On Thursday 12th October a delegation of IBBC Members, led by Baroness Nicholson, Honorary President, met with H. E. Mr Asaad A., the recently appointed Governor of Basrah. The meeting took place in the Governor’s office, included a Lunch and lasted until the early evening.

The Governor presented his plans for Basrah and asked the company representatives how they could contribute to help achieve his ambitious objectives. IBBC members used the opportunity to introduce their companies and their services to the Governor and to participate in a wide ranging discussion with him.

Mr Rasmi Al Jabri, Deputy Chairman of IBBC, who facilitated the meeting was delighted with its many outcomes. He said that with Mr Edani at the helm of the Governorate the Province had a real chance to develop and modernise. He further commented that IBBC and all of its members stood ready to support Governor in his crucial work.

The IBBC delegation included representatives of the following companies: Basrah Engineering Group, Basrah Chamber of Commerce, Dar Al-Handasah, Ernst & Young, Garda World, Gulftainer, International Islamic Bank, Khudairi Group, Pell Frischmann, Penspen, Petrofac, Raatba Contracting Company, Restrata, Rumaila Operating Organisation (ROO) and Solar Turbines.

The meeting was also attended by Dr Ali Nasir and Phil Sherwood of the AMAR foundation.

(Source: IBBC)

Agility has opened a state-of the-art training facility, known as the Center of Excellence, at the Rumaila Energy Park in southern Iraq.

In partnership with Strategic Analytics Team (SAT), the Center of Excellence offers training courses for the local workforce in the oil and gas industry, led by internationally accredited trainers.

Training covers a wide variety of topics, including health and safety, lifting and hoisting, defensive driving and logistics solutions. With SAT’s expertise in the field of operational logistics, courses will meet international oil and gas industry standards and focus on developing accredited local content, while enhancing the capabilities of Iraq-based contractors.

The Rumaila Energy Park is a one million-square meter, fully serviced industrial park developed by Agility Real Estate to provide a one-stop-shop for companies operating in southern Iraq. The park includes warehouse facilities, workshops, lay-down yards and offices. It is strategically close to the region’s major oil and gas subcontractors.

The inauguration was attended by representatives from oil and gas companies and academic institutions, as well as Iraqi government officials.

Colin Hindley, CEO, Agility Iraq, said:

“The Center of Excellence is part of Agility’s ongoing commitment to building Iraq’s infrastructure and human capital. We are strongly committed to building local capacity in our areas of operations, and this new center is part of this strategy.”

Paul Jorgensen, Senior Partner, Strategic Analytics Team, said:

Our partnership with Agility makes the Center of Excellence the first of its type in the Gulf region. At SAT, we take pride in our knowledge and skills in the logistics business, and we are in a unique position to impart the same to aspiring professionals seeking further development.

“This is a very exciting opportunity for both SAT and Agility. With a fully developed culture of learning in an open environment that enables access to the latest information and technological innovations, we want the Center of Excellence to become the go-to resource for both logistics companies and students.”

Agility Iraq has offices in Basra, Baghdad, and Erbil, serving international airports and the ports of Umm Qasr and Khor Al Zubair.

Agility’s operations include freight forwarding (air, ocean, road), cross-border trucking, customs clearance, project logistics, open yard/warehousing distribution, approved HSSE training and route surveys. All of Agility’s operations in Iraq are ISO 9001, ISO 14000, OHSAS 18001-certified.

(Source: Agility)

Finland’s Nokia will modernize and expand Zain Iraq‘s radio networks with its most advanced technologies across Karbala, Najaf and Basra, with a special focus on the holy cities of Karbala and Najaf, to support the expected increase in data and voice traffic during Zeyara as millions of people converge on the region.

Zeyara is an annual event in the holy city of Karbala, which culminates in the event of Al Arba’een. It attracts visitors from across the globe and is one of the world’s largest public gatherings.

Once completed, the upgrade will allow users to enjoy improved indoor and outdoor coverage in both urban and rural areas as well as increased data throughput, leading to an overall superior customer experience.

Nokia’s project management and proven services expertise will be used to expand and modernize Zain Iraq’s 2G and 3G network, providing ubiquitous coverage and faster mobile broadband.

Additionally, the Nokia Mass Event Handler will be deployed to address the surge in data and voice consumption expected during Zeyara. The network modernization will allow visitors to remain continuously connected with their loved ones through superior voice and data connectivity during Al Arba’een and beyond.

Ali Al-Zahid, Chief Executive Officer of Zain Iraq, said:

Our top priority is to provide superior services for our subscribers. This network modernization and expansion is only the beginning of providing the best possible service quality and coverage with the most advanced technologies across the overall Karbala and Najaf and rest of sourthern region.

“We selected Nokia, our longstanding technology partner, for this important project, as we are confident that its advanced technologies will enable our network to provide such superior services. The current project will also enable a best-in-class mobile experience for visitors to Zeyara when we expect a high turnout this year.

Bernard Najm, head of the Middle East Market Unit at Nokia, said:

“Nokia fully understands Zain Iraq’s requirements and is committed to providing leading technologies to enable pioneering services for its subscribers. Nokia’s solutions cater to the unique connectivity requirements of mass events, and will help Zain Iraq address the expected surge in data and voice consumption during Zeyara.”

Overview of the solutions:

  • The high capacity and energy-efficient Nokia Flexi Multiradio 10 Base Station will be used to add the third carrier of 5 MHz on the 900 MHz band, to enhance capacity and increase coverage in suburban and rural areas.
  • Nokia’s Mass Event Handler will ensure network performance is not adversely affected because of heavy traffic during Zeyara. Another feature of the software – HSUPA Interference Cancellation – handles data more efficiently, enabling end users to upload pictures without any network glitch.
  • Nokia FlexiZone will be deployed to enhance coverage and capacity of the existing 3G network in Karbala.
  • Nokia’s refarming service will refarm GSM 900 MHz frequency to expand the operator’s 3G network.
  • Nokia’s NetAct virtualized network management software will provide robust capabilities for troubleshooting, assurance, administration, software management and configuration.
  • Nokia’s Network Planning and Optimization (NPO), Network Implementation , and Care services will ensure smooth execution of the project and maximize the return on Zain’s technology investments.

(Source: Nokia)

Social and Economic Integration of Youth Key for a Better Future for Iraq

A new project will promote the social and economic inclusion of about 3,000 conflict-affected Iraqi youth by facilitating their engagement in youth-led community development activities, peacebuilding initiatives and micro-entrepreneurship projects. The Project is financed by a US$2.75 million Grant provided by the Japan social Development Fund (JSDF).

The project agreement was signed today by H.E. Mr. Abdul-Hussein Abtaan, Iraqi Minister of Youth and Sports and Ms. Yara Salem, World Bank Iraq Country Manager, in the presence of H.E. Mr. Ja Fumio Iwai, Japanese Ambassador to Iraq.

With one third of the Iraqi population between the ages of 15 and 24, Iraqi youth represent both an opportunity and a challenge for economic development. Youth can bring dynamism and innovation to the any economy, yet if not properly trained and integrated, they may also represent a drain on limited national resources.

“Investing in the youth is key to build a stable and more prosperous future for Iraq. This project will help promote the social and economic inclusion of youth in conflict-affected areas. It will provide them with the skills needed to find better job opportunities and contribute to the reconstruction of Iraq” said Abdul-Hussein Abtaan, Iraqi Minister of Youth and Sports during the signing ceremony.

The project is expected to be a powerful engine to promote a culture of tolerance and strengthen social cohesion. Educating youth on the values of peace has become a pressing need, namely considering the waves of violence and displacement witnessed by several areas of the country due to the conflict.

“The World Bank is very pleased to partner with Iraq in supporting youth and their active participation in the economy. This is at the heart of sustainable and inclusive development and in line with the World Bank support plan to Iraq for the coming period” said Ms. Salem, World Bank Iraq Country Manager.

The Project, which builds on the success of a similar initiative implemented in Southern Iraq (Basra, Missan, and Thiqar), aims to support at least 3,000 vulnerable youth in Baghdad, including 50 percent young women and 30 percent IDPs.

The project will be implemented by the Ministry of Youth and Sports, with the help of local non-governmental organizations and service providers to conduct activities under the soft skills training, youth-led community development subprojects and business development trainings.

(Source: United Nations)

Electricity: {20 – 24} hour rate of energy processing of citizens


BAGHDAD / The Ministry of Electricity revealed the increase in the production of processed energy for citizens in Baghdad and the provinces to 15700 MW, stressing that the processing hours ranging from 20 to 24 hours a day throughout the country.

The ministry’s spokesman, Musab al-Mudar, told Al-Sabah: "The energy available in the country is around 15,700 megawatts. The local production capacity is 14,500 and imported from Iran up to 1200 MW."

The processing hours are currently stable in Baghdad and the provinces, Daily, there are provinces equipped around the clock as Basra.

He added that the ministry has prepared a plan to introduce a number of stations and generating units for the program of rehabilitation and periodic maintenance because of low loads and moderate temperatures, explaining that the rehabilitation and maintenance program begins at the end of this month in preparation for the summer of 2018.


This article was originally published by Niqash. Any opinions expressed are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.

To fight climate change in Basra, where summer temperatures now regularly rise to over 50 degrees Centigrade, locals plan to plant 16 million trees. The volunteers are on course for 1 million in 2017.

In the southern Iraqi city of Basra, locals are taking matters into their own hands to fight climate change. “In recent years temperatures in Basra have exceeded 50 degrees Centigrade,” explains Alaa Hashim al-Badran, head of the union of agricultural engineers in Basra. “And that is dangerous.”

The ramifications of ongoing climate change mean that the city and its inhabitants may face even higher temperatures in the future. To try and ameliorate the impact, locals have started planting trees. They intend to have planted a million of them shortly, and 16 million in the next few years.

Al-Badran says the idea for a tree-planting campaign was first suggested in the middle of the year and has since progressed rapidly. There are a hundred volunteers and over 15,000 supporters online, he notes, and in the near future, there should be even more people involved.

Citing the example of successful tree planting in Gulf Arab countries, al-Badran and his colleagues believe this may be one of the only ways to prevent Basra from deadly over-heating.



“Over the next few years we plan to plant 16 million trees here,” he told NIQASH. “The first phase starts in September and goes until mid-November. Then we will start again in mid-February and carry on until mid-April next year. The first objective is to plant 1 million trees.”

Iraqi oil: the completion of important steps to implement the agreement to export gas to Kuwait

Iraqi oil minister Jabbar Ali Hussein al-Allaibi said on Friday that the joint technical committee between Iraq and Kuwait has taken advanced and important steps to expedite the implementation of the agreement to export Iraqi crude gas surplus from the Rumaila field to Kuwait.

"The Joint Committee has completed all relevant procedures and is now finalizing the implementation of the Convention in the near future," Al-Allaibi said in a statement.

He added that "the agreement provides for the export of 50 million standard cubic feet per day of raw gas from Rumaila field in the province of Basra within the first phase up to 200 million standard cubic feet per day within the second phase of the Convention."

Al-Luaibi described the Kuwaiti side’s endorsement of "the great achievement achieved after decades, which puts things in perspective and contributes to the settlement of all outstanding issues between the two countries and works to strengthen bilateral relations between the two countries and expand investment opportunities and prospects for joint cooperation".


Conscious / House of Representatives ends reading the law of the Central Bank and vote on the formation of the Committee of Tribal Disputes / Report

The House of Representatives ended its 19th ordinary session held under the chairmanship of Dr. Salim Jubouri, the President of the Council and in the presence of 173 deputies on Saturday 16/9/2017, read one law and voted on the Committee of Tribal Disputes.

In a statement to the Information Department of the House of Representatives received by the (Iraqi News Agency Information / INA) that at the beginning of the session the Council voted on candidates for membership of the Committee on tribal conflicts in the province of Basra, which included MPs Jabbar Abadi, Amer Khuzaie and Amer Fayez and Abdul Salam al-Maliki and Safaa Al-Ghanim and Mazn Almazni Jamal Jamalawi And Tawfiq Al Kaabi.

The council postponed the vote on the candidates for membership of the investigative committee on the kidnapped to the meeting on Monday.

The Council voted on the recommendations that were submitted by the Committee of Civil Society Organizations, the Finance Committee and the Committee of Regions and Governorates that are not organized in the region and the Services and Construction Committee after hosting the Governor of Baghdad and members of the Provincial Council,

which included follow-up with the Office of the Prime Minister and the Advisory Board on finding financial sources to complete the implementation of projects And to follow up the implementation of policies and strategies that concern the province, whether economic or financial or other and to report to the Integrity Commission to hold accountable for the waste of public money and damage occurred in the province.

Then Ahmed Taha read out a statement on behalf of the deputies of the provinces of Dhi Qar and Basra denounced the terrorist crime that targeted innocent civilians in the city of Nasiriyah, pointing out that the crime comes in the context of the defeat of terrorists by the brave security forces, declaring solidarity with the families of the victims of the tragic Dhi Qar, The establishment of a funeral board in the House of Representatives.

The statement called on the Presidency of the Republic to speed up the signing of decrees to implement the death sentences against the depositors in the prisons of Dhi Qar province and to follow up with the competent authorities to track the criminals and those who helped them and the rows and the unity to meet the challenges as well as work on the development of external roads

and the provision of security forces to protect them and take the necessary administrative procedures and The competent committees to follow up the procedures of entitlements of the families of the martyrs, the wounded and the affected, calling for the return of their sons from the forces involved in the liberation to protect the roads.

MP Mona Gharabi followed a statement condemning the treacherous terrorist incident in the province of Dhi Qar, pointing out the importance of taking quick and urgent measures to uncover the circumstances of the incident, calling for future plans to ward off risks from safe areas, protect civilians and provide the province with advanced equipment.

The deputies read Al-Fatihah, a tribute to the souls of martyrs of terrorist action in the province of Dhi Qar.The Presidency decided to postpone the vote on the proposed law of the Media and Communications Commission submitted by the committees of culture, information, legal, financial, services and ages.

The Presidency postponed both the vote in principle on the proposed amendment to the Law of Elections of the House of Representatives No. (45) for the year 2013 submitted by the Legal Committee and vote in principle on the proposed amendment of the Personal Status Law No. 188 of 1959 submitted by the Legal, Religious.

For his part, praised the President of the Council the role of a committee of experts to select the members of the Board of Commissioners of the Electoral Commission for the efforts made during the election of members of the Electoral Commission Jubouri also thanked the heads of blocs and a number of deputies who participated in dialogue with the Kurdish blocs, praising their role in resolving differences and unify the situation within the sessions.

The deputy MP Abdul Rahim al-Shammari issued a statement on the suspension of salaries of employees of the province of Nineveh under the pretext of security checks, which increased the suffering of the families of the province, calling for the fairness of the staff who contributed to the return of life and official circles to work, demanding the government to pay their salaries immediately.

The Council concluded the reading of the report and discussion of the draft law of the second amendment to the law of the Central Bank of Iraq issued Order No. (56) for the year 2004 on the Coalition Provisional Authority (dissolved) and submitted by the financial and economic and investment.

In the interventions of deputies, MP Riad Gharib called for the cancellation of the CPA order and the submission of a new draft law, in addition to the need for the independence of the Central Bank and the status of reserves in Swiss banks to maintain it.

MP Hanan Al-Fatlawi called for reforming the mechanisms of the Central Bank’s work and for separating the overlap with the Ministry of Finance.

MP Abbas al-Bayati called for determining the years of service for legal experts and allowing the sale and circulation of gold coins.

MP Ammar al-To’maa asks about the extent of the guarantees put in place to protect the investment from loss.In its response to the interventions, the Committee stressed the importance of the proposals submitted, including the need for independence of the work of the Central Bank and the development of paragraphs encouraging investment, noting taking into account the proposals submitted for the draft law.

Al-Jubouri drew the vote on both the draft law of provincial and district elections and the proposal of the second amendment to the law of the Independent High Electoral Commission No. 11 of 2007 and the proposal to amend the law of the High Commission Independent Electoral Commission No. 11 of 2007 submitted by the Legal and Vote Committee Report Committee of Experts on the members of the Electoral Commission in the session on Monday,

stressing the ability of the House of Representatives to resolve the draft proposals and the laws of different, noting that the meeting on Monday will see the presentation of the absence of deputies and actions taken against M, according to the rules of procedure in addition to determining the timings for the dates of interrogations and oral questions.

It was then decided to adjourn the meeting until next Monday 18/9/2017.

http://al-iraqnews.com/news/reports/207673-%D9%88%D8%A7%D8%B9-%D9%85%D8%AC%D9%84%D8%B3-%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%86%D9%88%D8%A7%D8%A8-%D9%8A%D9%86%D9%87%D9%8A-%D9%82%D8%B1%D8%A7%D8%A1%D8%A9-%D9%82%D8%A7%D9%86%D9%88%D9%86-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%A8%D9%86%D9%83-%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%85%D8%B1%D9%83%D8%B2%D9%8A-%D9%88%D9%8A%D8%B5%D9%88%D8%AA-%D8%B9%D9%84%D9%89-%D8%AA%D8%B4%D9%83%D9%8A%D9%84-%D9%84%D8%AC%D9%86%D8%A9-%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%86%D8%B2%D8%A7%D8%B9%D8%A7%D8%AA-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%B9%D8%B4%D8%A7%D8%A6%D8%B1%D9%8A%D 8%A9-%D8%AA%D9%82%D8%B1%D9%8A%D8%B1.html

By John Lee.

Oil giant Shell is trying to sell its stake in the Majnoon oilfield (pictured) in southern Iraq, following a failure to reach agreement with Iraq’s Ministry of Oil.

A Shell spokesman told UAE-based newspaper The National:

“Following extensive discussions with the Ministry of Oil, the oil minister of Iraq formally endorsed a recent Shell proposal to pursue an amicable and mutually acceptable release of the Shell interest in Majnoon, with the timeline to be agreed in due course.”

Reuters quotes an oil official as confirming that the Ministry failed to reach an agreement with Shell over its Majnoon operations, including production plans and investments budgets. “We think it’s for the interest of all parties that Shell should withdraw,” he added.

A Shell spokesman told Reuters:

“In May 2017, the ministry of oil in Iraq applied the performance penalty and remuneration factor on the Shell operated venture, the Majnoon oil field, which had a significant impact on its commerciality.”

The company holds a 45-percent share in the project, with Malaysia’s Petronas holding 30 percent, and the Iraqi state-owned Maysan Oil Company having 25 percent.

Output from the field, which commenced production in 2014, is currently estimated at around 235,000 barrels per day (bpd), with a 400,000 bpd target by 2020.

Shell is also seeking to selling its stake in the ExxonMobil-operated West Qurna 1 oil field.

In addition to its oil interests in Iraq, Shell is a key player in the Basra Gas Company (BGC), a joint venture between the Iraq’s South Gas Company (SGC) (51%), Shell (44%) and Japan’s Mitsubishi (5%), which processes gas from the Rumaila, West Qurna and Zubair fields, which would otherwise be flared.

The National also quotes a Shell spokesman as saying that the company remains committed to this, and to its petrochemical project in Iraq:

“By leaving Majnoon, Shell will be in a stronger position to focus its efforts on the development and growth of the Basrah Gas Company and the Nebras Petrochemicals Project.

(Sources: Reuters, The National)

By Ashley Goodall.

Is the UK overlooking a key USP for British International businesses?

Education and training footprint of British companies around the world has a significant and excellent impact on communities and economies and is often taken for granted.

As the UK ramps up its trade rhetoric and a ‘Global Britain’ emerges, one of the key benefits that British companies bring is being overlooked: Education and training…

The penny dropped for me as I attended a meeting of the Iraq Britain Business Council (IBBC) members to find that one after the other, each company was committed to the concept of a learning organisation that are locally integrated. Not only are British companies employing as many local people as possible, but also training them to deliver increasingly complex managerial and technical roles.

Oil and gas companies, Shell and BP in particular, deliver an extraordinary amount of training in Iraq alone. The effect on the local communities and national economies is a massive injection of know-how and a source of social stability, development, prosperity and economic progress, let alone the transformative power training confers on individuals, families and communities.

Not only are our companies a source of prosperity, but when partnered with UK Universities offer a double whammy for the delivery of global standards and expertise that  few countries can match in country and via external courses, such as delivered by Oxford Brooks and Northampton Universities.

Emerging economies appreciate this expertise, as it raises business operations to global standards and enables them to compete with the best, to encourage inward investment and generate employment opportunities in their regions.

Oil and Power companies in particular make a big social impact on their suppliers. Osama Kadhum Managing Director of Ratba’ contracting in Iraq says his staff received 3885 hours of training in Majnoon Oilfield from Shell alone, ensuring the highest technical and supervisory standards are applied.

GE power likewise employ over 90% of local staff, often sent for technical training in USA or x for 6-12 month stretches supporting local recruitment , diversity of employees, and women for increasingly leadership and supervisory roles. Shell in Iraq train over 7,900 local staff in Basra for whom they are delivering over 200,000 training days per year. BP and its Partners are developing the Rumaila field which is supported by a 93% Iraqi workforce.

Around 2,400,000 training hours have been delivered to staff in a variety of technical disciplines, core skills, leadership and safety.  And these figures do not include community initiatives such as an extensive community vocational training programme that has been running for 3 years, or 400 women from a remote community that have been trained in the Rumaila funded Qarmat Ali Women’s Training Centre.

In Baghdad Serco have set up an ATC Academy for Air traffic Controllers. Multiply this scale of training globally in just Iraq and you begin to see the scale and quality of training that British companies deliver among International, Emerging and Frontier markets.

More widely Rolls- Royce has committed an ambitious plan to reach 6 million people worldwide through their STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Maths) education programmes between 2014- 2020. This bold target will encourage a more creative and engaging outreach through the company’s supply chain, through the wider STEM sector and to inspire society to attract talented young people from around the world to the world of STEM.

Businesses are often castigated by the media, but the reality is that they are usually a force for good, prosperity and ultimately stronger communities. So let’s celebrate the important impact British companies’ commitment to education and training brings to millions of people and their ability to change the world.

Ashley Goodall is a martketing consultant to Iraq Britain Business Council (IBBC).