Improving basic services and employment opportunities in Iraq

Assisting reconstruction and improving living conditions in Anbar (ARILA)

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  • Commissioning Party

    German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)

  • Country
  • Lead executing agency


  • Overall term

    2021 to 2025

  • Other Stakeholders

    Mercy Corps Europe, Near East Foundation (NEF)

  • Products and expertise

    Security, reconstruction, peace


Over the last two decades, the western Iraqi governorate of Anbar has seen many complex crises. The military invasion in 2003, the insurgency in 2007, and the spread of the so-called Islamic State between 2014 and 2017 destroyed a large part of the infrastructure.

Progress in reconstructing infrastructures for basic services is slow, and this is having a negative impact on relations between the state and the population. Anbar was long known for its construction and crafts industries. However, these sectors now offer very little opportunity to make a decent living.


Basic state services have improved and the population has more employment and income opportunities.


The project implements construction and repair measures together with local government, the population, and the cooperation partner Mercy Corps. Projects are chosen in consultation with the residents of the communities. As a result, a water treatment that supplies over 7,000 residents has been repaired in Fallujah already. Several parks, football pitches and a youth center are currently being rebuilt.

To create additional professional training opportunities, the project has prepared a labour market analysis, interviewing approximately 1,000 local employers and entrepreneurs. Based on the analysis, needs-based training is being developed for job seekers and the internal organisation of the vocational training center. Together with the Near East Foundation (NEF), the project trains micro and small enterprises to create more jobs in the construction and crafts sectors. NEF is also promoting 500 promising business ideas by providing financial support.

The project is training administrations and civil society actors on how to better involve women and disadvantaged groups in decision-making. Representatives from these groups can also access training in methods for advocacy and public participation.

Last update: June 2023

Additional information