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Cablegate: Iraq: Wfp Procurement/Logistics Update

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS ROME 001437

SIPDIS


SENSITIVE

FROM U.S. MISSION TO THE UN AGENCIES IN ROME

STATE FOR NEA/IR AMBASSADOR RAPHEL, IO A/S HOLMES, IO/EDA
USDA/FAS FOR U/S PENN, ETERPSTRA, MCHAMBLISS, RTILSWORTH AND
LSCHATZ
USAID FOR AA/DCHA WINTER, AA/ANE, DCHA/OFDA, D/DCHA/FFP
LANDIS
JOINT STAFF FOR JE/J4/J5
NSC FOR JDWORKEN

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EAID EAGR AORC IZ WFP IRAQI FREEDOM
SUBJECT: IRAQ: WFP PROCUREMENT/LOGISTICS UPDATE

REF: (A) BAGHDAD 000188, (B) BAGHDAD 00089, (C) ROME 00983

Sensitive but unclassified -- please handle accordingly.

-------
Summary
-------

1. (SBU) The delivery of a minimum of 2.9 million metric
tons of food commodities into Iraq, in the period April-
September 2004, represents a significant operational
undertaking on the part of both World Food Program (WFP) and
the Iraqi Ministry of Trade (MOT). This task will require a
carefully calibrated rationalization of all resources -
staff, ports, transport, borders, warehouses, etc. WFP
suggests that several senior-level MOT officials (with
decision-making powers) be detailed to the WFP Iraq
Operation in Rome for a period of 2-3 months to: a)
rationalize allocation of all commodities under procurement;
and b) adjust allocation plans on the basis of complete
information on changing circumstances (warehouses, ports,
supplier delivery, etc.). The hoped for result is reduced
competition for the same resources and capacities. WFP's
proposal may merit serious consideration. End summary.

----------
Background
----------

2. (U) US Mission/Rome USAID Humanitarian Assistance Attach
Lavelle and USAID Program Specialist Lamade met with Amer
Daoudi WFP Senior Logistic officer on April 8. He confirmed
that WFP had purchased as of March 31 a total of 1.619
million metric tons of commodities related to the
CPA/WFP/MOU January 8, 2004 procurement of buffer stocks and
shortfall commodities. Commodities procured (in metric
tons-mts) include: rice, 222,500 mts; milk powder, 58,600
mts; salt, 19,670 mts; ghee, 121,500 mts; tea, 24,000 mts;
wheat, 897,500 mts; detergent, 56,700 mts; sugar, 201,700
mts; soap, 13,000 mts; and infant formula, 4,800 mts. The
tentative supply delivery timeframe is April-June 2004.
Note. On the wheat purchase, 325,000 mts was procured from
U.S. suppliers. End note.

--------------------------------------------
Anticipated Oil-for-Food (OFF) food arrivals
--------------------------------------------

3. (U) Confirmed OFF scheduled food commodity arrivals for
the period March-June 2004 are estimated at 956,427 mts; no
arrivals are scheduled after June. OFF food commodities
without any confirmation of dispatch arriving during the
period March-September 2004 are estimated at 269,646 mts.

--------------------------------------------- ------
Some of the logistical difficulties as WFP see them
--------------------------------------------- ------

4. (SBU) WFP listed the following problem areas:

a) Um Qasir port - looting reportedly goes on day and night
and the port is still not, in WFP's view, secure. Moreover,
as per Daoudi, there has been a large decline in thru-put.
In February 2003, Um Qasir was reportedly handling 500,000-
600,000 mts/month. At present monthly thru-put is about half
that;

b) ships in ports (Um Qasir, Aqaba) are often taking from
four-six weeks to discharge. WFP gave the following example
for Um Qasir port. The M/V Anangel Power loaded with 33,000
mts of wheat arrived at port on February 26; grain samples
drawn, February 29; samples sent to Baghdad, March 03;
results received back on March 07; first line ashore, March
26; same day some insects found and fumigation of holds
begin; discharge commences on March 31 afternoon; total
discharge as of April 7, 22,618 mts;

c) In Mosul, WFP trucks are presently waiting seven days for
offloading to commence;

d) The Iraqi MOT is reportedly going ahead with its own

purchase of 900,000 mts of food commodities (over and above
the WFP and OFF commitments described above), which will
place additional strain on the already overloaded logistics
system;

e) The beginning of June sees the commencement of the wheat
harvest in Turkey, Syria and Iraq. This will result in a
shortage of transport capacity within the Turkish and Syrian
corridors, as well as a shortage in storage capacity in
Syria, Turkey and Iraq;

f) the commercial sector and the Coalition Forces are also
competing for the same trucking fleets. WFP, which has been
paying on average approximately USD 35/mt, is finding it
increasingly difficult to find trucks.

----------
Next steps
----------

5. (SBU) WFP proposes the creation of a joint WFP-MOT
Logistics cell, to be based in Rome, whereby several senior-
level MOT officials (with decision-making powers) would be
detailed for a period of 2-3 months to: a) rationalize
allocation of all commodities under procurement; and b)
adjust allocation plans on the basis of complete information
on changing circumstances (warehouses, ports, supplier
delivery, etc. The favorable result expected is greatly
reduced competition for the same resources and capacities.

-------
Comment
-------

6. (SBU) US Mission/Rome has worked extensively on major
emergency operations with Amer Daoudi (Ethiopia, 2000-2001;
Afghanistan theater, 2002; and in the Iraq operation, where
WFP effectively moved 2 million tons of food supplies in the
period April-December 2003) and finds him to be both highly
committed and effective. US Mission believes that WFP's
proposal merits serious consideration.

7. (U) Minimize considered.
Cleverley


NNNN
2004ROME01437 - Classification: UNCLASSIFIED

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