Iraq’s energy sector brings jobs and prosperity

The adoption of the Integrated National Energy Strategy last year brought a transformation and investment of more than $600 billion in Iraq’s energy sector over the next sixteen years. The plan not only focuses on pumping oil out of Iraq’s oil fields, but also calls for cooperation amongst numerous ministries, including finance, oil, planning and environment.

The Iraq Trust Fund – a new national energy strategy – developed with support from the World Bank is a result of closely coordinated efforts between key Iraqi ministries: oil, electricity, finance, planning, water, environment, and industry and minerals. The across the boards approach means that even though the strategy itself was finished only last year, implementation is now underway.

"The national energy strategy goes beyond Iraq's short term focus of maximizing oil export and revenues,” said Thamir Ghadban, head of the Iraqi Prime Minister's Advisory Commission. "Oil production is up and the lights are coming back on.”

The strategy calls for the investment in oil infrastructure, the development of petroleum-related industries, as well as the use of natural gas flare off to expand the capacity of the electrical grid. Through the development of related industries the Iraqi government hopes to encourage non-petroleum related sector growth. The government hopes to see a rise by 2020 in economic activity outside of the petroleum sector.

The World Bank says they remain committed to supporting Iraq in laying the foundations for sustainable and inclusive growth.

For the original May 6, 2014 piece from The World Bank referenced in this summary, click here.