1st Hamburg Business Day Iraq

  • May 25, 2009
  • 9:30 am to 4:00 pm
  • Hypo Vereinsbank, Alter Wall 22, Hamburg

Economic Demands for the Reconstruction of Iraq

May 25th, 2009
09.30 a.m. – 4.00 p.m.
Hypo Vereinsbank, Alter Wall 22, Hamburg

The „Hamburg Business Day Iraq“ presented perspectives on the development of the Iraqi economy and information on possibilities for trade and investment in the country. The Iraqi Economy will become ever more important for German Trade and Investment. That is not only because of the energy area, where Iraq will take an important role in delivering oil supplies for the world market, but also because of the reconstruction that is taking place in other sectors, like infrastructure, health, agriculture, environment and culture. Iraq offers great opportunities for investment and exports for German businesses. The conference offered participants the opportunity to exchange views and to get into contact with business leaders, decision-makers and academic experts for economics, politics and law. The event was organized by EMA in cooperation with the embassy of Iraq and the Hypo Vereinsbank Hamburg.

09.00 a.m. : Reception

  •  Prof. Dr. Jochen Vogel, Moderator

 

09.30 a.m. : Opening

  • Prof. Dr. Ralf Busch, Member of EMA
  • Klaus Greger, Director for business clients, Hypo Vereinsbank

Greeting

  • Economic Demands for the Reconstruction of Iraq; H.E. Alaa A. Hussain Al-Hashimy, Ambassador of the Republic of Iraq

 

10.00 a.m. – 11.00 a.m. Panel I: General Information on the Economic Conditions in Iraq

Moderator: Prof. Dr. Jochen Vogel, Moderator

  • The Current Security Situation in Iraq; Klemens Semtner, Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  • The Economic Forum Iraq; Ralf Grauel, WPI-Wirtschaftsplattform Irak
  • Personal Safety in Iraq; Matthias Keil, Command Risks Management
  • Discussion

11:00 a.m. Break

 

11:30 a.m. – 1.00 a.m. Panel 2: Project Funding and Aid for German Investments

Moderator: Prof. Dr. Jochen Vogel, Moderator

  • Funding Methods; Ulrich Niemeyer, Hypo Vereinsbank
  • The Investment Laws in Iraq; Dr. Achim Börner, Börner Rechtsanwalt
  • Legal Framework Requirements for starting a business in Iraq; Saleh Majid, Legal Consultant

Discussion

1:00 p.m. Lunch

 

2:00 p.m. Panel 3: Presentation of Current Projects

Moderator: Prof. Dr. Jochen Vogel, Moderator

  • Investment and Cooperation in Iraq: A Report on Practical Experiences; Horst-Dieter Becker, German Medical Services
  • Business in Iraq; Prof. Dr. Josef Schleicher , Daimler-Benz (enquired)
  • Economic Practice in Iraq; M. al-Janabi, AHG Industry Iraq (enquired)

Concluding Debate

Successful kick-off event of the Hamburg Business Days

“If the Iraq Business Day had taken place earlier, I and my company would have been spared a lot of energy, time and setbacks. Events like these finally offer us entrepreneurs a network that makes it much easier for us to find information, experts and partners”. This was one of many positive results of the participants who had accepted the invitation of EMA to the HypoVereinsbank at the Alten Wall in Hamburg last Monday.

The conference on the economic requirements for the reconstruction of Iraq was opened with a speech by the economic attaché of the Iraqi Embassy, Abdullah Al-Gailani. In front of about 100 representatives from business, politics, finance and science, Mr. Al-Gailani pointed out that an improvement of the bilateral political and economic relations between Iraq and the Federal Republic of Germany is of mutual interest. Not only Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki had given a clear signal during his visit to Germany in early summer 2008 when he called on German investors to participate in the reconstruction of Iraq. The visit by Foreign Minister Frank Walter Steinmeier in spring 2009 was also another major step towards resuming successful cooperation.

Klemens Semtner of the Federal Foreign Office confirmed that the security situation had developed positively in recent months, although it was still too early to assume that the security situation would improve continuously in the future. However, the failure of religious extremists and the broad support for the rule-of-law coalition under Prime Minister al-Maliki could be seen as a milestone on the road to a secure Iraq. It remains to be seen how the withdrawal of US troops, the Kurdish elections in July 2009 and the parliamentary elections in January 2010 will proceed.

Since civilian reconstruction has so far received only limited attention in the German media, journalists Ralf Grauel and Gunnar Maul provided information about an alternative information platform that brings together German and Iraqi interests.

In further articles, e.g. by the consultant for international business of the HypoVereinsbank, Ulrich Niemeyer, and the lawyers Dr. Börner and Umerr al-Khatib, information was provided about the legal and financial situation and possibilities. Everyone agreed: “The orders are on the street in Iraq. They only have to be picked up”.

Olaf Hoffmann of Dorsch Consulting described how an economic cooperation with Iraq can work. He also informed about possibilities and limits in the private sector and security. One should never forget, said Hoffmann, that misunderstandings can always arise during cooperation, but that these can be overcome by professional help such as workshops. “Iraq is an advanced country, but it is feasible. It is only a question of finding the right people.”

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2009-5-25 9:30 am 2009-5-25 4:00 pm Europe/London 1st Hamburg Business Day Iraq Hypo Vereinsbank, Alter Wall 22, Hamburg
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