Foreign Investment in Iraq Up

American firms may miss early opportunities
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 17, 2008 4:09 PM CDT
Iraqi men look on inside an electronic store in the Karradah neighborhood in Baghdad, Iraq, on Thursday, Dec. 6, 2007.    (AP Photo/Khalid Mohammed)
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(Newser) – European and Asian investors are taking advantage of the recently stabilized Iraqi business climate, USA Today reports. US firms still regard Iraq as too dangerous to invest in, but that attitude may cost them the best opportunities. The firms “who are getting in on the ground floor are not American," says a Pentagon official. "It's ironic."

Iraq has attracted $500 million in foreign investment just this year. Many of the countries with the largest business presence—such as France, Russia and Turkey—did not take part in the initial invasion. Americans' cold feet perplex some. Says a Washington-based Iraqi official: "My question is, 'Where are you guys in terms of investment, in terms of economic engagement?'”