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France builds Iraq business center

Aim is to lure firms; embassy believes time is right.

July 9, 2010 10:39 by

France has taken a “leap ahead of its rivals” in the race to grab business opportunities in Iraq, reports Reuters.

The news agency says that France has built a heavily fortified business center and boutique hotel where businessmen can sleep, eat and work in safety.

“We say this is the time to come back to Iraq,” said Julien Kerdoncuf, deputy head of the embassy’s economic department. He says that businesses still have concerns over safety.

“And what we say is: ‘Listen, we take care of that, we arrange everything, you get offices, you get swimming pools, you get hotel accommodation, you get food over there, and security is everywhere, everything you need, so you do not have an excuse not to come’. It is time to come – and actually they are coming, that is the big deal.”

The complex has been funded by private companies and is located near to the French embassy in Baghdad. It has room for 20 offices, says the report, of which half are already taken, and ten bedrooms for visiting would-be investors.

Companies already on board include Lafarge and Total.

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