Aug 31 2012
By Ali Shattab
Azzaman, August 31, 2012
Iraqis have a lot of money and they need more shopping malls to spend it, according to the head of Investment Commission in Baghdad, Shakir al-Zameli.
Zameli said his commission has granted licenses for the construction of 46 new shopping malls in Baghdad by foreign firms and that “there is need for many more.”
He said the commission was studying fresh offers by foreign firms for the construction of new malls.
“This number of malls is not enough to meet the rise in the purchasing power of Iraqi citizens,” he claimed.
Some foreign firms are half-way through their projects and others are almost ready to open for business, Zameli said.
He did not say how much the malls will cost and did not reveal the terms of the contracts his commission had signed with the foreign firms constructing them.
Iraq’s purchasing power and consumption relies on the country’s army of civil servants whose earnings have seen substantial hikes due to increases in oil royalties which last year were estimated at more than $100 billion.
The government is the largest employer in Iraq.
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