueling economic development policy. The support of civil society organizations representing the contribution in building the edifice of democracy and development.