The US has handed out a fresh multi-billion dollar contract to two firms to rebuild Iraq's infrastructure.
Bechtel's current contract covers Iraq's power systems
Both the firms awarded the $1.8bn deal - Bechtel and Parsons - are already on the ground in Iraq. Bechtel's existing deal is worth about $1bn.
Both are also major donors to the ruling Republican party and President George W Bush's 2000 election campaign.
The Bush administration rejected suggestions that there was a connection between donations and deals.
"This contract and selection was run completely by USAID (the US Agency for International Development)," said USAID procurement director Tim Beans.
"There was no influence whatsoever, either direct or indirect."
BECHTEL RECONSTRUCTION PROJECTS
Power: rebuilding Daura, Bayji power plants, restoring 400KW transmission lines
Water and sewage: repair Baghdad sewage system, Sweet Water Canal
Telecoms: restoring Baghdad system and national fibre-optic backbone
Ports: opened Umm Qasr to deep water shipping
Airports: restored Baghdad and Basra international airports
Buildings: rebuilt 1,239 schools, health clinics, fire stations
Share the load
According to Bechtel, the lead contractor on the new project, its existing work in Iraq has mostly been farmed out to local subcontractors.
The new two-year Iraq Infrastructure II deal will spend about $1bn on power projects, seen as key to getting the country's economy under way.
Another $210m is earmarked for water and sanitation, with $109m destined to fund improvements in the transport system.
Iraqi contractors will again be in line for a share of the business, as - in principle - will firms from any country not barred from government work, such as Iran or Libya.
In practice, though, non-US or Iraqi firms have yet to see much of the action.
Bechtel and Parsons are two of the largest US engineering companies.
Both have a long history of working in the Gulf. They have previously worked together on landmark projects including the construction of Jubail and Yanbu - twin industrial cities on the east and west coasts of Saudi Arabia.