The leading cell phone company Iraqna is set to take in nearly $520 million in revenues in 2006. That follows a record year in 2005 of $333 million. The leading export of Iraq is producing nearly $41 billion in revenues. In 2004 there were only 8,000 registered companies with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce - today there are over 34,000.
While we in the U.S. are thrilled to hear about GDP (gross domestic product) coming in at around 4% (so much so that it begins to bring down our national debt faster than expected), imagine enjoying Iraq's GDP growth of 13% in 2006. Which followed a record year in 2005 of 17%.
Since 2003 the salaries of average Iraqis have risen in excess of 100%. In addition the Iraqi government has slashed the income tax rates from 45% to just around 15%. That has resulted in the average Iraqi family being able to develop long term nest-eggs (we call them IRAs).
Gasoline is only .56 cents a gallon. It wouldn't be that high except that Iraq decided to payoff some of its debt to the World Bank and are using energy profits to do so.