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Thursday Evening Iraq Economic News Highlights 8-31-23

Citizens Complain About “Impossible Conditions” Set By Banks To Obtain Dollars

2023-08-31 Shafaq News/ Obtaining the dollar at the official rate has become a haunting issue for citizens, despite the availability of the required conditions.

Duraid Salman, who underwent a liver transplant for his daughter in India, said, “For the second time, he had a medical trip to complete the recovery of his daughter and his donor wife. He went to a Rafidain bank to obtain dollars at the official rate for the purpose of paying the costs of treatment to the hospital instead of buying dollars from the parallel market at high prices.”

He continued, “During his submission of the required documents for him, including an official visa, a travel ticket, and all the required conditions, he was surprised that he was not included in the dollar, justifying that he does not have a residence permit, and it was not mentioned in the ticket at the time of return.”

He pointed out that “residency cannot be granted for such cases, but the patient is granted a visa for a period of 6 months, and the date of return is not determined by the patient, but rather by the hospital upon completion of treatment.”

He asked about “the reasons for the complexity and routine in obtaining the dollar for the real person who needs the dollar in such humanitarian matters,” noting that “the bank’s auditors suffer from excessive crowding and staying under the hot sun to obtain 3 thousand dollars for the traveler.”

He called on “officials to put an end to the suffering of citizens, especially for those who have a patient because he needs treatment and to provide medicine,” noting that “these complications and routine push us to obtain dollars from the parallel market.”  LINK

An Economist Expects The Continuation Of The “Gap” Between The Parallel And Official Dollar Prices

Time: 08/31/2023 Read: 663 times   {Economic: Al Furat News} Economist Nabil Al Marsoumi predicted, today, Thursday, that the gap between the parallel and official dollar prices will continue, pointing out that it may increase due to the release of large amounts of money included in the 2023 budget.

Al-Marsoumi said to {Euphrates News}: “The issue of Iraq’s exit from the dollar crisis is political and continues with the existence of sanctions, and thus it prevents bank transfers and documentary credits. on the expenses of traveling Iraqis.

He added, “More than 3 billion and 410 million dollars, these expenditures are not funded, so that travelers resort to the parallel market, so as long as the sanctions remain in place, the gap will continue and may increase due to the release of large amounts of money included in the 2023 budget.”

From.. Raghad Dahham   LINK

After “Breaking The Local Collar”… What Is The New Economic Vision For Iraq?

Economy     Baghdad today – Baghdad  Today, Thursday (August 31, 2023), economic expert Mahdi Dawai considered Iraq to have succeeded in creating an economic partnership with its regional surroundings, as well as creating “spatial development” that will end many problems.

Dawai said in an interview with “Baghdad Today”, that “the government of Muhammad Shiaa al-Sudani succeeded in creating an economic vision through openness to its regional surroundings,

and it was embodied in multiple steps, the most prominent of which is the development path that has three economic, social and tourism dimensions, starting from the port of Faw to Turkey, and the planned To open up towards other neighboring countries,” considering that “breaking the local cordon towards the regional and global in a country in dire need for the entry of foreign investment and the creation of spatial development that will end many problems.”

He added, “The rapprochement with the Gulf countries is another important step that has economic dimensions, accompanied by balance and careful dealing with the eastern and western camps, with the adoption of a financial and monetary policy aimed at stability despite the crises,” stressing that “the rise in oil prices gave high flexibility to the Iraqi economy, and the possibility of providing financial resources.” To finance investments to enhance the capabilities of the infrastructure, which is the most important in any future investment axes.

He pointed out that “Iraq, with its qualifications, economic wealth and important geographical location, is able to form a compass in the world of economy and international trade within years, if there is the ability, management and planning to proceed with all strategic projects that are a building block in the world of the country’s largest economic change.”

Since assuming the position in October 2022, Prime Minister Muhammad Shia al-Sudani has sought with great enthusiasm to complete the previous steps to complete economic deals, whether with Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia, in addition to the path of development with Turkey.

However, security and political challenges may hinder the possibility of the Sudanese taking any steps beyond signing formal agreements, as it used to happen every time an Iraqi prime minister signed such agreements, according to observers.   LINK

A Parliamentary Committee Determines The Requirements For Approving The Oil And Gas Law

Policy – 08-31-2023 The Oil, Gas and Natural Resources Committee confirmed, on Thursday, that the oil and gas law requires a comprehensive agreement and in-depth discussion by the political parties.

Committee member Sabah Sobhi told the Official Gazette, “The oil and gas law is still in the process of writing its draft, which is the first stage in enacting any law. This law needs a comprehensive political consensus, being a sensitive law that needs deep study and discussion by the political parties.” “.

He added, “The law includes many dimensions, the most important of which is the economic dimension, which is the most important, because the enactment of this law leads to the restructuring of the Iraqi economy, and the second dimension is the legal one, because until now there is a legal vacuum with the existence of a constitutional article related to oil that requires the enactment of a law of its own.”

He continued, “As for the third dimension, it is political, given that the issue of the oil commodity is very important from a political point of view, as it is the main revenue on which the economy and the Iraqi state depend, because 90% of the country’s budget depends on oil imports, so we need to legislate this law, and another after It is the technical dimension because oil is full of techniques from exploration until we reach sale, so we are in the process of enacting an important, complex, sensitive and fateful law for Iraq.[/size]

Iraq Is Advancing Globally And Settling In The Arab World With The Largest Economy In The World In 2023

2023-08-31 Shafaq News / Iraq ranked 49th in the world’s largest economies for the year 2023, after it was ranked 52nd last year, within a list of 190 countries, according to a report by the International Monetary Fund.

According to the report, which was based on GDP data, for each country, and seen by Shafaq News agency, Iraq advanced three ranks globally compared to 2022, while it maintained fourth place among Arab countries for the second year in a row, with a GDP of $267.89 billion.

Saudi Arabia came first in the Arab world and 18th in the world with a gross domestic product of $1.06 trillion, followed by the UAE with a total of $498.98 billion, then Egypt with a total of $387 billion, then Iraq came fourth in 49th place globally, followed by Qatar with an output of $219 billion, then Algeria with $2.6 billion. Kuwait with $164 billion, then Morocco with $138 billion, then Oman with $104 billion, then Jordan with $52 billion, while Tunisia came in tenth place with a GDP of $49 billion.

According to the Fund’s report, “the five largest economies in the world in 2023 were the United States, China, Japan, Germany and India.

The United States maintained its position as the leading global economy and the richest country, retaining its first position with a GDP of $26.85 trillion, followed by China in second place with a GDP of $19.37 trillion, then Japan third with a total of $4.41 trillion, and then Germany in fourth place. With a total of 4.31 trillion dollars, then India is in fifth place, with a total of 3.74 trillion.

The United Kingdom came sixth with a total of $3.16 trillion, France seventh with a total of $2.92 trillion, then Italy came eighth with a total of $2.17 trillion, followed by Canada in ninth place with a total of $2.09 trillion, and Brazil in tenth place with a total of $2.08 trillion.

The International Monetary Fund report indicated that Tuvalu was at the bottom of the ranking table with a total of $7 million, followed by Nauru with an output of $15 million, then Kiribati with a total of $25 million.   LINK

Al-Sudani’s Advisor Tries To Explain The “Huge Figure” Of The World Bank On Iraq’s Debt

Baghdad today – Baghdad  Today, Wednesday (August 30, 2023), the Advisor to the Prime Minister for Financial Affairs, Mazhar Muhammad Salih, stated that Iraq’s debts of more than $150 billion to the World Bank are “exaggerated” and unreal, while he reviewed Iraq’s debts as a whole in an attempt to explain the source of the figure that the bank talked about. international.

Saleh told the official news agency, followed by “Baghdad Today,” that “the issue of the Iraqi public debt requires a professional distinction of its history and details, and not taking its numbers on their minds without a clear logical analysis.

The internal public debt, which is approximately 71 trillion dinars, and which the government banking system still holds Those debts are in the form of government bonds and treasury transfers, when evaluated in foreign currency, it is estimated at about $54 billion, while the external debt payable until the year 2028 is estimated at about $23 billion, and there are debts due after the year 2028, so the external debt becomes about $30 billion.

He added, “There is a debt pending on the 2004 Paris Club agreement, i.e. sovereign debts before 1990 belonging to four Gulf countries and four other countries, which are about 40 billion dollars, and if they are activated, if they are correct (because they are, as is termed economically, reprehensible debts because they financed the Iraqi-Iranian war.”

At that time, if it is correct again, it must be deducted by 80% or more under the Paris Club agreement for the year 2004, to be less than $ 9 billion or less.

And Saleh continued, commenting on what the World Bank mentioned in its new report that Iraq’s debt exceeds 150 billion dollars:  He said, “We do not know the method of calculating the debt in the World Bank report.

Aside from it, for the external debt to reach 50 billion dollars, as an expectation of the total internal public debt early, which was not achieved, and therefore the reading of Iraq’s internal and external debts, according to what was published by the World Bank, came to be about 152 billion dollars,

and this is exaggerated rather than being At about $84 billion (excluding the balance attached to the Paris Club agreement as an abhorrent debt) and what has been published about debt balances is unreal and discretionary.

He pointed out, “Nevertheless, the public debt-to-GDP ratio, even in light of its unjustified inflation, will remain between 54-57% of the estimated GDP for the year 2023, and it is within the current safe economic stability area, which is usually estimated at about 60%.”

And the advisor to the Prime Minister for Financial Affairs warned, “The financial policy in Iraq adopts a highly disciplined system in adjusting the timing of payment of debt dues (annual installments and interest) or when extinguishing the debt once on its annual due dates, and there are fixed and accurately estimated annual allocations that are monitored in the budget.”

The public early to pay debt services and dues, especially Iraq’s foreign debts, and no failure has been recorded in Iraq during a decade and a half, and this is what made Iraq’s credit worthiness high, as Iraq is located within Area B in the global credit rating tables that are evaluated by international credit rating companies. Known and periodically since 2015 until today.

Saleh explained, “The vast majority of internal public debt is in the possession of government financial institutions or the government banking system, which is an (exclusive) internal governmental matter.

There is a strategy in dealing with this debt, especially since the monetary authority currently acquires about 64% of the total internal debt and has the ability to In managing it in coordination with financial policy and with high accuracy, bearing in mind that the banking system annually obtains interest on that debt at a rate of 3%, and it falls within the annual allocations of the general budget.  LINK