Bondlady’s Corner

  In Bondlady’s Corner

Iraq Economic News and Points to Ponder Tuesday AM 12-19-23

Tlm724 Administrator Bondlady’s Corner

Association Of Banks: The Battle With Dollar Speculators Has Reached Its Final Round

Economy    12-15-2023,  Baghdad – IA  The Iraqi Private Banks Association said today, Friday, that the battle with dollar speculators has reached its final round, and

while it praised the Central Bank’s measures to regulate the movement of funds to achieve financial and bank reform, it confirmed that it will contribute to reclassifying banks, increasing their capital and raising the level of services provided. For citizens.

The economic and banking advisor to the association, Samir Al-Nusairi, told the Iraqi News Agency (INA):

“The Central Bank’s measures and efforts that have been made since the beginning of 2023 and with the support of the government have yielded results and begun to give results according to what was lanned, and  the so-called parallel (black) dollar has begun to die and has been besieged.”

Speculators who deal in it to harm the national economy, and currently the battle is with them in the final round.” He added,

“This is what was stated in detailed procedures and administrative, technical and negotiating steps with the US Federal Bank and the US Department of the Treasury and the understandings related to regulating foreign trade financing by approving the opening of accounts for Iraqi banks in American, Chinese, Emirati and Turkish correspondent banks to deal directly with them for foreign transfers in the currencies of these countries, which… It includes the dollar, the euro, the Chinese yuan, the Indian rupee, the Emirati dirham, and the Turkish lira,

leaving the electronic platform in the year 2024, and importing the dollar and foreign currencies into Iraq from Iraqi bank accounts at correspondent banks or abroad. Al-Nusairi confirmed,

“Reaching agreements to open 40 accounts for Iraqi banks in correspondent banks for foreign trade,” noting that  “the Central Bank’s new strategy to reform the banking sector will adopt the reclassification of banks and increase their capital to the ceiling set by the Central Bank in accordance with the specified time frames until the end of 2024,

which will lead to… Raising the capabilities of our banks to provide the best banking products and services to customers,

which will reflect positively on the movement of the economy, investment, development and the transition to comprehensive digital transformation.” He added,

“Since the beginning of the year 2023, financial policies have been reconsidered according to a new vision for banking reform that complies with the requirements of the global financial system, and

a new strategy has begun to be implemented with mechanisms based on studying and diagnosing the causes of the imbalance and determining the road map, steps, and executive procedures that have been and will be applied at the level of the central bank’s departments and banks.” And the bodies supporting banking work and government agencies related to comprehensive economic reform, as

the Central Bank had previously issued new instructions for external transfers for the year 2023 and three procedural packages to facilitate and control the circulation of foreign currency in the monetary and commercial market. Al-Nusairi continued,

“In August of this year, the Central Bank issued its important statement in which it defined its new strategy for organizing the financing of foreign trade according to new foundations that will move Iraq to the stage of regularity in the global financial system, and

in which it clarified the executive procedures to control the stability of the exchange rate, and the most prominent of its contents are:

Adopting the electronic platform exclusively for foreign remittance transactions,

controlling illicit trade through official and unofficial border crossings,

stopping trading and transactions in dollars on the black market,

preventing all websites and media television channels from publishing exchange rates on the black market due to their violation of the law, and  having importers prove that all their imports were made through the platform and at the price.

The Customs Authority and the General Tax Authority implement proposals and treatments for small merchants to enter the platform in accordance with the rules, and

this is consistent with the government’s initiative to launch the national project to control prohibited imports. He continued,

“As we are in the final days of 2023, the Central Bank’s strategy for banking reform in all its axes has become clear for the coming year 2024 and the following years, and

it is an embodiment of what it specified in the road map that it clarified in cooperation with the government in accordance with what was stated in the government’s curriculum in Axis 12 (Financial and Banking Reform) Paragraph 7 thereof, which is concerned with developing and enabling banks to contribute to development and investment. He explained,

“Here we can summarize the Central Bank’s plan, which it is currently working to implement accurately, as follows:-

First – Providing a stable financial system lies in accompanying financial electronic systems.

Second: Commitment to establishing the rules of compliance, risk management, transparency, and soundness of financial operations.

Third – The transition from the cash economy to the digital economy and what is called the fourth revolution and the accompanying measures that achieved a qualitative shift in the dealings between the government and the central bank.

Fourth – Implementing the financial and banking reform plan, which is characterized by international standards that keep pace with global developments in the field of the financial digital economy.

Fifth – Working to strengthen international relations, including establishing a network of relations with foreign correspondent banks.

Sixth – Establishing Riyada Bank in line with the Prime Minister’s initiative and redirecting work on initiatives to finance small and medium enterprises according to specific standards.

Seventh: Preparing and launching a financial inclusion strategy and putting it into effect in coordination with the relevant authorities.

Eighth – Launching the national lending strategy, relying on the banks’ own financial capabilities to attract deposits and invest them in providing the best banking products to customers and contributing to development.    https://www.ina.iq/199327–.html

Iraqi Minister Of Finance: Economic Recovery Is Underway Amid The Return Of Commercial Financing To Normal 

Economy     Iraq     Minister of Finance  2023-12-18 03:04  Shafaq News/ Minister of Finance, Taif Sami Muhammad, said on Monday that economic recovery is underway in the country amid the return of commercial financing to normal.

This came during his participation, along with a delegation of advanced staff in the Ministry of Finance, and a number of representatives of ministries and the Central Bank of Iraq, in the meetings of the International Monetary Fund expert visiting mission held in the Kingdom of Jordan for the period from 14-17/12/2023.

The meeting discussed

priorities for correcting public finances through structural reforms, represented by

encouraging foreign trade payments to commercial banks and

reducing reliance on cash, in addition to

expanding the use of point-of-sale devices and electronic payments, and

accelerating the completion of the restructuring of government banks.

On the other hand, the meeting discussed the

actual expenses and revenues until September 2023, the

expected ones for the end of this year, and in addition to the

spending ceilings for the year 2024,

appointments file contained in Budget Law No. (13) of 2023,

financial reforms,

bank structuring,

customs and tax automation, the

unified treasury account, and the

comprehensive banking system. Implementing the POS electronic payment system for the purpose of maximizing revenues.

Support for funds for which allocations were made in the general budget was also discussed, in addition to

structural reforms to support private sector development,

increase job opportunities,

reforms to the retirement system, the

social protection network,

higher revenues and exports,

higher economic growth,

banking and electricity sector reforms,

strengthening governance and

reducing… From corruption

 

The meeting also touched on the role of the Central Bank of Iraq in tightening monetary policy appropriately with the aim of alleviating inflationary pressures by continuing to enhance liquidity management.

A statement issued by the Iraqi Ministry of Finance stated that  the Central Bank has made good progress in implementing technical assistance recommendations for managing local liquidity and bridging the time gap between auctions of bank instruments to ensure continuity of liquidity absorption. Minister Taif said during the meeting that economic recovery is underway amid the  return of commercial financing to normal and the  large financial expansion,  maintaining economic stability and the  importance of coordination between monetary and financial policy and   ensuring the sustainability of the need to gradually renew financial policy while  maintaining spending on the necessary infrastructure and social spending needs and   controlling… Wage bill and increased non-oil tax revenues.

https://shafaq.com/ar/اقتصـاد/وزير-المالية-العراقية-التعافي-الاقتصادي-جار-وسط-عودة-التمويل-التجاري-الى-طبيعته

French Report: Dollar Restrictions Confuse The Lives Of Iraqis Due To “Monetary Sovereignty”

Economy     Iraq     U.S. dollar     Iraqi dinar     Cash transfers   2023-12-17 07:02  Shafaq News/ A French report highlighted the deficit in Iraqi citizens’ withdrawals of money transferred to them from outside the country, months ago, because it was sent to them in US dollars, after the authorities imposed new restrictions that complicate the use of hard currencies, in their efforts to control a black market for the exchange rate.

This is a measure considered paradoxical in a country rich in oil, which has huge hard currency reserves exceeding one hundred billion.

According to a report published by Agence France-Presse, and seen by Shafaq News Agency,

the emergence of a parallel exchange market, and the authorities’ imposition of restrictions within the framework of strengthening banking supervision in compliance with international rules imposed by Washington, have complicated the daily lives of residents.

The official exchange rate is 1,320 dinars to one dollar,

but among money changers, the price of one dollar is equal to 1,500 dinars and may reach 1,600.

Currency exchange offices have become very cautious with customers, after the arrest of dozens of money changers accused of manipulating prices, according to the report.

The Central Bank of Iraq announced in a previous statement that it had decided, as of January, “to limit all commercial and other transactions to the Iraqi dinar instead of the dollar.” in the country.

“Monetary Sovereignty”

While the dollar can be withdrawn in cash from previously existing deposits in hard currency naturally, starting in 2024, it will become necessary to withdraw every money transfer from abroad in dinars exclusively, and according to the official exchange rate.

The Prime Minister’s Advisor for Financial Affairs, Mazhar Saleh, confirms that  “this is the rule that is part of monetary sovereignty, but there are exceptions,” which especially include embassies.

He adds:    “We are strengthening what is called monetary sovereignty…it is not possible to deal with two currencies within the national economy.”

However, these restrictions raise controversy and hinder the daily life of Iraqis, according to Agence France-Presse.

Direct transfers outside banks have become impossible in dollars, and are limited to dinars at the official rate.

The banking sector in Iraq has also adopted an electronic platform, the aim of which is to monitor the uses of the dollar and tighten control over a thriving informal economy, while tax evasion attracts some importers and traders.

The Prime Minister, Muhammad Shiaa Al-Sudani, acknowledged that with the new measures, the cash supply in hard currency available in the market decreased from “200 to 300 million dollars.” per day to “30, 40 and 50 million dollars.”

Last September, Al-Sudani said that merchants who deal with Iran are forced to turn to the parallel market to obtain currency, given that Iran is a country “that has sanctions and is not allowed to conduct financial transfers.”

At the same time, he confirmed that the central banks in Iraq and Iran are discussing a “mechanism” In order to “regulate trade”, it would “break the back of the parallel market”.

“Suspicious trade”

Late last November, the government announced facilities to encourage importers of cigarettes, cars, gold, and mobile phones to obtain foreign currency through official channels.

As for bilateral exchanges, the authorities encourage banks and importers to use currencies other than the dollar, such as the euro, the UAE dirham, or the Chinese yuan.

The Prime Minister’s advisor, Mazhar Salih, defended the banking restrictions aimed at “verifying these transfers,” with the aim of reassuring “the international financial community, and also for reasons related to Iraqi society: Do these transfers actually go to finance Iraq’s trade?”

Saleh added:   “What is happening has nothing to do with the strength of the Iraqi economy. Iraq today is at the highest levels of foreign reserves in its financial history.” Rather, “structural changes have occurred in issues of dealing with foreign currency.”

He also mentioned that min order to protect the country with a population of 43 million people from inflation, importers have access to the dollar and buy it at the official rate, which is more beneficial.

This concerns especially foodstuffs, medicines and building materials.

Saleh believes that this “creates an atmosphere of stability, which is contrary to the parallel market.”

https://shafaq.com/ar/اقتصـاد/تقرير-فرنسي-قيود-الدولار-تربك-حياة-العراقيين-بسبب-السيادة-النقدية

 

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Provoking Points To Ponder on Money

Money is the wise man’s religion.   – Euripides

Money, it turned out, was exactly like sex; you thought of nothing else if you didn’t have it and thought of other things if you did.  – James Baldwin

A feast is made for laughter, and wine maketh merry: but money answereth all things.  – Bible

Neither a borrower nor a lender be for loan oft loses both itself and friend, and borrowing dulls the edge of husbandry.  – William Shakespeare

Never invest your money in anything that eats or needs repairing.  – Billy Rose

Money is always there but the pockets change; it is not in the same pockets after a change, and that is all there is to say about money.  – Gertrude Stein

Men are more often bribed by their loyalties and ambitions than by money.  Robert H. Jackson

Money dignifies what is frivolous if unpaid for.  – Virginia Woolf

How do you make a million? You start with $900,000.  – Stephen Lewis

When you have told anyone you have left him a legacy, the only decent thing to do is to die at once.- Samuel Butler

He that maketh haste to be rich shall not be innocent.  – Bible

Money is good for bribing yourself through the inconveniences of life.- Gottfried Reinhardt

There’s nothing an economist should fear so much as applause.  – Herbert Marshall

You can’t force anyone to love you or to lend you money.  – Jewish proverb

With money in your pocket, you are wise, and you are handsome, and you sing well too.w4- Jewish proverb

If the rich could hire other people to die for them, the poor would make a wonderful living.- Jewish proverb

The farmer’s way of saving money: to be owed by someone he trusted.  – Hugh MacLennan

Gentlemen prefer bonds.  – Andrew Mellon

When you want really big money, you usually find yourself talking to people who didn’t go to Eton.- Anonymous

A good mind possesses a kingdom: a great fortune is a great slavery.  – Seneca

 

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