The World Bank is projecting a significant rebound in 2004 with growth estimates ranging anywhere from 30% to 70% and an overall economy worth $17 billion to $22 billion.
Bush administration officials are optimistic about reconstruction and project that Iraq’s growth will be close to the high end of the World Bank projection.
Salaries and pensions for public employees have been increased. Repair work on the power grid, oil facilities and roads are broadening throughout the economy. Farmers who could not get seed, fertilizer and animal feed in recent years are producing again.
The billions of dollars are pouring into Iraq acts as a powerful economic stimulus. The United States is expected to award contracts for $14 billion in reconstruction work this year and $4 billion to $5 billion next year.
Foreign Investment Increasing
Foreign companies are considering long-term investments in Iraq. Pepsi is refurbishing a bottling plant and Nestle has a bottled-water factory in planning stages. Fortune 500 companies researching the market for the best opportunities.