UNDP and Germany support the Reform Process on the Conduct of Criminal Investigations in Iraq

On 7 November 2018 the German Ambassador to Iraq, Dr Cyrill Nunn received in the German Embassy UNDP-Iraq Country Office representatives and Iraqi representatives of the Higher Judicial Council, the Ministry of the Interior and the Office of the National Security Advisor to discuss the state of reform of criminal investigations in Iraq.

The Iraqi representatives had returned from a study trip to Berlin to observe on site and discuss with German practitioners how criminal investigations are conducted in Germany.

The Iraqi officials are members of the Criminal Justice Working Group who have been working for over a year on reviewing how criminal investigations are conducted by the police in Iraq. To streamline the conduct of criminal investigations and to make them more effective and reliable, the Iraqi working group produced a draft on Standard Operating Procedures for Criminal Investigations.

In Berlin the Iraqi delegation held discussions with German criminal justice experts of the Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection, police agents of the Federal Investigation Agency, prosecutors of the Berlin Prosecutor General’s Office, the station commander of a Berlin district police station, senior Berlin state police detectives and administrators of the detention on remand facility in Berlin-Moabit.

Ambassador Dr Cyrill Nunn expressed his hope that the visit to Berlin to review German investigation procedures have provided the Iraqi criminal justice working group “with ideas and the right stimulus to identify appropriate mechanisms to advance the criminal investigative process in Iraq.”

Acting UNDP-Iraq Country Director Gerardo Noto added that “UNDP will continue facilitating the working group meetings for the finalization of the procedural guidelines so that they could be adopted by the Government of Iraq, as well as supporting their implementation to strengthen the criminal justice system in Iraq.”

The development and implementation of unified Standard Operating Procedures for Criminal Investigations is an identified key priority within the Government of Iraq’s ongoing Security Sector Reform Programme under the system priority Criminal Justice and Law Enforcement that is supported by UNDP and International Partners.

(Source: UNDP)

By John Lee.

Both Germany’s Siemens and US-based GE have signed deals with the Iraqi government on Sunday to provide major additional power generating capacity to Iraq.

Following a hotly-contested competition, the two rivals are to share the work, with GE supplying 14 Gigawatts (GW), and Siemens 11 GW.

(Sources: GE, Siemens)

Siemens in landmark MoU to repower Iraq, support economic prosperity

Siemens and the Ministry of Electricity of the Republic of Iraq have entered a milestone agreement to seek the implementation of the company’s roadmap for repowering Iraq. Signed by Qasim Al-Fahdawi, Minister of Electricity, and Joe Kaeser, President and CEO of Siemens AG, the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) will examine a series of short, medium and long-term plans to meet the reconstruction goals of Iraq and support the country’s economic development.

“Our commitment to the Iraqi people stands strong. We promised them to achieve affordable and reliable power supply, help with anti-corruption, build schools and hospitals and create thousands of jobs. Education, training and developing local skills and talent are key elements for us to contribute to building the New Iraq. Today’s agreement on the Siemens roadmap is a significant step towards fulfilling that promise,” said Joe Kaeser. “We are ready to start and look forward to working closely with the Iraqi government to immediately produce noticeable improvements for the Iraqi people.”

In September, Siemens announced the donation of a smart health clinic that would be powered by solar energy and equipped with Siemens medical devices. The clinic would have the capacity to treat up to 10,000 patients per year. This was in addition to pledging to fund the first modular “School of the Future” in Iraq, provide a USD 60 million software grant for universities in the country, and train more than 1,000 Iraqis in vocational education.

Under the “Roadmap for the Electrification of the New Iraq”, Siemens is ready to add 11 gigawatts (GW) of power generation capacity over four years to ensure 23 million Iraqis across the country have reliable and sustainable electricity 24/7. This would boost current generation capacity by almost 50 percent. The economic viability of the plan is secured by billions of US dollars in potential fuel savings and revenue generation for the electricity sector, supporting the development of the future Iraq. The company also envisions the creation of tens of thousands of jobs over the course of the projects. The roadmap emphasizes people at its core – and is the result of a 12-month study to develop a comprehensive and tailored redevelopment plan. It focuses on energy, education, compliance and financing, aiming to advance sustainable economic development, national security and quality of life for the people of Iraq.

Siemens’ Iraq Roadmap outlines eight objectives to benefit the people of Iraq, the country’s national security and its economic development. These include reducing energy losses, introducing smart grids, strengthening the transmission grid, modernizing existing power plants, adding new generation capacities in deprived areas, connecting Iraq to the Arab Gulf region, putting Iraq’s national resources to work, and investing in its people.

Modernizing the country’s energy infrastructure is intended to be completed in stages, from immediate improvement for up to 300,000 people, which can be operational within three months, to medium and long-term projects that require between 10 and 24 months’ completion time and beyond. The company will also assist Iraq’s government in securing appropriate finance packages provided by international commercial banks, Export Credit Agencies and supported by the German Government.

The roadmap lays out plans to use Iraq’s valuable natural resources more efficiently by utilizing flare gas capture and treatment technologies to deliver a domestic source of fuel to Iraq’s power generation sector, as well as create a long-term source of revenue for the government to finance power generation, transmission, and distribution projects.

As part of its commitment to driving sustainable growth, Siemens intends to support social development in Iraq with a series of training and education programs. This includes technical and vocational training as well as transparency and anti-corruption education, in order to build a pool of highly skilled, local talent with a culture of compliance. Under the patronage of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), Siemens aims to provide vocational training, starting with 1,000 young Iraqis.

Siemens initially presented the Roadmap to the Government of Iraq during the Iraq Reconstruction Conference in Kuwait, in February 2018. At the same time, the company signed a declaration of intent with BMZ with both parties agreeing to jointly contribute to the reconstruction and development of Iraq in areas including technical and vocational training, as well as transparency and anti-corruption.

(Source: Siemens)

By John Lee.

Germany’s Siemens may have to share a $15-billion contract to supply power-generation equipment to Iraq with US rival General Electric (GE).

The Financial Times reports that although it appeared that Siemens would win the deal, the Trump administration successfully intervened on behalf of GE.

Last month German business newspaper Handelsblatt reported that Chancellor Angela Merkel had personally intervened with Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to persuade the Iraqi Government to award the contract to Siemens.

(Source: Financial Times)

The Federal Republic of Germany, UNDP’s Iraq Crisis Response and Resilience Programme (ICRRP), along with the administrative authorities of Halabja and Sulaimaniyah Governorates and Garmiyan and Raparin Administrations today initiated 12 projects to improve essential services for an estimated 680,000 people.

The projects target critical needs in the electricity, water, roads, and sewerage sectors and provide jobs for 819 people – including host community members, Syrian refugees and IDPs.

At the ceremony to launch the projects, the Deputy Governor of Sulaimaniyah, H.E Mr. Ahmed Ali Ahmed, said:

“Today we are signing agreements with UNDP to launch infrastructure projects with a total budget of close to US $2.5 million across Sulaimaniyah Governorate and Garmiyan and Raparin Administrations. This generous support from the Federal Republic of Germany, and collaboration with UNDP, comes as the KR-I continues to suffer from a severe economic crisis that began in 2013.

“Many challenges and increased pressure due to the large number of IDPs and refugees who are settling in the Kurdistan Region will be addressed through these fundamental basic-services projects, including improved electricity, water, roads, and sewerage systems.”

The Deputy Governor of Halabja, H.E Mr. Kawa  Ali Kareem, added:

“On behalf of the inhabitants of Halabja Governorate, including the IDPs, refugees and host communities, the office of Governor of Halabja expresses sincere gratitude and appreciation to the Federal Republic of Germany and UNDP’s Iraq Crisis Response and Resilience Programme (ICRRP) for supporting implementation of four important basic services projects that will improve internal roads and sewerage systems.

“Implementation of these infrastructure projects will benefit close to 107,000 community members and create over 255 temporary job opportunities in Halabja alone.”

The construction of effective wastewater and sewerage networks across Sulaimaniyah City, Qaladiza, Hajiawa and Khurmal Sub-Districts, and Hawari-New Neighbourhood in Kifri City, will reduce environmental pollution and the spread of diseases amongst vulnerable populations during periods of high rainfall. In Sulaimaniyah City, the construction of an electricity distribution network will provide regular electricity supply to hospitals, schools, and water supply stations – benefitting the whole community.

In 2018, with continuous funding from the Federal Republic of Germany, ICRRP and governorate authorities in the Kurdistan Region or Iraq have supported 28 projects benefiting over 1,240,121 host community members, IDPs and refugees and providing livelihood opportunities for 1,273 individuals.

UNDP’s Iraq Crisis Response and Resilience Programme (ICRRP) promotes the recovery and resilience of communities vulnerable to multi-dimensional shocks associated with large-scale returns and protracted displacement of Iraqis and Syrian refugees.  This is achieved through a medium-term, programming integrating crisis management capacity building, rehabilitating basic service infrastructure, livelihood recovery and social cohesion.

(Source: UNDP)

By John Lee.

The state-owned Trade Bank of Iraq (TBI) is reported to be in talks to buy a Gulf bank with branches in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Qatar.

Chairman Faisal al-Haimus told Reuters that talks are underway and the purchase is expected to be completed in six to eight months. The name of the bank was not disclosed.

According to the report, Haimus was in Abu Dhabi to sign a 100 million euros ($115.5 million) loan agreement with Germany’s Commerzbank to enable it to support small and medium sized projects in Iraq.

More here.

(Source: Reuters)

The Iraqi Ministry of Interior has commissioned German-based Veridos to build and operate factory for the production of Iraqi security documents.

According to a statement from the company, it will provide Iraq with secure national ID cards and a reliable, consistent national register.

The entire production process of the documents will be in Iraqi hands. Equipped with state-of-the-art production technology and located close to Baghdad International Airport, the plant’s equipment will make it possible to implement all the latest security features in identity documents.

In the first phase, the complete production chain for passports was installed. The first production equipment for card production will soon be finished as well. After this most important and initial step, the value chain will be increased by adding production capabilities for other official documents, such as employee batches or drivers’ licenses.

The issuing of the new eID card was the initial step for establishing a reliable national register for the first time. Now the Ministry of Interior and Veridos are partnering to construct a new production site for the supply of Iraqi security documents: state-of-the-art eID cards and ePassports.

The country is now able to produce its own electronic ID cards and passports on site. Veridos will continue to provide related services and maintenance. All the required technical know-how is being transferred to local employees, creating more than 100 jobs for highly skilled workers from Iraq.

Interior Minister Qassim al Arraji and German Ambassador Dr. Cyrill Nunn took part in the ceremony that officially kicked off the next stage – the on-site production of ICAO* compliant passports in a highly secured compound of the new plant. For the Republic of Iraq, this new production site represents a significant milestone.

Qassim Al-Arraji, Interior Minister of the Republic of Iraq, said:

“The first security document manufacturing site with high-tech equipment is now to be built in our country, creating more than 100 jobs for highly skilled workers in and around the factory. We have already successfully implemented a state-of the-art electronic ID system with Veridos, including a pioneering national register. We are pleased to continue this productive partnership.”

Veridos is a joint venture between Giesecke & Devrient GmbH, of Munich, and Bundesdruckerei GmbH, Berlin

(Source: Veridos)

By John Lee.

German business newspaper Handelsblatt reports that Chancellor Angela Merkel has personally intervened with Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to persuade the Iraq Government to sign a major contract with Siemens to upgrade the country’s electricity infrastructure.

It is understood that the State Secretary for Economic Affairs, Thomas Bareiß, accompanied Siemens Chief Executive Joe Kaeser (pictured) on a visit to Baghdad on Sunday in the hope of agreeing a multi-billion euro deal.

The German export credit guarantee company Hermes would be expected to underwrite any contract.

US-based General Electric (GE) is believed to be also in the running.

(Source: Handelsblatt)

In line with Iraq’s goal to improve the efficiency and availability of the country’s power plants, Siemens will provide inspection and upgrade services for two power generation units at Al-Sadder Power Plant.

Located in Baghdad, the 600-megawatts (MW) facility is one of the country’s major power plants that currently supplies approximately 600,000 homes with power. The works will be conducted as part of a new contract between Siemens’ Power Generation Services Division and the Ministry of Electricity.

Under the agreement, Siemens will overhaul two SGT5-2000E gas turbines and perform its advanced 3-dimensional turbine blades and vanes (Si3D) upgrade. The Si3D upgrade is designed to improve power output and thermal efficiency through a combination of 3D aerodynamic design, cooling improvements, and advanced materials. These will help the power assets at Al-Sadder to generate enough power to supply an additional 100,000 homes with electricity.

“Siemens has been a development partner to Iraq for over 80 years. We are committed to supporting the country to strengthen its power infrastructure by offering innovative services that can be instrumental in upgrading existing facilities,” said Gianluigi Di Giovanni, Senior Executive Vice President of Siemens Power Generation Services in the Middle East and North Africa. “The latest upgrade and maintenance services at Al-Sadder, provided in collaboration with the Ministry of Electricity, will bring additional power to households, public buildings and industries.”

In addition to increasing the power output, the upgrade project will improve the efficiency of the turbines by up to 2 percent, resulting in significant fuel savings and reduced CO2 emissions. The agreement also includes the plant’s SPPA-T3000 control system, the supply of anti-virus solutions as well as the support from Siemens’ Remote Expert Center, which is a 24/7 online maintenance support service, enabling more efficient fault diagnosis and troubleshooting.

The latest project at Al-Sadder plant follows a series of service agreements with Iraq’s Ministry of Electricity to carry out critical service and maintenance works at six power plants throughout the country. Once completed, the upgraded units will add 1,350 MW to the national grid, enough to supply approximately 20 million Iraqis with reliable electricity.

(Source: Siemens)

In line with Iraq’s goal to improve the efficiency and availability of the country’s power plants, Siemens will provide inspection and upgrade services for two power generation units at Al-Sadder Power Plant.

Located in Baghdad, the 600-megawatts (MW) facility is one of the country’s major power plants that currently supplies approximately 600,000 homes with power. The works will be conducted as part of a new contract between Siemens’ Power Generation Services Division and the Ministry of Electricity.

Under the agreement, Siemens will overhaul two SGT5-2000E gas turbines and perform its advanced 3-dimensional turbine blades and vanes (Si3D) upgrade. The Si3D upgrade is designed to improve power output and thermal efficiency through a combination of 3D aerodynamic design, cooling improvements, and advanced materials. These will help the power assets at Al-Sadder to generate enough power to supply an additional 100,000 homes with electricity.

“Siemens has been a development partner to Iraq for over 80 years. We are committed to supporting the country to strengthen its power infrastructure by offering innovative services that can be instrumental in upgrading existing facilities,” said Gianluigi Di Giovanni, Senior Executive Vice President of Siemens Power Generation Services in the Middle East and North Africa. “The latest upgrade and maintenance services at Al-Sadder, provided in collaboration with the Ministry of Electricity, will bring additional power to households, public buildings and industries.”

In addition to increasing the power output, the upgrade project will improve the efficiency of the turbines by up to 2 percent, resulting in significant fuel savings and reduced CO2 emissions. The agreement also includes the plant’s SPPA-T3000 control system, the supply of anti-virus solutions as well as the support from Siemens’ Remote Expert Center, which is a 24/7 online maintenance support service, enabling more efficient fault diagnosis and troubleshooting.

The latest project at Al-Sadder plant follows a series of service agreements with Iraq’s Ministry of Electricity to carry out critical service and maintenance works at six power plants throughout the country. Once completed, the upgraded units will add 1,350 MW to the national grid, enough to supply approximately 20 million Iraqis with reliable electricity.

(Source: Siemens)