APPG Chair Robert Halfon MP tables Commons motion summarising findings of recent virtual delegation

That this House notes reports from the APPG on the Kurdistan Region in Iraq on a virtual delegation to meet Kurdistani leaders; fully acknowledges the crucial role of the Peshmerga in resisting the so-called Islamic State, that Kurdistan’s model of peaceful co-existence and equality are vital in continuing efforts to eradicate extremism, and that this is a vital UK interest; stresses the profound impact of covid-19 on oil revenues, which have fallen dramatically and may fade further as a proportion of the region’s income; further notes Kurdistan’s need to reform its public services and increase income from agriculture, tourism, and light industry with a bigger private sector and tackling corruption; wishes the KRG and the Iraqi Government the best in resolving their long-standing differences through the full implementation of Iraq’s federal constitution; believes that the APPG’s recommendations to the UK Government accord with its policy of supporting a strong Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) in a unified Iraq; further believes that the UK Government should organise an official trade mission to encourage investment by private companies and public institutions; recognises the central importance of universities to the new economy; commends the suggestion that the UK Government send experts to Kurdistan to assess higher education and make recommendations for reform; endorses the APPG’s recommendation for skills transfer to Kurdistani MPs; and urges the Foreign Secretary to visit Kurdistan as soon as possible and organise an official visit by the KRG leadership to London to advance bilateral relations.

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