When we look back on the achievements, failures and missed opportunities of Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) in 2016, there are both instances of good governing and grave incompetence that plagues Kurdistan Region’s relative success.
One of its key strengths lays in welcoming refugees and displaced people from conflict-ridden territories in the region. This is particularly the case as Kurdistan Regional Government hosts more than two million IDPs and Refugees, including Christian, Yezidi and other minority groups that were (and still are) under threat by the Islamic State group (also referred to as ISIS/ISIL).
Here are a list of key issues that the government has failed to resolve
- KRG Political deadlock (No active parliament)
- Unable to pay civil servant salaries, leading to strikes by civil servants, particularly teachers, and a general decline in education sector
- No improvement in public health sector, despite influx of injured people fleeing conflict areas in the region
- Shingal situation with PKK affiliated armed group, lack of accountability for those responsible for the fall Shingal, which led to ISIS group kidnapping thousands of Yezidi women as sex slaves, and killing countless others in the process.
- Baghdad relations soured, and no resolution in sight
- Talks of referendum, but nothing has materialised
- Agricultural and economic failures
- Lack of diversification of economic sources, despite constant calls from Kurdish politicians on the necessity of doing this to increase job opportunities for those unemployed.
Here are a list of successful initiatives
- Hosts millions of refugees and IDPs, despite fighting a terror-designated group ISIS
- Security in region relatively better than neighbouring regions with few terror incidents.
- Biometric registration launched
- Improved diplomatic relations
- Landmark loan agreement with UK government
- New reform initiative launched by KRG Deputy Prime Minister Qubad Talabany
- Pushes for transparency in oil and gas sector
- Two week campaign to eliminate violence against women and other efforts (although not successful) to eliminate violence against women, as well as children.