More Boom in Iraq

Iraqi-American Haider Ajina forwards this editorial from the Washington Times:

Did you know that Iraqi real-estate prices have gone up several hundred percent since the fall of Saddam Hussein? That Iraqi workers’ salaries have increased more than 100 percent in that time?

That the number of cars in violence-torn Baghdad has grown by 500 percent in the same period?

That the Iraqi construction, retail and wholesale trade sectors are all growing at a healthy pace?

Chances are that you are astonished by these facts. I certainly was when I read them in an article by Silvia Spring in the end-of-the-year edition of Newsweek International.

The piece is titled “Iraq’s Economy is Booming” and it’s a revelation. It goes on to mention that the number of registered businesses has increased from 8,000 to 34,000 in three years; that the number of cell phone subscribers has increased from 1.4 million to 7.1 million; that the stores are stocked with goods, and that consumers are buying them; that taxes have been cut, government revenues are up and that oil revenues and foreign grants are estimated at $41 billion for the year just ended.

Moreover, “Iraq’s official economic institutions are making progress,” the Kurdish region in the north is booming and with the oil fields in the south increasingly secure, oil production revenues are projected to grow substantially. The Global Insight firm,which tracks international economic activity, estimates Iraq’s GDP growth at 17 percent for 2005 and projected 13 percent for 2006. The World Bank’s estimate is lower (four percent for 2006), but the fact that there is any economic growth at all in Iraq will come as a shock to most people.

Don’t Forget This From Wednesday:
Saddam’s Execution Causes Surge… In Iraqi Economy

HotAir has the encouraging story today of the Haditha Dam project in Iraq.

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