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Iraq Economic News and Points to Ponder Monday AM 9-18-23

Deputy: The Continued Rise In The Exchange Rate Of The Dollar Against The Dinar Requires Serious Government Measures

Economy  11:16 – 2023-09-18  Member of the Parliamentary Finance Committee, Mustafa Al-Karaawi, confirmed that the continued rise in the exchange rate of the dollar against the dinar requires real government measures.

Al-Karaawi said in a press interview, “The US Treasury Department’s imposition of new sanctions on Iraqi banks means that Iraqi banks have not adhered to the instructions,” warning of “major economic repercussions that the Iraqi financial market will witness, due to the United States imposing sanctions on a number of banks, including a rise in… Dollar exchange rate.

He added, “The rise in the dollar exchange rate will not stop, and there will be a gradual rise every day, and this matter requires a real government stance and measures to address this matter,” noting that “the issue may turn into a monetary crisis like the one that occurred during the past months with the beginning of the formation of the new government.” This matter requires an Iraqi diplomatic movement towards the US Treasury and the US Federal Reserve.”

The representative pointed out that “the Finance Committee will work to host the figures and responsible authorities in the Central Bank to discuss the repercussions of the crisis and to find out what the bank’s measures are to confront the significant rise in the exchange rate in the local market.”

The dollar exchange rates continued to rise on the black market, as the exchange rate reached 158,250 dinars per 100 dollars.

Embezzlement And Manipulation Of Two Billion And 400 Million Dinars

The first  09/18/2023    Baghdad: Rula Watheq  revealed that the Federal Bureau of Financial Supervision revealed that there was tampering with the disbursement documents of an oil company in the amount of two billion and four hundred million dinars, by repeating the disbursement or organizing fake documents during the current year.

An official source at the Bureau told Al-Sabah: Tampering with exchange documents in an oil company amounting to two billion and 400 million dinars was detected during the current year, noting that the Bureau referred the report issued by it during the month of March of the current year regarding the embezzlement of an amount of seven billion dinars in one of the offices. Oil companies during the years 2020 – 2021 to the competent court to take judicial measures against those manipulating public funds.

The Dollar Recorded A New Jump And Touched 160 Thousand In The Local Market

Economy |Today  Baghdad today – Baghdad    Today (September 18, 2023), the dollar exchange rates recorded a new jump, touching 160 thousand in the local markets.

The “Baghdad Today” correspondent said, “The dollar exchange rates rose today, recording 159,000 dinars for every 100 dollars.”

Earlier today, the dollar exchange rate recorded a noticeable increase, as the selling price reached 158,250 dinars per 100 dollars, and the purchase price reached 156,250 dinars per 100 dollars. LINK

Dollar Exchange Rates On Iraqi Stock Exchanges

09-18-2023 | 4,395 views  Alsumaria News – Local  Alsumaria News publishes the exchange rates of the dollar against the Iraqi dinar in Iraqi local markets for Monday, September 18, 2023.

The dollar continues to rise with the opening of the Al-Kifah and Al-Harithiya stock exchanges, recording 157,200 dinars for 100 dollars. As for the selling prices in the exchange shops in the local markets in Baghdad, they stabilized, as the selling price reached 158,250 Iraqi dinars, while the purchasing price reached 156,250 dinars for every 100 dollars.

For more than 7 months, and specifically since the Central Bank began operating the electronic platform and the international financial transfer system ““SWIFT,” the dollar exchange rates in Iraq have not witnessed stability despite the attempts of the government and the Central Bank to control the exchange rate in the parallel (black) markets.

The   Central Bank of Iraq  decided earlier to adjust the exchange rate of the dollar against the Iraqi dinar, as the price of buying the dollar from the Ministry of Finance  reached 1,300 dinars per dollar and selling it at (1,310) dinars per dollar to banks through the electronic platform, and it is sold for (1,320) dinars per dollar. Dollars from banks and non-banking financial institutions to the final beneficiary. LINK

Iraq Allocates More Than 15 Billion Dinars To Build A 50-Km-Long Wall On The Border With Syria

MONDAY, 09-18-2023, AM 9:48  TAYSEER AL-ASADI  Yesterday, the Iraqi Council of Ministers allocated more than 15 billion dinars to construct a cement wall on the Iraqi-Syrian border, to complement the previous wall in the Sharji al-Rawi area, south of Tel Safouk.

The “INA” agency quoted the Iraqi Council of Ministers’ media office as saying in a statement: “In confirmation of the directives of the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces to strengthen the security of the Iraqi borders, the Council of Ministers approved the allocation of the Ministry of Finance, fifteen billion one hundred and forty million and four hundred thousand dinars to the Ministry of Interior from Emergency reserve allocations,

for the construction of a concrete wall on the Iraqi-Syrian border – the sixth region border sector, in continuation of the previous wall from the Sharji Al-Rawi area south of Tal Safuk, passing through Wadi Al-Ajij towards Tarifawi, with a length of 50 km, provided that implementation is done using the public tender method, based on Provisions of Article 6 of the Federal General Budget Law for the three fiscal years.”

Iraq has repeatedly stressed that the system of engineering fortifications on the border with Syria aims to prevent the infiltration of terrorist elements across the international border.

In 2015, it was announced the establishment of the Quartet Information Exchange Center, which includes Syria, Iraq, Russia, and Iran, and its headquarters is in the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, with the aim of fighting the terrorist organization ISIS in Syria and Iraq.

The center works to coordinate the efforts of the four countries in confronting terrorism and has held several meetings since its establishment, the most recent of which was on February 24, where participants discussed security developments in the region.

An Explanation Of Erbil’s “Pleasure” With Baghdad’s Loan.. Kurdistan’s Oil Will Resume Flowing Late Next Month – Urgent

Economy |Today  Baghdad today – Baghdad   The intensity of the exchange of statements between the governments of the Kurdistan Region and Baghdad reached its peak at the beginning of this September, following the repercussions of the events in Kirkuk, which were preceded by a decision by the Federal Court in Baghdad that it was unconstitutional to send money to the Kurdistan Region, igniting a crisis between the two parties.

There were reports that the Prime Minister of the Regional Government, Masrour Barzani, sent a letter to US President Joe Biden in which he requested intervention from Washington regarding the crisis related to monthly funds to Erbil, so that the crisis ended with an agreement announced by Masrour Barzani, who recently visited Baghdad with a Kurdish delegation, to reach an agreement with the Prime Minister.

Muhammad Shiaa Al-Sudani, who put the agreement on the table of the Council of Ministers session yesterday, Sunday (September 17, 2023), and ended with a vote on sending Baghdad three payments in the amount of one trillion and 100 billion dinars, and in the amount of 700 billion dinars for each month.

According to a source in the Ministry of Finance of the regional government who informed “Baghdad Today” that the federal government will send the salaries for the month of September after releasing the salaries of employees in other Iraqi governorates, but employees in the region have not received the salaries for the months of July and August yet.”

Fiscal Deficit

In response to this agreement, economic expert Nabil Al-Marsoumi believes that “the Kurdish welcome to the agreement with Baghdad to lend the region 2.1 trillion dinars to pay the salaries of the region’s employees suggests the imminent export of Kurdistan’s oil via Turkey and no later than the end of next month.”

Al-Marsoumi says in a blog post on his personal account on the Facebook platform, “On the contrary, the region will once again be unable to pay salaries because the loan amount is not sufficient with the region’s other resources, without oil revenues, to pay salaries for only three months, from July to September, and the region will then need… Borrowing another 2.1 trillion from Baghdad to pay employees’ salaries for the last quarter of this year.”

On August 31, 2023, the Kurdistan Region Oil Industry Association said that the closure of the Iraqi oil export pipeline to the Mediterranean coast of Turkey had cost producers and the Iraqi government losses of about 4 billion dollars.

Continuing Losses

According to the association, which includes a group of foreign and local companies working in the field of oil production, losses are expected to continue despite initial talks between the Iraqi and Turkish governments to resolve the problem.

Producers in the region located in northern Iraq were forced to reduce production since Turkey stopped flows through the pipeline.

An international arbitration court ruled that Turkey was obligated to pay compensation to Iraq worth $1.5 billion for unauthorized exports that left the region located in northern Iraq between 2014 and 2018.

The Kurdistan Region Oil Industry Association also announced, on Thursday, that the association’s member companies will not resume production and pumping oil from the region even if the government reaches an agreement with the Turkish authorities.

The association said that it “will not produce oil for export via pipelines until it is clear how international oil companies will be paid for their contractual entitlement to exported oil in the past and in the future.”

The association also called on the oil industries of the Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government to “provide guarantees that fully protect the rights of companies, including financial rights,” stressing that they were “significantly harmed” by the Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government’s violation of the official agreements governing the export of oil and the resulting suspension of exports. It caused “billions” worth of damage to companies, according to its description.

It is noteworthy that the companies’ threats coincide with continuous announcements from the Iraqi and Turkish governments indicating that they are close to signing an agreement guaranteeing the export of oil from the Iraqi Kurdistan region through the port of Ceyhan without problems.

Turkish Advertisement

Turkish Energy Minister Alp Arslan Bayraktar announced on Thursday (September 14, 2023) that the oil pipeline between Iraq and Turkey will be technically ready for operation soon, and will be qualified to transport oil from northern Iraq to the Turkish port of Ceyhan for export, without specifying a specific date. Indicating that the line inspection has been completed.

Bayrakdar said in a press briefing, “As of today, Thursday (September 14), an independent survey company has completed its work and is now preparing the report.”

Turkey stopped flows through the pipeline on March 25 after a ruling in an arbitration case issued by the International Chamber of Commerce ruled Ankara to pay compensation to Baghdad for unauthorized exports by the Kurdistan Regional Government of Iraq between 2014 and 2018.

Turkey then began maintenance work on the pipeline that passes through a seismically active area, which it says was damaged by the earthquake that struck Turkey last February.

Last August, Iraqi Oil Minister Hayan Abdul Ghani agreed with Turkish Minister of Energy and Natural Resources Alp Arslan Bayraktar in Ankara on the importance of resuming the flow of Iraqi Kurdistan oil to Turkey, after the completion of pipeline rehabilitation operations.

$1.47 billion

It is noteworthy that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had held Baghdad responsible for resuming the pumping of Iraqi Kurdistan’s oil, as he announced on July 12, 2023, that the delay in the return of supplies and the payment of compensation was due to the dispute between the central government in Baghdad and the regional government in Erbil.

The Iraqi authorities had filed a lawsuit against Turkey for obtaining crude oil from the Kurdistan region without its approval, which the International Chamber of Commerce relied on in its ruling to stop exports, and ruled to compensate Baghdad about 1.47 billion dollars.

The decision led to the interruption of supplies amounting to about 400,000 barrels per day of crude oil from Kurdistan fields in northern Iraq, in addition to 75,000 barrels from other Iraqi regions heading from Kirkuk to the Turkish port of Ceyhan on the Mediterranean Sea, with a length of 970 kilometers.

Source: “Baghdad Today + Agencies”  LINK


Points to Ponder From “Daily Reflections For Highly Effective People” By Stephen Covey:

Our character – basically – is a composite of our habits —  Because they are consistent – often unconscious patterns – they consistently – daily – express our character and produce our effectiveness……… or ineffectiveness — p. 46

It becomes obvious that if we want to make relatively minor changes in our  lives — we can perhaps appropriately focus on our attitudes and behaviors — But if we want  to make  significant — quantum change – we need  to work on our basic paradigms — p. 31

Change — REAL CHANGE — comes from the inside out — It doesn’t come from hacking at the leaves of attitude and behavior with quick fix personality ethic techniques — it comes from striking at the root — the fabric of our thought – the fundamental – essential paradigms – which give definition to our character and create the  lens through which we see the world — p. 317