U.S. channels USD 40 billion into reconstruction projects in Iraq


Baghdad : The United States spent USD 40 billion on Iraq reconstruction projects, including some USD 3 billion on compensations for victims of violence in Iraq, a US army commander said here Saturday.

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Among the important projects being implemented in Iraq is the project to rehabilitate the vocational training centers.

The number of such centers falls short of meeting the expectations of the increasing population of Iraq, said commander of the Gulf Contingent of the US Army Corps of Engineers Colonel Gabriel Levitz in a press conference at the headquarters of the Multi-National Force (MNF) in the Green Area.

The US senior officer disclosed that his contingent would work to increase the number of such centers, create more job opportunities and improve the economy of Iraq, he pointed out.

The vocational training centers cover only 60 percent of the needs of the Gulf country, said Levitz who leads the Iraqi reconstruction process.

The process envisages rehabilitating the Iraqi infrastructure that was destroyed by the 2003 war.

The United States has already spent USD 40 billion to fund 17,000 projects across Iraq, said Captain Joseph Price, coordinator of MNF and director of budget of the Gulf Contingent.

Out of the funds USD 3 billion were channeled into compensations for the families of Iraqi persons who fell victim to the terrorist acts, Price said, asserting that security aspect was part of the duties of his contingent.

Insecurity and unrest sometimes obstruct the implementation of reconstruction projects, he added.