meIraq Mining Expo 2011

We warmly welcome you to Iraq Mining 2011, a new international conference, exhibition and trade fair for the mining, mineral and material industries in Iraq.


  • After 2 years of planning, Iraq's first mining conference was held at London's Royal Garden Hotel, with senior Iraqi politicians, world mining companies and industry experts hailing it as a ground-breaking success.
  • Between the 7th and 8th of September 2011 attendees were given a revealing insight into the massive potential of Iraq's mineral and materials industries and the billions of dollars of potential wealth which could be generated, not only for Iraq but the world at large.
  • I'd like to thank the following Iraqi politicians and senior officials for attending:
    Dr Rowsch Nori Shaways, Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Iraq,
    Dr Ali al-Adeeb, Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research, 
    Dr Sami al-Araji, Chairman of the National Investment Commission,
    Dr Ali al-Dabbagh, Iraq Government Spokesman, 
    Mr Mohammed Abdullah, Deputy Minister of Industry and Minerals, 
    Dr Ahmed al-Shamma, Deputy Minister of Oil 
    Dr Samir Raouf, Deputy Minister of Science and Technology,
    Mr Fadel al-Mukh, adviser to Iraq's Prime Minister, 
    Mr Khaled Shiltagh, representative of Central Bank of Iraq,
    and from Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources, Kurdistan Regional Government, KRG:
    Mr Shirwan Azizi, Senior Advisor to the Minister,
    Dr Sharaf Ahmad, Advisor to the Ministry,
    Mr Saad Sadollah, Commercial Advisor
  • And a very special thanks to Dr Ali Allawi, former Iraq Minister of Finance, who introduced speakers at the conference and gave his own vision and insight. Also, Mr Munqith al-Baker, Senior Advisor to the Ministry of Industry and Minerals and Dr Khaldoun al-Bassam, Director General of Geosurv Iraq for their invaluable support and contribution.
  • I'd also like to thank Principal Partners: the Iraq Ministry of Industry and Minerals and the Iraq National Investment Commission; Event Partners: UK Trade and Investment and IBBC, and Lead Sponsors: Danieli and CCC, also Exhibitors: Aditya Birla Group, Ascom Geology and Mining, Dangote, Geosurv-Iraq, Getech, IBBC, Kier, Nordmeyer, Orascom, Vale, Welspun Corp, Principal Media Partner: Iraq Business News and Principal Airline Sponsor: SKA International Group.
  • Once again sincere best wishes to all of you for making Iraq Mining 2011 such a brilliant achievement.

    Dr Abbas al-Hussaini
    Iraq Mining 2011
    CEO, Symexco Ltd.


  • After decades of sanctions, war and sectarian violence Iraq is emerging as one of the most dynamic economies in the world, with vast oil and gas fields powering the country's revival
  • But now a new resource is attracting global investors: the glittering mineral wealth beneath Iraq's deserts and mountainous regions
  • Referring to The Klondike gold-rush bonanza 200 years ago, one key-note speaker at Iraq Mining 2011 said: "I call this Iraq's Minerals Rush!"
  • The sheer size of Iraq's mining and mineral resources are breathtaking.
  • The conference was told natural deposits are some of the biggest in the world, including an estimated 600 million tonnes of native sulphur in the Mosul region, 10 billion tonnes of phosphates and 75 million tonnes of quartz sand under the Western Desert, 8 billion tonnes of limestone in Al Anbar and Suleimani, 50 million tonnes of salt in Al Anbar and Al Basrah. All these figures are thought to be conservative.
  • There's gold under the Western Desert and in Kurdistan where there are also is millions of tonnes of zinc, copper and marble. Iraqi geology is also favourable to the discovery of platinum.
  • In business the right timing of a new venture is vital, and once again investors, especially Westerners, are being urged to make a move now.
  • The Conference heard the world's major mining and minerals companies are being offered deals worth billions of dollars, not only to extract but also convert Iraq's underground resources into key products for domestic and export markets.
  • Potential investment projects included plants for the production of: sodium sulphate in Salahadin Province, feldspar concentrate near Najaf, phosphates at Akashat, alumina at Akashat, silicone sand in al-Anbar province, Sodium Carbonate in Akashat, ceramic tables, sanitary ware and glass in various parts of Iraq.
  • Phosphates were identified as a massive growth market with a seemingly insatiable demand from India, Pakistan and Bangladesh where billions of tonnes of fertilisers for agriculture are needed annually. The Gulf region needs phosphates, as does Iraq, to maintain and grow agricultural economies
  • Other potential lucrative ventures include the millions of tonnes of cement and other building materials, like steel, which are urgently required for Iraq's massive construction projects including 3.5 million new homes in the next 5 years, a new railway system, new road expressways, airports, ports and iconic new buildings such as the Basrah Sports Complex.
  • Conference attendees heard there had been a sea-change in Iraqi Government economic policy: gone are the days of stagnation and bureaucracy; Baghdad's vision now included a liberal, transparent, free-market economy devoid of corruption.
  • Iraqi cabinet members revealed Iraq was fully open to foreign investment and wants to encourage it, especially with an Iraqi partner.
  • The Conference was told the Iraqi government has a 30 year economic plan for mines and minerals:
  • Up to 2015: "institutional building," introducing legislative changes to make Iraq more attractive to investors, establishing global links with international corporations and other entities, and 'smoothing' links between federal and provincial governorates.
  • 2015 to 2020: "expansion and exploitation of mineral resources, " which included "clustering" whereby interrelated industries and institutions drive wealth creation through innovation and the export of good and services
    2015 to 2030: the Iraqi government wants to see "sustainable and responsible growth in mining and minerals," in other words a green revolution of Iraq's minerals industries.
  • There was also a strong note of realism at the conference with reference to the huge challenges ahead both for Iraq and potential investors.
  • As one Iraqi key-note speaker put it: "I don't want to kid you everything is hunky-dory."
  • The Conference was told political stability was returning to Iraq and security improving all the time, despite recent bomb attacks.
  • But democracy had also brought its own bureaucracy and corruption persisted at many levels.
  • The Iraqi government is aware of these short-comings and is determined to eradicate layers of red-tape and stamp-out bribery.
  • Iraq's banking system, so vital to investors, was described at the Conference as: "primitive." They were told the Iraqi government is striving to upgrade services and this was: "work in progress." The Conference heard new bank arrivals in Iraq such as HSBC, Standard Chartered, Citibank and financial institutions including pwC would act as powerful catalysts for banking reform.
  • Investors also identified lack of credit facilities to fund major projects as a stumbling block. They were told the Iraqi government was working on this and Baghdad had noted several major US hedge funds now had Iraq in their sights for investment.
  • Iraq's National Investment Commission (NIC) was identified as one-stop shop to help foreign companies invest in mines and minerals. The NIC helps in obtaining licences, tax exemptions and land.
  • Iraq's Five Year National Development Plan for 2010-2014 targets economic growth at 9.4 per cent, including nearly 3,000 projects worth up to US$190 billion. Around US$11 billion was reconstruction and a further US$72 billion was earmarked for capital projects like roads and housing.
  • Overall the mood of the Conference was up-beat with potential investors showing keen interest in the massive wealth to be made out of Iraq's mining and minerals industries.
  • They also left with the clear message they would be involved in the re-building of a nation and working with a government determined to introduce a market-led, corruption free economy; a government ready to reach-out and to encourage foreign corporations - especially those with links to an Iraqi business partner.

The Aim

To facilitate constructive dialogue and exchanges between all the key players for rebuilding world class mining, mineral and material industries in Iraq.

The Objectives

  • To discuss and develop opportunities in the mining, mineral and material industries in Iraq.
  • To exhibit and to extend business links with all industries related to mining, minerals and materials in order to explore their suitability for revitalising the industries in Iraq.
  • To find the best solution for your business to work in Iraq and resolve problems, if any, through direct talks with the Minister, Senior Advisors or Director Generals of the relevant industry.
  • To develop networks as well as business cooperation and collaboration between governments, local industries. bankers, investors and their international counterparts.

Key Topics

  • Iraq's long-term view on trade and development
  • Future outlook of key minerals and commodities
  • Business in Iraq – the ins and outs
  • Iraq’s infrastructure and logistics
  • The Iraqi Ministry of Industry and Mining: strategy for growth
  • Iraq's economic reforms

Confirmed attendees

  1. H.E. Dr Rozh Nouri Shawis

    Deputy Prime Minister of Iraq



  2. H.E. Ahmad Nassir Al-Karbooli

    Minister of Industry and Minerals

  3. Dr Sami Al-Araji

    Chairman of the National Investment Commission

  4. Dr Thamer Ghadhban

    Head of PM Advisory Committee

  5. Mr Munqith Al-Baker

    Senior Advisor to Ministry of Industry and Minerals

  6. Dr Khaldoun Al-Bassam

    Director General, Geosurv Iraq, Ministry of Industry and Minerals



Exhibitors and Sponsors



CA Mining
FLS Midth Minerals