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Iraq unveils five-year plan to diversify economy

The Iraqi government has released a five-year economic plan, which will try to diversify beyond oil production and develop the industrial sector, Reuters has reported. The plan for the years 2013 to 2017 calls for investment of around $357bn in development projects across the country, focusing in particular on building and services, agriculture, education, transport and communications, and energy sectors. About 79% of that investment total would come from the government and the rest from the private sector. "The government made a decision to focus on other sources in the country instead of oil, so the new plan will basically focus on industry instead of oil," said deputy prime minister for energy affairs, Hussain al-Shahristani.