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Parliamentary Finance Reveals The Date For Sending The Budget To Parliament !


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CNN. Broadcasting While Shaking The Budget To See What’s In It For The ‘Gift’ Of Eid Al-Fitr At The End Of Ramadan !
 

 

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Parliamentary Finance reveals the date for sending the budget to Parliament


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14:50 - 07/05/2020
 
 

The Parliamentary Finance Committee revealed, Thursday, the date for the government to send a draft federal budget law for 2020 to the House of Representatives.

Committee member Hanin Qaddo said in a statement to "Information", that "Mustafa Al-Kazemi after granting him confidence begins today from forming a committee of economic experts and members of the Finance Committee to amend the budget items in a way that suits the conditions that the country is going through", pointing out that "Al-Kazemi will be presented to Parliament Austerity budget. ”

He added that "the federal budget project for 2020 will be free of job grades and attention will be focused on the operational part of the budget related to the salaries of employees, retirees and other financial obligations,"noting that "Al-Kazemi will send the budget bill to the parliament before Eid al-Fitr."

And a responsible government source revealed, earlier, that the budget preparation team prepared a number of proposals for submission to the Council of Ministers, indicating that among the proposals deducted 75% of the allocations for special grades. 

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The exchange for the emergency grant will be launched from
tomorrow evening


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11:43 - 05/07/2020

 


The Social Solidarity Grant Team, approved by the Higher Committee for Health and National Safety, announced on Thursday that it will start disbursing the emergency grant from Friday evening.

A statement received / information /, a copy of it, stated that “the names of the applicants were verified and boycotted, and the eligible families were identified according to the conditions of the grant and installed in the database. The team also completed a very simplified mechanism for delivering the financial dues to the beneficiaries through the distribution ports approved by the Central Bank and spread throughout Iraq.”

The statement added, "The eligible people will receive text messages via their phone numbers, which include determining the amount of the entitlement and the closest outlet to receive the amount, and starting from tomorrow evening, Friday, 5-8-2020 and through meals distributed in all governorates with the aim of preventing any gatherings of citizens covered at the distribution outlets".

He continued: "The exchange will also be verified when it is launched electronically at the same moment, while there will be channels to communicate with those who have any obstacles, when they receive the amount, to address it immediately." 


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The Ministry of Planning sets a date for disbursing the social solidarity grant    LINK

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https://cbi.iq/news/view/1482

The central bank invites financial investment companies
to merge


image.jpeg.d9fc9edd6d996f47cb1f8602c306787c.jpeg

 

7th May, 2020

 

Proceeding from the goal of the Central Bank of Iraq towards achieving financial and banking stability and creating a competitive business environment, this bank invites private investment companies wishing to merge to form an investment institution consisting of two or more companies based on the Companies Law No. (21) of 1997 amending

This bank confirms that this process will create strength for the merged corporation and thus will provide it with rapid growth and that the formation of a larger entity covers wider services commensurate with the large size of the merged corporation and thus its access to broader financial services by this bank commensurate with its size


The Central Bank of Iraq

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“Al-Kazemi will send the budget bill to the parliament before Eid al-Fitr."


Eid al Fitr is Sunday May the 24...... June is looking promising for an increase of the dinar exchange rate.
 

Go RV 

Go asap

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In the document .. The Council of Ministers decides to suspend all forms of financial financing until the new government begins


%D8%A8%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%88%D8%AB%D9%8A%D9%82%D8%A9..-%D9%85%D8%AC%D9%84%D8%B3-%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%88%D8%B2%D8%B1%D8%A7%D8%A1-%D9%8A%D9%82%D8%B1%D8%B1-%D8%A5%D9%8A%D9%82%D8%A7%D9%81-%D9%83%D8%A7%D9%81%D8%A9-%D8%A3%D8%B4%D9%83%D8%A7%D9%84-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AA%D9%85%D9%88%D9%8A%D9%84-%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%85%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%8A-%D9%84%D8%AD%D9%8A%D9%86-%D9%85%D8%A8%D8%A7%D8%B4%D8%B1%D8%A9-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AD%D9%83%D9%88%D9%85%D8%A9-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AC%D8%AF%D9%8A%D8%AF%D8%A9.jpg

 

7th May, 2020

 

Translation...

 

The Council of Ministers decided at its eighteenth regular session in Tariq ۲۰۲۰۱۰/۰ the following 1. The Ministry of Finance has the right to suspend funding for all until the government’s days by studying the subject and taking safety decisions to address the decrease in revenues due to the low price of oil, except for the government grant Al-Tafsah, the blonde segment installed according to the General Secretariat of the Council of Ministers, numbered: sh. / ۱۱۲۳/۲۰/۲۹ Of the date of ۲۰۲۰/۹ / ئيس, and the Prime Minister in consultation with the Minister of Finance may launch the exchange when liquidity is available in the most necessary cases, and in a manner that does not contradict the relevant laws and the directives of the Prime Minister issued in implementation of.  This decision is implemented from the date of its issuance.

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11 minutes ago, Laid Back said:

June is looking promising


:o 

 

image.jpeg.8e293452ce90edda5b0748dfa26cfd88.jpeg

 

Go June !

Go Beaver !

Go Hammock Boy ! :lmao: 
 

:D  :D  :D 

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17 minutes ago, Laid Back said:

“Al-Kazemi will send the budget bill to the parliament before Eid al-Fitr."


Eid al Fitr is Sunday May the 24...... June is looking promising for an increase of the dinar exchange rate.
 

Go RV 

Go asap

 

June sounds just fine with me...

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Market Review: "Lockdown Iraq and the Month of Sundays"


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7th May, 2020 by Ahmed Tabaqchali



Iraq, like other countries, went into full lockdown on March 16th that was only partially lifted just before the fasting month of Ramadan - in which activity is normally subdued. Unlike many countries, Iraq went a step further in that its lockdown included its whole financial sector.

In particular, the Central Bank of Iraq (CBI) and the banks that it regulates suspended most activities during the lockdown.  In turn, this negatively affected the availability and circulation of the USD in the country's cash dominated economy - where about 85% of the currency in circulation is outside the banking system.

The CBI conducts five daily USD auctions every week to facilitate foreign trade transactions (transfers or green bars in the chart below) and to satisfy the need for physical USD for Iraqis travelling abroad (cash or red bars in the chart below). The closure of this facility over the lockdown period, and its much-reduced frequency following that, have naturally resulted in an unmet need for USD and hence a rise in its price in the market versus its official price.

Typically, the market price of the USD is at a premium to official prices, but spikes higher during periods of uncertainty or crises - the last of which were the momentous events at the start of the year that raised the feared spectre of a US-Iran proxy war fought in the country. This premium began to spike, and stayed at elevated levels, as the lockdown came into full effect as can be seen from the chart below.

 

AT-070520-1.png
 

(Source: Central Bank of Iraq (CBI), Asia Frontier Capital. The CBI did not provide market prices on March 16th-April 21st, so the chart assumes gradual increases in prices in this period)

 

Consequently, this affected the market price of the physical USD which normally trades at a further premium of 2-4% over the premium discussed above (i.e. the gold/brown line in the above chart). This extra premium widened, as it does during spikes, and is now about 8-10% and remained at these elevated levels by the CBI's ceasing of its offering of physical USD in its currency auctions from mid-March (above chart). In a country in which the dissemination of economic updates is poor and trust in the government is very low, rumours come to the fore and drive perceptions and subsequently fears.

One such rumour that dominated perceptions was that sharply falling oil prices were resulting in major USD shortages at the government level and it was thus conserving its reserves by stopping the flow of physical USD.This line of thinking has some merit as it takes its cue from a similar pattern during 2014-2017's twin crises of the ISIS conflict and the collapse in oil prices. However, then the CBI restricted the supply of the USD during its auctions but didn't stop either transfers or cash offerings. As it turned out, the physical USD offerings were halted as no foreign travel was taking place, given that they are meant to satisfy the needs of individuals' foreign travels.

Rumours of a USD shortage aside, the weakening of demand in the economy is evident as seen from the smaller volumes of transfers in the currency auctions during late April, and from the "Community Mobility Reports" provided by Google. These are based on data from mobile phone users who have opted-in for "Location History" on their Google accounts. These users provide a reasonable population sample given the high levels of mobile penetration in Iraq (chart below) - more so given the high combined Samsung/Huawei market share, a proxy for Google's Android system, which is about 75% in mobiles - and thus should provide a reasonable picture of economic activity during the lockdown.


AT-070520-2.png

(Source: Statista)


While every sector of the economy has felt the effects of the lockdown, the informal sector - dominated by retail trade, transport and hospitality, and which accounts for the bulk of private-sector economic activity in Iraq - has been particularly hard hit as can be seen from the chart below, which shows changes in activities compared to the baseline January 3rd-February 6th.


AT-070520-3.png

(Baseline is the median, for the corresponding day of the week, on January 3rd-February 6th, Source: Google, data as of April 30th)

 

However, the decline in activities are likely to have been more precipitous than shown in the above chart as activities in the retail, transport and hospitality sectors were subdued during the baseline period given the chilling effects of the dramatic events at beginning of the year. More so, these events came on the back of a slowdown induced by the continued countrywide demonstrations from October 2019.

The Iraq Stock Exchange (ISX) resumed trading on April 26th, after closing on March 16th, and in-line with government guidance of reduced commercial activity, it reduced trading days to three days per week from five. However, the board of governors of the ISX, in a misguided attempt to calm market fears, lowered the daily stock price limit downs to 5% from 10%, but kept the upside limit at 10%. Inevitably it did the exact opposite of its intended purpose, as the same low trust in authorities fuelled rumours that the market authorities were hiding some major negative news. The new limit-down limits served as magnets for sellers during the remaining three trading days of the month with prices obligingly closing down 5% on each of these days. As often happens in frontier markets, buyers disappear for several days as sellers chase down small bids and drive prices to very attractive levels. While prices tend to recover as buyers return to pick up bargains, which seems to be taking place in early May.

For the three days that made the trading month of April, the Rabee Securities RSISX USD Index (RSISUSD) was down 12.7%. The argument made here last month that " Iraq's equity market was discounting neither an economic nor a corporate earnings recovery, it's difficult to see why it should decline as other markets have elsewhere", is stronger now, especially given that the market by end of April is now down 75% from the 2014 peak.

The closing argument of the Asia Frontier Capital team in the March newsletter, is an appropriate end here.

"The recent stock market correction, though painful, is now providing an excellent entry point to investors as valuations across our universe are at 10-year lows - stock picking has never been easier. Though we believe global markets could remain volatile in the near term as the number of infections rise and poor economic numbers come through, a sustained rally could be seen once there is an indication of infections peaking especially in Europe and the U.S.

"Asian frontier markets have bounced back very strongly after previous episodes of market dislocation such as in 2008-09 with markets like Pakistan and Vietnam generating much higher returns than major indices. Though it is very easy to get distracted with the negative consequences of the pandemic, Asian frontier markets are at present and will over the next few months provide an opportunity to invest in these markets last seen a decade ago."

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Brent rises and exceeds the barrier of $ 30 a barrel


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18:50 - 07/05/2020
 
 

The price of Brent crude contracts for next July delivery rose today by about 5.5 percent, to trade at $ 31.35 a barrel

West Texas Intermediate (WTI) (US) crude for June delivery rose about 8.4 percent to trade at $ 26 a barrel.

Oil prices fell yesterday, Wednesday, after it had registered a major jump during the last nine sessions, as Brent crude rose 94 percent from the lowest price recorded on April 22 at about $ 16, while US crude jumped 144 percent from the lowest price during the period Same, the recorder is close to ten dollars.

This comes after the prices of Brent crude contracts rose yesterday by about 14.3% to record $ 31.1 a barrel, as West Texas Intermediate (WTI) US crude rose by about 20.5% to trade at $ 24.6 a barrel

These rises came thanks to the start of the OPEC + coalition countries to implement the agreement, which provides for a historic reduction of 9.7 million barrels per day, immediately after the sharp declines in oil prices, and did not wait for the start of the application that was scheduled for the first of (May). 

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New Minister of Industry: Our first slogan will be
"Made in Iraq"


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7th May, 2020

 

New Minister of Industry Manhal Aziz made, on Thursday, his first statement, while pledging that the ministry's first slogan will be "Made in Iraq

Aziz said in a tweet to him on "Twitter", followed by "Al-Iqtisad News", "After the Iraqi parliament gave me confidence to be a minister of the Ministry of Industry and Minerals, we pledge to do our best to work with the spirit of one team to return the Iraqi industry to the forefront and activate the idle factories and restore the citizen's trust National product and industry

"Our first slogan will be made in Iraq

The House of Representatives voted in a session held during the early hours of Thursday, on the authority of Manhal Aziz Mahmoud, Minister of Industry within the government of the new Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kazemi

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IBBC contributes to World Bank Iraq Report

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6th May, 2020


BBC contributes to World Bank launch and assessment on Iraq Economic Monitor

 

Iraq Economic Monitor - Spring 2020 - Navigating the Perfect Storm.

 

The World Bank has released its latest report on Iraq entitled "Navigating the Perfect Storm" with a special focus on "Laying the Foundations for a New Economy in Iraq: Digital Transformation". See link here.

The launch was done via a virtual media roundtable on 4th May and The Press release links can be found in English and Arabic. The report is also being circulated on the World Bank social media outlets.

Members of the IBBC advisory council, including Professor Frank Gunter, provided input that helped shape the final document, which predicts a GDP contraction of 9.7% in 2020 and some stark choices that country faces.

However, there is an extended section on Digital economy and transformation that points the way to change and opportunity.

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Structural Reforms Needed to Manage a Multi-Faceted Crisis


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6th May, 2020


Iraq is facing a combination of acute shocks which the country is ill-prepared to manage, according to a new World Bank report.

It says the outlook for Iraq, which was already negative prior to the COVID-19 shock, has markedly worsened since.

Click here to download the full report

50 page report 

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41 minutes ago, DinarThug said:


:o 

 

image.jpeg.8e293452ce90edda5b0748dfa26cfd88.jpeg

 

Go June !

Go Beaver !

Go Hammock Boy ! :lmao: 
 

:D  :D  :D 

Go DT 🤡

Go newshound 

Go information 

Thanks for all you do my friend 🤙🏽

41 minutes ago, DoD said:

 

June sounds just fine with me...

With me too 👍🏼😊

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Here’s Just A Portion Of The 50 Page Report Referenced From Further Above ! ;) 
 


U Didn’t Want All 50 - Did Ya ? :o 

 

 

Drop And Give Me Fitty’ ...

 

JollyBouncyDogwoodclubgall-size_restrict

 

:D  :D  :D 


 

 

FROM THE REPORT (DE = DIGITAL ECONOMY) :

############

 

Conclusion

 

The WBG and the GoI have jointly identified priority reform areas that have the strongest potential for achieving the objectives of 1) private-sector-led diversification and 2) reforming governance and promoting private-sector participation in selected
productive sectors that can subsequently boost Iraq’s participation in the DE. These priority reform areas cut across all five elements of the DE framework and are meant to boost accountability, transparency, and trust.
Transitioning Iraq towards a resilient and inclusive DE will require economic reforms and
longer-term development priorities along the five DE pillars: ensuring affordable access to high-speed Internet, achieving widespread adoption of cashless payments, delivering digital government services and improving access to data, upskilling young Iraqis with technological know-how, and scaling up the digital entrepreneurship ecosystem.
The proposed short- and medium-term improvements below are prioritized by promoting
actions with the highest potential to keep Iraq on track with its commitment to boosting its DE across the five pillars. These eighteen (18) critical recommendations are also included in the Strategic Note on Priority Reform Areas (aka “Iraq White Paper”):

• Immediate- to short-term measures: 1) removing restrictions on private operators to build, own, and operate domestic and international fiber infrastructure; 2) promulgating the Payment Systems Law to facilitate digital payments; 3) providing a timetable to update the 2012–15 e-Gov Strategy and Action Plan for a paperless government; 4) building confidence with online disclosure of information on public tenders and contract awards, starting with major transactions, and allowing for public feedback; 5) mandating startups and tech companies registration to select eligible support structures; 6) adopting a national
law on private equity and venture capital funds; 7) establishing a Seed Capital Fund; and 😎 in partnership with the private sector, piloting digital training programs for youth to increase their access to digital wage employment opportunities such as online freelancing, microwork, telework, outsourcing, etc

-Short- to medium-term measures: 9) allocating 4G spectrum; 10) developing and implementing PPPs in the rebuilding of critical fiber infrastructure to achieve 10 percent fiber connectivity by 2023; 11) rolling out National ID cards, 12) strengthening the existing cash payment systems through upgrading technologies for improved governance
and efficiency; 13) developing regulations to implement the Payment Systems Law; 14) reforming the curriculum for digital skills across the education spectrum, ranging from primary to tertiary institutions, including TVETs; 15) introducing programs that provide demand-driven digital training opportunities for youths; 16) establishing
an electronic system for e-visa issuance to attract foreign investors, 17) streamlining current legal requirements to start a business; 18) addressing government accountability in delivering services such as simple e-government tools (example: a mobile-based citizen feedback platform).

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A difficult decision for the Iraqi government due to the loss of 3 billion dollars a month

 

2020.05.07 - 15:51


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People - Baghdad  

 

Expectations indicate that Iraq may witness the worst annual performance of the country since the overthrow of Saddam Hussein's regime in 2003, especially as Baghdad is currently considering the possibility of deduction of huge public salaries, in a move that will receive popular rejection and the wave of protests may renew as the new government takes over .  

According to a report published by the French news agency, and followed by "Nass" (May 7, 2020), the GDP of Iraq is expected to decrease by 9.7 percent this year, and poverty rates may also double, according to the expectations of the World Bank, making this the worst annual performance The country since Saddam Hussein was toppled in 2003.  

The second largest producer of OPEC was affected by a double blow, firstly by the collapse of oil prices, and secondly by the Covid-19 pandemic, which dramatically affected its oil revenues.  

And Iraq’s oil revenues last month reached 1.4 billion dollars, less than a third of the four and a half billion that the country needs per month to pay public sector salaries, compensation and government costs.  

That is, the Iraqi government suffers every month from losing $ 3.1 billion in oil revenue.  

In the face of this crisis, officials may put massive payrolls on the deduction list, according to two senior officials involved in discussions to suggest solutions.  

The basis for salaries is more likely to remain the same, and austerity measures will extend to the large "allocations" that made up two-thirds of the $ 36 billion budget for salaries in 2019.  

These allowances include rewards or benefits such as cars and homes, based on factors that include seniority, educational level, children, or informally political and family relationships.  

An Iraqi official says that "the cuts we are studying include reducing the allocations of high-ranking public officials by more than half, the average level by 50 percent, and the low level by about 30 percent."  

The government will also consider freezing recruitment and promotions, cutting military spending, and stopping maintenance of government buildings to save more money.  

The authorities may even print the currency to pay salaries, which will force the central bank to use its foreign reserves of $ 60 billion to support the dinar exchange rate against the dollar.  

These measures are part of the $ 54 billion "emergency financing document", just over a third of the amount budgeted for the 2020 draft budget that parliament has yet to pass.  

"It is the first time that we have had to do something similar."  

" Too little, too late. "  

 And Iraqi economic analyst Ali Mawlawi told France Press that, with the deficit increasing every month, "What kind of measures will the government take now to try to avoid the economic disaster? It is really very little and very late."  

The government pays salaries to four million employees, pensions for three million, and aid for a million others, which means that one out of every five Iraqis receives what can be considered payments from the state.  

Maulvi says that the government of Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi, as its predecessors, has appointed employees to please political allies.  

He adds that "oil prices rose when Abdul-Mahdi took office, which led to a false sense of safety from his government, and expanded in the public sector to the stage of losing control, which led to this serious financial crisis."  

For 2019, the government monitored a 13 percent increase in salary expenses, and jumped 127 percent in pensions, according to a World Bank analysis.  

Late last year, the government employed at least 500,000 people in an effort to appease angry anti-government protesters protesting against unemployment and corruption, which led to salary inflation inflated again by 25 percent.  

Public jobs are inherited from the previous era in Iraq, as university graduates are theoretically employed by a related ministry upon their graduation. But this strategy has overburdened the public sector engulfed by corruption.  

The benefits associated with government positions mean that they are sold for hundreds of thousands of dollars by grade, while the private sector is regrettably unrepentant.  

"This is an economy that does not create jobs," says Wael Mansour, chief economist at the World Bank in Iraq.  

This raises problems in a country with rapid population growth, and is set to increase ten million in the next decade to 50 million.  

"If they really want to make an impact, the only place to do that is by salaries," says Mansour.  

difficult decision  

However, similar austerity measures "could spark more social unrest, with public services already weakening and unemployment rising," according to the World Bank.  

The new Prime Minister, Mustafa Al-Kazemi, had hoped that he would not have to start his mandate with cuts, but fear of public reaction prevented the caretaker government headed by Abdel-Mahdi from implementing the cuts.  

"No one wanted to take responsibility," says a second official involved in developing emergency procedures.  

The same official describes the meetings in which caretakers were more focused on signing last minute contracts that would earn them quick bribes, knowing that their days in government were numbered.  

Given the prospect of a further drop in oil revenues in May with lower prices and demand, things could get worse.  

"If we don't agree on something swift, there will be no money in June. We will have to announce a full government shutdown, and this is a precedent," the official said.  

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13 minutes ago, Laid Back said:

Go DT 🤡

Go newshound 

Go information 

Thanks for all you do my friend 🤙🏽

With me too 👍🏼😊

Go Go Go Inspector Gadget!

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1 hour ago, DinarThug said:

In the document .. The Council of Ministers decides to suspend all forms of financial financing until the new government begins
%D8%A8%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%88%D8%AB%D9%8A%D9%82%D8%A9..-%D9%85%D8%AC%D9%84%D8%B3-%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%88%D8%B2%D8%B1%D8%A7%D8%A1-%D9%8A%D9%82%D8%B1%D8%B1-%D8%A5%D9%8A%D9%82%D8%A7%D9%81-%D9%83%D8%A7%D9%81%D8%A9-%D8%A3%D8%B4%D9%83%D8%A7%D9%84-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AA%D9%85%D9%88%D9%8A%D9%84-%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%85%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%8A-%D9%84%D8%AD%D9%8A%D9%86-%D9%85%D8%A8%D8%A7%D8%B4%D8%B1%D8%A9-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AD%D9%83%D9%88%D9%85%D8%A9-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AC%D8%AF%D9%8A%D8%AF%D8%A9.jpg

7th May, 2020


The government of Abdul-Mahdi ends its journey with an urgent decision to finance: stop financing immediately!


2020.05.07 - 15:31


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People - Baghdad  

 

The General Secretariat of the Council of Ministers revealed a decision issued by the resigned government at the end of its work, pending instructions from the new government.  

And the decision, which "people" obtained a copy of (May 7, 2020), issued on May 5, to stop the financing in all its forms by the Ministry of Finance, until the new government studies the issue and takes the appropriate decisions.  

The suspension of funding included the salaries of employees and retirees, as the retirement authority said in a brief statement that the previous cabinet had stopped spending and awaiting an exception from the new government to start paying the retired salaries.  

The head of the authority, Ahmed Abdel-Jalil, said in a statement, "Nass", that the authority is making efforts with the Ministry of Finance and the Prime Minister to obtain an exception for the purpose of disbursing the salaries of retirees, stressing that contacts are being made on this matter in order to obtain approval of the exchange.  

He added, "Iraq, as a country, has not entered in financial revenue due to the Korna pandemic and the collapse of oil prices," explaining that the authority is ready to pay the pensioners ’salaries even on official holidays, once an exception is obtained from the cabinet’s decision.  

While he denied, deducting proportions from the retirees ’salaries or the existence of a tendency to cancel or reduce their salaries.  

MP Mansour Al-Baiji criticized, earlier, the delay in the payment of pensioners ’salaries, demanding that they be paid immediately.  

Al-Baiji surprised in a statement that "people" received a copy of it, (May 7, 2020), "delaying the payment of pensioners' salaries for the month of April until now despite the resounding statements made by the government and the concerned authorities that the salaries of employees and pensioners are insured throughout the current year," wondering about the reason for the late exchange The Roteb.    

He added, "The delay in paying the retirees' salaries is unacceptable and the Minister of Finance should launch them immediately because the delay in launching them is a great injustice and prejudice against a large segment of the Iraqi people who served the country for a long time."    

And between Al-Baiji, "The retired segment is the icon of Iraqi society who served the country for a long period of their lives and with all state institutions. Therefore, the government has a duty to direct them to provide special care for them, not to delay the exchange or cut off part of their pension salaries."    

He continued, "Most of the retirees who served the Iraqi state and after their service ended and entering the legal age for retirement, they went out to suffer from chronic diseases and in need of treatment, which requires expediting the payment of their salaries that are their natural deserves and not from any party, so it must be expedited to disburse them without any delay in valuing them." .   

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Al-Hashemi: Al-Kazemi’s government faces 10 “challenges” .. Most notably, loose weapons and currency printing!

 

2020.05.07 - 12:19

 

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Baghdad - people  

 

On Thursday, political and security expert Hisham al-Hashemi identified the challenges facing the new Prime Minister, Mustafa al-Kazemi, with 10 points.  

Hashemi said in a post, seen by "Nass" (May 7, 2020), that "the new Iraqi government headed by Mustafa Al-Kazemi awaits huge challenges, most notably the fight against the Corona virus, the inventory of loose weapons and the dismantling of its hegemony."  

Hashemi also added, among the challenges, "security, to confront the return of ISIS, the relationship with the United States, the American withdrawal from Iraq and exemptions to buy Iranian energy without sanctions, and the International Monetary Fund loans, as well as the return of popular protests."  

Hashemi continued about other challenges, namely: "double the poverty rates, hold the protesters accountable and early elections, the unvoted budget, the collapse of oil revenues, the printing of currency, the salaries and retirement of employees."  

On Thursday morning, the House of Representatives voted to give confidence to the government of Mustafa al-Kazimi, in a session that saw the presence of 258 deputies.  

Parliament voted during its emergency session, which was followed by "Nass" (7 May 2020), on 14 ministers, while a group of candidates rejected and decided to resolve the file of the Ministries of Oil and Foreign Affairs.      

The list of ministers who won the trust included:   

Nabil Abdel-Sahib, Minister of Global Education and Scientific Research.         

Jum'a stubbornness as Minister of Defense.      

Lieutenant General Othman Al-Ghanmi, Minister of the Interior.      

Khaled Battal, Minister of Planning.      

Ali Abdul Amir Allawi, Minister of Finance.      

Hassan Mohamed Abbas, Minister of Health.      

Nazlin Muhammad, Minister of Housing and Reconstruction.      

Majid Mahdi Ali, Minister of Electricity.      

Nasser Hussein Bandar Hamad, Minister of Transport.      

Adel Hashush, Minister of Labor.      

Adel Hashush, Minister of Labor.      

Manhal Aziz, Minister of Industry.      

Adnan Darjal Mahdi Ali, Minister of Youth.      

Arkan Shihab, Minister of Communications.      

Mahdi Rashid Mahdi Jasim, Minister of Water Resources.      

Ali Hamid Makhlaf, Minister of Education.      

The House of Representatives did not obtain the approval of:       

Nawar Nassif Jassim, Minister of Trade.      

Hisham Saleh Dawood, Minister of Culture.      

Thanaa Hikmat Nasser, Minister of Immigration and Displacement.      

Ismail Abdul-Redha Al-Lami, Minister of Agriculture.      

Abdul Rahman Mustafa, Minister of Justice.      

The vote on candidates for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Oil was also postponed.      

In his first comment after assuming the position of head of the Iraqi government, Al-Kazemi confirmed that he would work to restore the confidence of citizens.      

"Today, the esteemed parliament has given confidence to my government, and I will work closely with the honorable ministerial team to win the trust and support of our people. My gratitude is to all of our support, and my hope is that all political forces come together to face the difficult challenges, sovereignty, security, stability, and prosperity of Iraq, our path," Al-Kazimi said in a brief post. .      

Al-Kazemi confirmed that his government will be a solution government, not a crisis government, while stressing that "the stage is difficult and the challenges are great."  

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The Finance Committee requests Kurdistan employees data and the Erbil Oil Revenue Report

 

2020.05.07 - 11:31

 

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People - Baghdad  

 

The Parliamentary Finance Committee confirmed, on Thursday, that the Kurdish delegation pledged to send data on the numbers of Kurdistan Region employees for verification.  

The head of the committee, Haitham al-Jabouri, said in a statement, which was followed by "Nass", (May 7, 2020), "The Finance Committee asked the Kurdish delegation who visited Baghdad recently with detailed data on the numbers of employees and the audit report on oil revenues."  

He pointed out that "the Kurdish delegation pledged to send the data to the Finance Committee to ensure that there is no duplication of salaries as raised."  

It is mentioned that the President of the Republic, Barham Salih, indicated during his meeting with the Kurdish delegation the necessity of a full commitment to transparency in order to settle financial issues in all parts of Iraq and the Kurdistan region, by relying on the budget law that established a mechanism and framework for preserving rights and duties.  

The head of the Parliamentary Finance Committee, Haitham al-Jubouri, revealed on Friday, the scenarios that the government will resort to to provide employees salaries in the event of the collapse of oil prices, while he warned against the collapse of the Iraqi dinar in the event of "tampering with" the currency reserve in the central bank.  

Al-Jubouri said in statements followed by "Nass" (May 1, 2020), for the "shortest path" program presented by colleague Nabil Jassem, "The world’s need for oil before the Corona crisis is 70 million barrels per day, while the world offers 100 million barrels, there is an increase The supply is estimated at 30 million barrels per day before the arrival of the Corona crisis. "    

Al-Jubouri added, "OPEC controlled 80% of the global oil market, but now it controls only about 25% of the market. Therefore, its measures to stop the collapse of prices are no longer meaningful," noting that "55% of the oil storage capacity" In the world, it was filled with the stop of factories and the large supply. "    

On the concerns of stopping the sale of Iraqi oil, Al-Jubouri said that "96% of Iraq’s financial revenues are from oil, while taxes and customs are zero at the present time as a result of their closure," explaining that "the Iraqi barrel of oil is now sold for less than $ 20, meaning that Iraq He may only get 25% of the revenue in 2019 during this year. "    

And Jubouri said, "Iraq receives its revenue after 60 days of sale, so the state has not yet absorbed the blow of decline," noting that "the recent meetings between the relevant authorities and the Parliamentary Finance Committee ended that what is required to provide salaries and debts that must be paid requires providing At least 72 billion dollars. "    

The Chairman of the Parliamentary Finance Committee pointed out that "Iraq needs $ 7 billion a month as the minimum for securing salaries, while the net sale of oil barrels does not exceed 8 dollars only," explaining that the size of the salaries of employees rose from 40 trillion dinars in the past year to 52 trillion Dinar due to the "unlawful release of contracts and appointments by the government of Adel Abdul Mahdi."    

Haitham al-Jubouri said, "The salaries of employees for the month of May are insured, but there are indications of a significant decrease in revenue during the next two months (June and July)," noting that the Finance Committee has put in place urgent and reformative solutions to ensure the continuation of employee salaries.    

Al-Jubouri revealed that there are 4 urgent solutions to secure a monthly fund of $ 7 billion, which are:    

- Withdrawing the excess liquidity from some banks.  

- Breaking the $ 4.4 billion Iraq deposit related to the purchase of American weapons.    

Borrowing from the International Monetary Fund by $ 2.2 billion.  

- National bonds between the central bank and Iraqi banks can solve 40% of the problem.  

Al-Jubouri said, "These solutions can secure Iraq financially for the next four months," expecting "oil prices to move to more than $ 30 a barrel after Trump's statement and his threat to Saudi Arabia."    

Al-Jubouri stressed that paying the salaries of the employees without borrowing requires selling one barrel of Iraqi oil at $ 71, noting that there are medium-term solutions that may contribute to alleviating the crisis if the government begins it now.    

He explained, that the solutions include "the automation of border border customs, which has an annual revenue of about 9 billion dollars, from which Iraq currently only receives 1.5 billion, as a result of waste, corruption, and the control of factions and influential parties."    

And on the hard currency reserves in the Central Bank of Iraq and the possibility of tampering with it to overcome the crisis, Jubouri said that "Iraq has a reserve of hard currency in the central bank estimated at 81 billion dollars," noting that "the minimum required in the bank's reserves is 52 billion dollars to ensure that the currency does not collapse ".    

Al-Jubouri also stressed that “ministerial orders issued to appoint people after December 31, 2018 are considered invalid due to the lack of legislation in the budget law,” explaining that some suggested reducing employee salaries but the committee did not support that option, without excluding deduction from employee salaries during the months Coming.    

Al-Jubouri pointed out that "the poor planning of the Adel Abdul Mahdi government contributed to the aggravation of the crisis," noting that "many tragedies await the next government team on the economic, health and security levels."   

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Mazhar Saleh: Al-Kazemi’s government will launch the first package to revive the economy


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Baghdad - people  

 

On Thursday, Advisor to the Prime Minister for Financial Affairs, Mazhar Muhammad Saleh, revealed the existence of packages of measures to revitalize the national economy.  

Saleh said in a statement to the official agency, followed by "Nass", (May 7, 2020), that "there are packages of important measures to revitalize the national economy," noting that "the first package of them includes the adoption of small loans for young people on very soft terms, as well as large private loans In the areas of agricultural activity, manufacturing, and services, especially as they are income and revenue generating.  

He explained that "this initiative represents the integration of the monetary and financial policies of Iraq towards building economic stability and strengthening markets in addition to advancing sustainable development paths and raising levels of employment and use and combating recession."  

Saleh added that "the package will go out as a priority to revitalize the agricultural movement in fundamental aspects, including facilitating the acquisition and acquisition of agricultural lands, supporting agricultural production and agricultural technology, and in accordance with the requirements of strengthening Iraq's food security and advancing national agriculture."  

He continued, "The first package will be taken over by the Al-Kazemi government to support the macro economy and the national market and move the state apparatus more efficiently."  

Expectations indicate that Iraq may witness an annual performance that is the worst for the country since the overthrow of Saddam Hussein's regime in 2003, especially since Baghdad is currently considering the possibility of deduction of huge public salaries, in a move that will receive popular rejection and may renew the wave of protests with a new government taking over .  

According to a report published by the French news agency, and followed by "Nass" (May 7, 2020), the GDP of Iraq is expected to decrease by 9.7 percent this year, and poverty rates may also double, according to the expectations of the World Bank, making this the worst annual performance The country since Saddam Hussein was toppled in 2003.    

The second largest producer of OPEC was affected by a double blow, firstly by the collapse of oil prices, and secondly by the Covid-19 pandemic, which dramatically affected its oil revenues.    

And Iraq’s oil revenues last month reached 1.4 billion dollars, less than a third of the four and a half billion that the country needs per month to pay public sector salaries, compensation and government costs.    

That is, the Iraqi government suffers every month from losing $ 3.1 billion in oil revenue.    

In the face of this crisis, officials may put massive payrolls on the deduction list, according to two senior officials involved in discussions to suggest solutions.    

The basis for salaries is more likely to remain the same, and austerity measures will extend to the large "allocations" that made up two-thirds of the $ 36 billion budget for salaries in 2019.    

These allowances include rewards or benefits such as cars and homes, based on factors that include seniority, educational level, children, or informally political and family relationships.    

An Iraqi official says that "the cuts we are studying include reducing the allocations of high-ranking public officials by more than half, the average level by 50 percent, and the low level by about 30 percent."    

The government will also consider freezing recruitment and promotions, cutting military spending, and stopping maintenance of government buildings to save more money.    

The authorities may even print the currency to pay salaries, which will force the central bank to use its foreign reserves of $ 60 billion to support the dinar exchange rate against the dollar.    

These measures are part of the $ 54 billion "emergency financing document", just over a third of the amount budgeted for the 2020 draft budget that parliament has yet to pass.    

"It is the first time that we have had to do something similar."    

" Too little, too late. "  

 And Iraqi economic analyst Ali Mawlawi told France Press that, with the deficit increasing every month, "What kind of measures will the government take now to try to avoid the economic disaster? It is really very little and very late."    

The government pays salaries to four million employees, pensions for three million, and aid for a million others, which means that one out of every five Iraqis receives what can be considered payments from the state.    

Maulvi says that the government of Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi, as its predecessors, has appointed employees to please political allies.    

He adds that "oil prices rose when Abdul-Mahdi took office, which led to a false sense of safety from his government, and expanded in the public sector to the stage of losing control, which led to this serious financial crisis."    

For 2019, the government monitored a 13 percent increase in salary expenses, and jumped 127 percent in pensions, according to a World Bank analysis.    

Late last year, the government employed at least 500,000 people in an effort to appease angry anti-government protesters protesting against unemployment and corruption, which led to salary inflation inflated again by 25 percent.    

Public jobs are inherited from the previous era in Iraq, as university graduates are theoretically employed by a related ministry upon their graduation. But this strategy has overburdened the public sector engulfed by corruption.    

The benefits associated with government positions mean that they are sold for hundreds of thousands of dollars by grade, while the private sector is regrettably unrepentant.    

"This is an economy that does not create jobs," says Wael Mansour, chief economist at the World Bank in Iraq.    

This raises problems in a country with rapid population growth, and is set to increase ten million in the next decade to 50 million.    

"If they really want to make an impact, the only place to do that is by salaries," says Mansour.    

difficult decision  

However, similar austerity measures "could spark more social unrest, with public services already weakening and unemployment rising," according to the World Bank.    

The new Prime Minister, Mustafa Al-Kazemi, had hoped that he would not have to start his mandate with cuts, but fear of public reaction prevented the caretaker government headed by Abdel-Mahdi from implementing the cuts.    

"No one wanted to take responsibility," says a second official involved in developing emergency procedures.    

The same official describes the meetings in which caretakers were more focused on signing last minute contracts that would earn them quick bribes, knowing that their days in government were numbered.    

Given the prospect of a further drop in oil revenues in May with lower prices and demand, things could get worse.    

"If we don't agree on something swift, there will be no money in June. We will have to announce a full government shutdown, and this is a precedent," the official said. 

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      US officials are convinced of the existence of fraud within Iraq, enabling those involved in the sanctions to continue their commercial and financial activities
      During the past two years, the US Treasury Department has continuously announced the announcement, and through official statements issued by it, on the inclusion of a number of Iraqi personalities and companies on the sanctions list, accompanied by convictions of them, related to what it says are crimes and violations in the field of human rights and financial corruption they committed, And also their cooperation with the Lebanese "Hezbollah" and the Iranian Revolutionary Guards. Among the most prominent of these names are the director of the “Islamic Bank of the Country”, the politician Aras Habib, the governors of Salahuddin and Nineveh, Ahmad al-Jubouri and Nawfal Hammadi al-Akoub, the politician Khamis al-Khanjar, the leader of the militia “Asa’ib” Qais al-Khazali and his brother Laith al-Khazali, and a leader in the “Popular Mobilization” Hussein Faleh Lami. This is in addition to the leader of the "Babylonian" militia, Ryan Al-Kildani, the leader of the "Shabak" militia, Waad al-Qud, and the "al-Nujaba" militia, Akram al-Kaabi.
      According to a senior Iraqi official, there are officials in the US Treasury Department convinced of the existence of fraud within Iraq, which enabled those involved in the sanctions, whether Iraqis, Syrians, Lebanese or Iranians, to continue their commercial and financial activities, and to obtain hard currency, which prompted the Americans to include a full paragraph In the second dialogue session, Baghdad calls for reforms to be made. The source pointed out that American officials accuse the government of Adel Abdul Mahdi of not responding to the sanctions, and of allowing many of those listed on its regulations to withdraw funds or transfer funds or carry out sales and purchases through agents and relatives, and with the knowledge of the Central Bank of Iraq and other local banks.
      The Iraqi official also revealed that the Al-Kazemi government will make additional pledges to tighten commitment to US sanctions, and to carry out reforms within the Central Bank of Iraq, and an investigation will be opened with the competent authorities to find out the real reasons behind the failure to implement decisions in this regard may expose Iraq to sanctions. The source acknowledged that there are political and factional influences (armed factions) linked to Iran on the central bank and on other oversight bodies, and that any commitment to the sanctions is considered by the authorities implementing the pressures as labor in favor of the United States.
      Al-Kazemi’s government will make additional pledges to tighten compliance with sanctions, and to carry out reforms within the central bank
      The source emphasized that for these reasons, Al-Kazemi intends to make fundamental changes in the central bank during the coming period.
      For his part, the former official at the Central Bank of Iraq, Mahmoud Dagher, in connection with the "new Arab", stressed his country's commitment to the American sanctions issued against the personalities and companies, stressing that "it is impossible for Iraq not to implement such decisions issued by the American treasury, nor will it risk Not to implement American decisions, as important. Dagher recalled that the Iraqi government "issued a circular to banks under the names of those who were included in the sanctions list, and transfers from them to them were stopped," stressing his country's commitment "to implement such a decision if it was issued against any party or person."
      The former official in the "Central Bank of Iraq" stressed that his country’s failure to implement the US Treasury Department’s decisions constituted an economic risk to Iraq and the Iraqis, which would stop all financial transfers to Iraq, and for this reason the bank is obliged to implement the sanctions issued against the Iraqi personalities, whatever they may be.

      On the other hand, a member of the Security and Defense Committee in the Iraqi Parliament, on the authority of the “Al-Fath” coalition, Karim Alaiwi, said that “his bloc is awaiting a position on the part of Al-Kazemi’s government regarding the rejection of unilateral sanctions against Iraqi personalities and entities.” It has the intention to hold talks with the American side about it, as it is political sanctions, and is not based on any realistic evidence. Aliwi said in an interview with Al-Arabi Al-Jadeed that the Al-Kazemi government should complete this task by rejecting any kind of sanctions that affect any Iraqi figure who is not convicted by the local judiciary, and working to remove names from any American list.

      But one of the members of the negotiating delegation in the first dialogue session, which was held via a television circle last month between American and Iraqi officials, assured Al-Arabi Al-Jadeed that the files of the second session were not definitively determined, and they may be comprehensive due to Al-Kazemi’s presence in Washington and his supposed meetings with senior administration officials. American, but he made it clear that it is primarily about terrorism and strengthening Iraq’s security and military capabilities, the financial and health crises, electricity and strengthening the rule of law, fighting financial corruption and threatening armed groups linked to Iran, and the American military presence. And he considered that the file of Iraq’s commitment to the sanctions imposed on Iran, and on various personalities and parties inside and outside Iraq, would be within the political file that is under discussion with the prime minister.
      Just deputies
      New Arab
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