Companies interested in a slice of the $18.4 billion allocated by the U.S. for Iraq’s reconstruction can find quick responses to their questions and register to receive information on business opportunities on a new Web site (http://www.export.gov/iraq) developed by the Iraq Reconstruction Task Force of the U.S. Commerce Department.
“There is $18.4 billion that has been appropriated for reconstruction efforts in Iraq. We want small- to medium-sized U.S. businesses to be able to access those contracts,” said Sandra Edwards, director of the department’s export assistance center in Savannah, who announced the Web site at The Thunderbird Forum at the Southern Center for International Studies in Atlanta last week.
While security is a risk that companies must manage, “there are ways to minimize the risk,” Ms. Edwards said. Up-to-date security information and links to security firms doing business in Iraq can be found on the Web site’s “Traveling in Iraq” page.
Ms. Edwards encouraged interested companies to register for “IraqAlert,” which e-mails notification of commercial developments and potential business opportunities in Iraq according to industry sectors and activities of interest. The service consolidates business opportunities from the Coalition Provisional Authority, private sector companies, subcontracting companies, Iraqi ministries and state-owned enterprises, the U.S. Army and other U.S. government tenders.
Web site addresses for direct access to those various sectors are also provided in the “Doing Business in Iraq” segment.
The Web site also includes responses to frequently asked questions, a chart of awarded contracts and subcontracts and an overview of Iraqi commercial law.
According to Ms. Edwards, prime contracts are limited to companies from the U.S., Iraq, coalition partners and force-contributing nations. Prime contractors are required to subcontract a minimum of 10 percent of the total value of their contracts to U.S. small- to medium-sized businesses.
Companies should demonstrate experience, financial capability, high competency of proposed in-country personnel, the ability to positively impact the Iraq economy through employment and the capacity to proceed quickly, according to the Web site. Before preparing or accepting proposals, bidders are encouraged to submit “Ability to Succeed” documents to the U.S. Army’s Program Management Office for preliminary feedback.
Contractors and subcontractors are entirely responsible for choosing their employees; therefore, interested parties should contact contractors and subcontractors directly for employment opportunities.
For more information, go to www.export.gov/iraq, call toll free 866-352-4727, or e-mail IraqInfo@mail.doc.gov.