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Lithuanians interested in investing in Kurdistan Region

By Rebin Hasan
Tuesday, 21 February 2012


Lithuanians are interested in doing business and investments in Kurdistan Region, Lithuania’s Deputy Minister for Economy told a Kurdish-Lithuanian economic forum on Tuesday.

The form kicked off today where dozens of Kurdish as well as Lithuanian businessmen, tradesmen and economic officials from both side tackled ways to deepen economic relations between the semi-autonomous Kurdish region of Iraq and Lithuanian in addition to encouraging the Lithuanians to come to Kurdistan for investment.

Lapinskas Daumantas , Deputy Lithuanian Economy Minister, told the conference that “we are here to build relations between Kurdistan and Lithuania and to get to know the investment opportunities in this region.”

Lithuanians have experience in the areas of agriculture, health, food, banking as well as reconstruction, the Lithuania officials told the forum.

“I have 19 businessmen and representatives of the giant Lithuanian companies who are wiling to work here.” Lapinskas said.

Currently, hundreds of foreign companies are working the in Kurdish region of Iraq, but no Lithuanian companies have been registered for business in Kurdistan according to authorities. Sinan Chalabi, Kurdistan Regional Government’s Minister of Trade said “the door is open to all foreign companies to come and work in Kurdistan.”

Kurdistan Region has been the hot spot for investment in Iraq since 2003 and is regarded as one of the Middle East's best growth prospects in 2012. According to statistics released by the Investment Board, the region has attracted some $16.2 billion (19 trillion IQD) in foreign investment over the past five years.

Kurdistan Region’s boom in foreign investment has been accredited to its accommodating Investment Law, passed in 2007. The law provides incentives for foreign investors including the possibility of owning land, up to 10 year tax holidays, easy repatriation of profits and removal of tariffs on exports and imports related to the project.

Figures obtained from the Kurdistan Regional Government’s Ministry of Trade last month showed a 30% increase in the number of foreign companies registering in Kurdistan Region in 2011. Up from 331 companies in 2010 to 433 companies this year.


© Aknews