Modern shops and department stores are spreading throughout the country, replacing traditional bazaars. Baghdad, Mosul, and Basra, as well as other large and medium-size cities, all have modern supermarkets and branches of the official department store, "al-Makhazin al-Iraqiyyah." Baghdad leads in wholesale trade and in the number of retail shops.
The previously state-owned economy has been suffering since the 1980-1988 Iran-Iraq War. The 1990 Kuwait invasion and the subsequent international military intervention caused even greater damage to the infrastructure and resulted in international sanctions that crippled the economy. With the 2003 ousting of Saddam Hussein by international coalition forces, the way is paved to reopen the Iraqi economy to international trade. However, the nation will likely be highly dependent on foreign aid and investment for a number of years.
Normal banking hours in summer are 8 AM to noon, Saturday–Wednesday, and 8 to 11 AM on Thursday; winter openings and closings are an hour later.