Iraq has approved a project to build a large new industrial city at a cost of around $50 million as part of post-war reconstruction plans, an official has said. 

The city, the latest in a series of industrial projects in the OPEC producer, has an area of nearly 9.5 square kilometre and is located in the central Najaf Governorate, said Dirgham Kiko, Chairman of the Najaf Investment Commission. 

Jiko, quoted Aleqtisad News and other Iraqi publications, said the project would be dedicated to such industries as petrochemicals, lubricants, glass and detergents. 

“This project will provide 5,000 jobs to Iraqis and its cost could exceed $50 million…we have received cabinet approval and have already selected a contractor,” Kiko said without identifying that contractor. 

The planned city, to be completed within 2 years, will house industries which are not permitted near residential areas for environmental reasons, he added. 

(Writing by Nadim Kawach; Editing by Anoop Menon)