Bush’s Invasion of Iraq was an Economic Windfall for Turkey

Tuesday, March 19, 2013
Ibrahim al-Khalil border crossing between Iraq and Turkey (photo: Iraq Business News)

The governments of Turkey and Iraq don’t get along so well, but that hasn’t stopped Turkish goods and businesses from being invited into the war-torn country.


The fact is that the U.S. invasion of Iraq and the eight-year war that followed has turned out to be a great opportunity for Turkey, which didn’t even allow American troops to pass through its territory back in 2003.


But now that Iraq is getting back on its feet and both the government and consumers are spending money, Turkish exports are soaring, particularly in Kurdish-controlled northern Iraq, which is responsible for 70% of all the exports coming over the border from Turkey. The fact that Turkey has often brutally suppressed its own Kurdish minority does not seem to have had a significant effect on cross-border business affairs.


Over the past 10 years, Turkey’s goods and services to Iraq have ballooned by more than 25% a year. In 2012, the total value of the exports reached $10.8 billion. Iraq is now the second biggest importer of Turkish goods (behind Germany). Turkish construction companies are also flourishing in Iraq.


Economists expect Turkish businesses to do even better in the coming years as Iraq grows richer from its oil reserves.

-Noel Brinkerhoff


To Learn More:

Turkey Is Economic Winner of Iraq War (by Daniel Dombey, Financial Times)

Iraq-Business News


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