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May 02, 2009



Oh congratulations, you've got raivo pommer syndrome...

Anyway. What was I going to say?

I wondered if the timing was planned - the UK unveils a big conference to attract private investment into Iraq, the same day it pulls its troops out of Basra

Yes, the timing was planned. Downing Street made an explicit troops leave/business arrives announcement. It's supposed to show the "success" of the war. Dead people = buiness opportunities. Lovely.

Brown said export credit guarantees would be reviewed.

Will the government actually underwrite project finance in Iraq? Dunno - probably depends how much pressure it gets from which arm of business.

At the moment, the Treasury is directly providing project finance to prop up the PFI - public money to replace non-existant private finance - so on the one hand there's not much they won't do to help the infrastructure firms.

On the other hand, the government is already underwriting a shed-load of toxic banking. I'm not sure at what point the taxpayer's underwriting capacity is deemed to have run out...

Still, I'm sure that Brown will want UK firms to get a nice chunk of the Iraq spoils, so he will probably come up with something.

I'm sure it's not that long since the government was paying out millions in export credit guarantee money to firms that lost money in the last wave of exports to Iraq - arms for Saddam Hussein...

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