Health, sport, nature: Key sites in Mosul reopen after damage by ISIL

Al Rabee Primary Healthcare Center, the Al Muthana Sport and Youth Center and the East Mosul Nursery Plantation were officially reopened today by the Government of Ninewa, following their rehabilitation by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

“While a lot of work remains to be done in Mosul, the opening of these three projects shows the strength and resilience of the city – one that’s well on its way to recovery after experiencing immense hardship under ISIL’s control,” says UNDP’s Resident Representative in Iraq, Zena Ali Ahmad.

“Al Rabee is one of 24 healthcare centers and hospitals rehabilitated by UNDP in Mosul and provides critical healthcare services to communities across the city,” she says.

“The Al Muthana Sport and Youth Center is an opportunity to reengage our youth. Sport and organized youth actives go a long way in keeping young people feeling healthy, recognized and valued, so this facility is extremely important.

“And plants produced by the Nursery will not only beautify the city, but they also hold great symbolism – representing new life and restored hope for the people of Mosul.”

Rehabilitation of Al Rabee Primary Healthcare Center was funded by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and furniture for the Center was provided by a financial contribution from Poland. Rehabilitation of both the Sport Center and Nursery Plantation was supported by The Netherlands.

“The completion of these sites wouldn’t have been possible without the generous contribution of our donors. We’re extremely grateful to the UAE, Poland and The Netherlands for their continued support to stabilizing Iraq,” adds Ms Ali Ahmad.

Approximately 827 stabilization projects have been completed or are underway by UNDP in Mosul, including restoring water and electricity networks, rebuilding educational institutions and healthcare facilities, providing employment for locals to clear rubble from streets, and rehabilitating 15,000 houses.

About the projects

Al Muthana Sport and Youth Center is a public sporting facility and a hub for organized youth activities. At 6700m2, it includes multi-purpose courts for basketball, volleyball, tennis and handball. Under ISIL’s occupation it was used as the militant group’s primary training base.

East Mosul Nursery Plantation is the main source of plant supply to government departments. The area covers 56,000m2 and consists of greenhouses, net shades, open spaces and admin buildings. Prior to ISIL’s occupation, the nursey would produce 250,000-300,000 plants per year.

Al Rabee Primary Healthcare Center is one of the largest in West Mosul. Before ISIL’s occupation, the Center served some 500 patients per day in a catchment area of about 39,000 people. Today it receives about 100 patients per day, however this number is expected to increase as more people return home.

(Source: UNDP)

From Al Jazeera. Any opinions expressed are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.

Slow progress is being made to rebuild the ruined city of Mosul in northern Iraq.

It is two years since the Iraqi army, with a United States-led coalition and Iran-backed Shia militias, drove ISIL fighters from the capital of their self-declared caliphate.

Reconstruction efforts are not being helped by the sanctions imposed by the US on Iraq’s ally Iran.

UN agencies estimate it may take tens of millions of dollars and 10 years just to remove mines and explosives.

Al Jazeera‘s Osama Bin Javaid reports:

By Rasha Mahmoud for Al-Monitor. Any opinions expressed are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.

Looking to make inroads into reconstruction projects in Libya and Iraq, Cairo kicked off its annual Builders of Egypt Forum, one of the country’s biggest events in the construction industry.

Egyptian Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly addressed the audience at the June 16 conference, which drew government officials, builders and bank officials to discuss opportunities available for the Egyptian construction companies abroad.

Click here to read the full story.

By John Lee.

The Cabinet held its regular meeting in Baghdad on Tuesday under the chairmanship of Prime Minister, Adil Abd Al-Mahdi.

The Cabinet approved a series of recommendations from the Ministerial Economic Council to support the growth of Iraq’s cement industry and to ensure that production capacity continues to meet domestic demand. No details of the recommendations have been announced.

It also approved a loan agreement between the Republic of Iraq and the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) for what it described as an “electricity services reconstruction and enhancement project“.

According to a governmengt statement, it also approved a recommendation from the housing consultative group that investors in housing projects need to complete a percentage of the planned building work before they are allowed to own the land.

(Source: Government of Iraq)

From Al Jazeera. Any opinions expressed are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.

Iraq is looking to strengthen its economy after decades of war, sanctions, sectarian division and the rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or ISIS).

It has achieved some progress in recent years thanks to its oil industry; Iraq is the second-largest producer in the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and oil provides roughly 85 percent of the government’s revenue.

As the country enters a period of relative calm, Iraq’s oil minister, Thamer Ghadhban, says the government is working to expand its oil industries and improve infrastructure, which includes building more refineries and investing in southern gas fields and export routes.

By John Lee.

President Barham Salih has highlighted the need to address the obstacles impeding the work of the private sector in Iraq.

Addressing a delegation from the Iraqi Federation of Chambers of Commerce at his Office in Baghdad, the President stressed the importance of enhancing the role of the private sector in reconstruction.

Mr. Abdul Razzaq al-Zuhairi, the Head of the Federation, said he valued the President’s support for the private sector.

(Source: Office of the Iraqi President)

By John Lee.

Iraqi Foreign Minister Mr. Mohamad A. Alhakim received Turkish Foreign Minister Mr. Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu at the Ministry’s headquarters in Baghdad; they reviewed bilateral relations, areas of joint cooperation between Baghdad and Ankara, as well as regional issues and mutual interest.

Minister Alhakim called for Turkish companies to contribute to the reconstruction of liberated areas, focussing on infrastructure, to ensure the return of displaced families to their homes.

He also stressed the need to activate a loan agreed with Turkey at the Iraq Reconstruction Conference last year in Kuwait.

(Source: MOFA)

By John Lee.

Approximately $64 million has reportedly been embezzled in Mosul by officials said to be close to the recently-sacked governor, Nawfel Akoub, who is currently on the run following a warrant for his arrest in relation to the Mosul ferry disaster.

AFP quotes Iraq’s Integrity Commission as saying that officials “close to Akoub” had stolen the funds, but did not accuse him personally.

Some $40 million of the money had been set aside to rebuild Mosul (pictured) following the drawn-out battle to oust the Daesh terrorist group.

(Source: AFP)

Sponsored by the Embassy of the Republic of Iraq in Rome, and in coordination with the Federation of Italian Industries, the Iraqi Conference on Investment and Reconstruction was held at the end of March to discuss investment opportunities and the contribution of Italian companies in the reconstruction of Iraq.

Representatives of more than 200 Italian companies witnessed the participation of the National Investment Commission (NIC), Undersecretary of the Ministry of Commerce, Directors-general, officials of oil and transport ministries, Baghdad investment, and representatives of the Federation of Chambers of Commerce from the Iraqi side and from the Italian side by Italian Undersecretary of State for Development and Economy, the Italian Ambassador in Baghdad.

The conference also witnessed the holding of meetings between the representatives of the Iraqi authorities and Italian companies to discuss investment opportunities in the fields of energy, oil, agriculture and infrastructure.

(Source: Ministry of Foreign Affairs)

The United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) has welcomed an additional contribution of USD 5.4 million from the Government of Japan to support reconstruction and peacebuilding in Iraq through the rehabilitation of war-damaged houses and construction of low-cost housing units in key liberated cities.

More than one year from the declaration of the military victory over so-called ISIL in 2017, more than 1.7 million people are still displaced in Iraq. The rehabilitation of severely damaged structures and rebuilding of fully destroyed houses are extremely costly and require robust engineering expertise. IDPs with their severely damaged or fully destroyed homes are still in dire need of support.

Through the additional funding UN-Habitat will be able to continue its community-based interventions and the rehabilitation of “severely damaged” houses and the construction of low-cost housing units to accommodate vulnerable returnees whose houses are “destroyed.”

Returnees and members of affected communities will be trained on skills required for the works and recruited under the project to support rebuilding their livelihoods. Approximately 2,500 returnees are expected to benefit from this project, and priorities will be given to vulnerable households including female-headed households, those with elderly, infants and children under age 6, or physically impaired.

His Excellency Mr. Naofumi Hashimoto, Ambassador of Japan to the Republic of Iraq said:

“Japan has recently decided a new assistance package for Iraq amounting to US$ 63 million, including this project as a contribution to the housing sector. With this package, the total amount of Japan’s assistance to the people affected by the crisis reaches US$ 500 million.”

UN-Habitat is grateful to the people and the Government of Japan for their continuous generous support which allows integration of the New Urban Agenda and physical interventions for post-conflict reconstruction and peacebuilding.

The development of sites for low-cost housing units designed to accommodate vulnerable displaced people who lost their homes is one of the pillars of the “Housing Reconstruction Strategy” recently developed by the Government of Iraq and UN-Habitat to enhance and accelerate housing reconstruction and development in conflict-affected areas.

With a contribution of approximately $50 million since 2015, the Government of Japan has been a vital partner to UN-Habitat’s Iraq Programme.

(Source: UN)