TOKYO, Mar. 25, 2009 (Kyodo News International) -- Outgoing Iraqi Ambassador to Japan Ghanim Alwan al-Jumaily asked Japanese companies on Wednesday to help rebuild the Iraqi economy by boosting investments in the energy sector, which he said will benefit both sides over the long term.
Citing an improved security situation in the war-ravaged country, al-Jumaily said he wants Japanese companies to help provide Iraqi people with ''badly needed'' electricity supply through the construction of power stations and distribution networks there.
''We want to get Japanese companies to work in rebuilding the oil and energy sectors in Iraq in all of its aspects -- upstream, midstream and downstream,'' al-Jumaily said at a news conference in Tokyo before wrapping up his four and a half years of service here.
''Many Japanese companies have extensive experience in the energy sector,'' which he said is ''the most important sector for rebuilding Iraq's economy'' and is ''also the most important need for Japan.''
The envoy stressed the need for Iraq to generate jobs and extend basic public services such as water, electricity, education, transportation and housing as a way of reenergizing the economy and further improving public safety.
''Now is the time for Japanese companies to come to help Iraq resolve these major, major issues and needs in Iraq,'' said al-Jumaily, who is set to become Iraq's ambassador to Saudi Arabia after completing his current assignment at the end of March.