Iraq is negotiating with banks to provide funding for its largest housing project after resolving a dispute with the South Korean Hanwha Engineering and Construction which is building the city, the official news agency (INA) said on Tuesday.

In January, the National Investment Commission (NIC) agreed with Hanwha to resume work on “Bismaya City” after the firm decided to stop because of the government’s failure to pay its outstanding dues for two years.

“We are now in the process of negotiating with banks to provide funds to complete the project…after we reach an agreement, we will sign a new deal with Hanwha to construct the remaining units in the project,” NIC spokesman Muthanna Al-Ghanimi told INA.

He said Hanwha had built nearly 30,000 houses along with the infrastructure and commercial, health and educational facilities.

OPEC member Iraq awarded the $7.7-billion contract to Hanwha for the construction of 100,000 houses in Bismaya near the capital Baghdad in May 2012. Work began in 2013 but was obstructed by internal hostilities and cash shortages.

(Writing by Nadim Kawach; Editing by Anoop Menon)