Muhammad-Ali Zainy* THE IRAQI ECONOMY BETWEEN SADDAM HUSSAIN AND THE UN SANCTIONS**

The Iraqi National Economy

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In order to have a feel for and appreciate as to what happened to the Iraqi economy under Saddam Hussain and the sanctions, how bad and how dire the Iraqi economic situation has become, it is necessary that you should be exposed to an overview of the Iraqi economy before the Gulf War and the imposition of economic sanctions.  More effectively still, you should be exposed to the Iraqi economic picture before the Iran-Iraq war.  Only in that way can you develop a sense of comparison between the Iraqi economic situation now and the one in the not-so-distant past.

 The Iraqi economy until 1980

From the beginning when Iraq started receiving oil revenues in the form of royalties in the 1930s, this income was treated as a budgetary surplus to be used for financing various capital projects.  The disposition of these revenues, however, was not subject to conscious planning until 1950.  Serious Iraqi economic development planning and investments, to cure the state of underdevelopment of the Iraqi economy, started in the early 1950s when oil revenues became relatively abundant.

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