Iraq works to strengthen Internet access

The Iraqi Ministry of Communications is working to improve the quality of Internet service and to lower fees across the country.

The ministry announced late February that it intends to build a database of all entities providing Internet service in Iraq in order to regulate the work of these groups, measure their efficiency and the quality of their services, and to monitor their rates, said the deputy general director of the ministry's foreign relations and media Samir Ali al-Hassoun.

By adopting a series of regulations and measures, the ministry is trying to bind all such companies into committing to provide the best quality of service to Internet users at reasonable rates, al-Hassoun said.

Starting last November, the ministry lowered monthly fees for Internet service to a third of their original price as well as instructed major companies to lower the fees they charge intermediary companies, to reflect on individuals, he said.

The new plan also aims to increase "the number of private sector companies working in the field of Internet service and using the government fibre-optic network", he said. This step is intended to break service monopolies and strengthen competition among Internet companies, al-Hassoun said, and it comes amid ministry efforts to boost the state of communications in the country.

Recently, the ministry inaugurated an underwater sea cable project linking Iraq to the outside world through the Arab Gulf, he said.

For the original March 13, 2014 piece from, a service of Al-Shorfa referenced in this summary, click here.