Petroleum Engineering and Construction Corporation (CPECC), a Chinese Firm, donated equipment to the Directorate of Education in Basra, a Southern province in Iraq, to support the local students. The donation ceremony attended by Liu Haijun, CPECC’s President, was held in Basra on February 28.

During the ceremony, President Liu said that the company hopes that its modest initiative will contribute to support the education sector in the province of Basra. He also said that they have made clear achievements in providing job opportunities for Iraqi people, developing relations with local companies and focusing on providing skills and technology transfer through the establishment of an international training centre.

CPECC’s donation is estimated at around $460,000 United States dollars in the form of 5,440 desks, 250 printers, 10 teaching TV’s, 1000 whiteboards, and 200 school bags. The Chinese company has been involved in humanitarian activities and assistance in the aim of sharing their profit to the community. According to the company’s president, they have provided support for two schools worth 100,000 dollars, provided assistance for Basra University with up to 100,000 dollars and sent 10 students for training in China.

President Liu also said that he looks forward to seeing a better future in Iraq. He added that he hopes for the development of Iraqi-Chinese relations to serve the interests of the people of both nations. The Chinese firm’s humanitarian effort adds to the growing influence of China in the region as it pursues its Belt and Road Initiative.

Chinese companies have been expanding in nations around the globe to pave the way for the initiative despite the criticism of the United States and its allies. The Chinese economic giants supported its neighbouring Asian nations through infrastructure projects and grants. Its companies also expanded in the European region.

In his speech during the ceremony, Ali Hamad, the Assistant Director of Basra’s Education Directorate, said that although the company’s main business is the oil sector, it is well done by the CPECC to donate in support for the sector of education, which is taking a major role in developing the local community.

He also expressed his gratitude for the Chinese company for the initiative to donate some important equipment that Basra’s education directorate needs to provide service to Basra’s students.

Mr. Hamad also called for the development of cultural relations between Basra’s education sector and the Chinese company. He said that Basra needs materials and equipment, and the two parties need more cultural exchanges.