Iraq Urges Iranian Firms to Help Modernize Baghdad

A00870807.jpgTEHRAN (FNA)- Baghdad Mayor Saber al-Aisawi has asked Iranian firms’ help to upgrade level of municipal services in the capital.

The mayor has signed a joint agreement with Tehran under which Iranian firms are to start developing the city, home to more than six million people.

Iranian firms are to enter into joint cooperation deals with Iraqi counterparts “to construct roads, bridges, tunnels and help with garbage collection,” said Aisawi.

The deal is estimated at hundreds of millions of dollars.

Tehran Mayor Mohammed Baqer Qalibaf was in Baghdad last week and has promised to send in teams of engineers and technicians to reconstruct the war-torn capital.

“Iranian firms will help modernize the capital by building new parks, expanding green areas, constructing multi-storey car parks, improving the city’s sewage system and drinking water plants and network,” Aisawi said.

Aisawi’s counterpart is reported to have vowed to open a branch of Tehran’s municipal department in Baghdad, saying that the city’s inhabitants should very soon feel the difference.

Tehran has even promised to start work on the much delayed project of Baghdad metro.

In the years since the US invasion of 2003, Iran has emerged as Iraq’s main trade partner. Trade exchange is estimated at billions of dollars.

Iranian firms are doing brisk business in most parts of Iraq.

Even the Kurdish-held north, a relatively safe enclave, relies heavily on trade with Iran for survival.

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