Russian newspaper: China is betting on Baghdad to increase its influence in the Middle East
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In a report published on "Beijing's bets and investments in Iraq," the newspaper said that Chinese government companies signed an agreement with the Iraqi authorities to build 1,000 schools, indicating that Baghdad hopes to restore the education system destroyed by war with the help of the People's Republic of China.
Beijing expects, according to the newspaper, to increase its influence in the Middle East by relying on Iraq, which attracts most Chinese investments in the region, noting that China has become the largest buyer of Iraqi oil.
The newspaper quoted the Orientalist and political expert, Elena Suponina, as saying: "Iraq has always attracted the attention of the Chinese. In the days of Saddam Hussein, they were interested in oil and gas fields and signed contracts. Even after Saddam's overthrow, the Chinese managed to gain a foothold in that market, Although they invested in a very small scale, due to the difficult security situation there. Even the Chinese workers were taken hostage by the terrorists. After every such incident, the Chinese business was becoming more cautious. However, Iraq, for China, is estimated Oil reserves of at least 112 billion barrels, opens the appetite."
She added: "After the Americans toppled Saddam, it was believed for a long time that American companies would come to Iraq, and that oil was their biggest concern. It turned out that this is not the case. Although there is an American business in the Iraqi market, it is very limited. It has raised insecurity The fear of American investors. And the development of oil production in the United States made it possible for Washington to abandon its heavy presence in Iraq without pain. On the other hand, the Chinese are filling the void that appeared after the Americans eased their focus on the region. But Russian companies are also working in Iraq. For her, strengthening the presence of the Chinese could be a serious competition."
In the middle of this month, the Iraqi government signed 15 contracts with the Chinese side to build 1,000 schools in different parts of the country.
On the twenty-eighth of last November, the Iraqi military authorities reported a security alert to protect Chinese companies implementing a project to build 1,000 schools across Iraq.
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