Iraq

Country Summary

2022 population pyramid

Introduction

Background

Formerly part of the Ottoman Empire, Iraq was occupied by the United Kingdom during World War I and was declared a League of Nations mandate under UK administration in 1920. Iraq attained its independence as a kingdom in 1932. It was proclaimed a "republic" in 1958 after a coup overthrew the monarchy. The invasion of Kuwait in 1990 led to a period of instability as the country strove to install a representative government.

Geography

Area

total: 438,317 sq km

land: 437,367 sq km

water: 950 sq km

Climate

mostly desert; mild to cool winters with dry, hot, cloudless summers; northern mountainous regions along Iranian and Turkish borders experience cold winters with occasionally heavy snows that melt in early spring, sometimes causing extensive flooding in central and southern Iraq

Natural resources

petroleum, natural gas, phosphates, sulfur

People and Society

Population

40,462,701 (2022 est.)

Ethnic groups

Arab 75-80%, Kurdish 15-20%, other 5% (includes Turkmen, Yezidi, Shabak, Kaka'i, Bedouin, Romani, Assyrian, Circassian, Sabaean-Mandaean, Persian)

Languages

Arabic (official), Kurdish (official), Turkmen (a Turkish dialect), Syriac (Neo-Aramaic), and Armenian are official in areas where native speakers of these languages constitute a majority of the population

Religions

Muslim (official) 95-98% (Shia 61-64%, Sunni 29-34%), Christian 1% (includes Catholic, Orthodox, Protestant, Assyrian Church of the East), other 1-4% (2015 est.)

Population growth rate

2% (2022 est.)

Government

Government type

federal parliamentary republic

Capital

name: Baghdad

Executive branch

chief of state: President Barham SALIH (since 2 October 2018); vice presidents (vacant)

head of government: Prime Minister Mustafa al-KADHIMI (since 7 May 2020)

Legislative branch

description: unicameral Council of Representatives of Iraq (COR) or Majlis an-Nuwwab al-Iraqiyy (329 seats; 320 members directly elected in 83 multi-seat constituencies by single nontransferable vote, 9 seats reserved for minorities - 5 for Christians, 1 each for Sabaean-Mandaeans, Yazidis, Shabaks, Fayli Kurds, and 25% of seats allocated to women; members serve 4-year terms); note - in late 2020, the COR approved an electoral law, replacing the proportional representation voting system with the single non-transferable system

Economy

Economic overview

oil-dependent Middle Eastern economy; COVID-19 disruption and domestic economy fragility post-US presence; poverty increases; currency devaluation leading to inflation; import-dependent for most sectors; evaluating fiscal and monetary restructuring

Real GDP (purchasing power parity)

$372.27 billion (2020 est.)

Real GDP per capita

$9,300 (2020 est.)

Agricultural products

wheat, barley, dates, tomatoes, rice, maize, grapes, potatoes, rice, watermelons

Industries

petroleum, chemicals, textiles, leather, construction materials, food processing, fertilizer, metal fabrication/processing

Exports

$50.61 billion (2020 est.)

Exports - partners

China 26%, India 24%, South Korea 9%, United States 8%, Italy 6%, Greece 6% (2019)

Exports - commodities

crude petroleum, refined petroleum, gold, dates, petroleum coke (2019)

Imports

$54.72 billion (2020 est.)

Imports - partners

United Arab Emirates 28%, Turkey 21%, China 19% (2019)

Imports - commodities

refined petroleum, broadcasting equipment, cars, jewelry, cigarettes (2019)


Page last updated: Wednesday, Jun 15, 2022