Bondlady’s Corner – Iraq Economic News and Points to Ponder Wednesday AM 11-22-23


Iraq Economic News and Points to Ponder Wednesday AM 11-22-23

Tlm724 Administrator Bondlady’s Corner

Association Of Banks: The Dollar Exchange Rate In The Parallel Market Will Decrease After The Government’s Measures

Economy| 11/21/2023   Mawazine News – Baghdad   Today, Tuesday, the Iraqi Private Banks Association expressed its support for government efforts aimed at reducing the dollar exchange rate in the parallel market, while noting that

Prime Minister Muhammad Shiaa Al-Sudani’s movement to support the private sector represents the beginning of reforming the Iraqi economy.

The head of the association, Wadih Al-Handal, said,  “The recent measures of the Central Bank of Iraq and the government, regarding facilitating trade financing using new currencies, represented by the euro, the dirham, the Chinese yuan, and the Indian rupee, are a step that contributes to reducing the exchange rate of the dollar in the parallel market,” noting that

“regulating trade financing “What the government and the central bank are doing by introducing other goods to the platform will lead to an increase in trade financing.”  He stressed that

“private banks are taking great steps in expanding international relations with international banks, which facilitates the financing of Iraqi trade with countries around the world,” explaining that

 “the Prime Minister’s great support for the private sector is considered the beginning of reforming the Iraqi economy, especially since the private sector is an important partner.” To the government, in providing services and jobs and reducing poverty.”

Complete Decisions Of The Council Of Ministers Session

 Political     Yesterday, 19:31 Baghdad – IA  Today, Tuesday, the Council of Ministers issued a number of new decisions during its 47th session, including facilitating importers of goods (gold, cars, mobile phones, cigarettes) from benefiting from the services of the foreign banking money transfer platform,  and forming a committee to review procedures for unifying customs policy at all ports.

Approving the recommendation of the Ministerial Council for Energy regarding the Iraqi-Saudi electrical interconnection.

The Prime Minister’s Media Office said in a statement received by the Iraqi News Agency (INA):

“Prime Minister Muhammad Shia’ al-Sudani chaired, today, the forty-seventh regular session of the Council of Ministers, during which developments in the general situation throughout the country were discussed, and the progress of implementing the program was discussed.” Government, with all its basic axes and objectives, as well as deliberating on the topics on the agenda and taking the necessary decisions regarding them.”

At the beginning of the session, the Prime Minister offered “his condolences over the tragic traffic accident, which claimed the lives of a number of members of the educational staff of male and female teachers at Al-Ibrahimi School in the Safwan district of Basra Governorate, which witnessed the death of (ten) educational staff and (three) children,” directing, “ “Sending a delegation to provide all possible assistance, assistance and support to the families of the grieving victims, and to follow up on their needs.”

In the field of regulating trade and the importation of some materials and goods, which some merchants are forced to finance from the unofficial market for foreign currency, and the negative repercussions of that financing on the exchange rate, the

Council of Ministers has taken a number of decisions and measures aimed at facilitating the benefit of importers of commodities (gold, Cars, mobile phones, cigarettes) are among the services of the external banking money transfer platform,

which makes it easier for importers of these goods to obtain financing in foreign currency at the official exchange rate and spares them the need to resort to buying foreign currency from the unofficial market.

This will reflect positively on reducing the price of foreign currency in the informal market, as trade in the aforementioned materials constitutes a large part of the demands for foreign currency in the informal market, as

those decisions included reducing customs duties on containers and another reduction related to cigarette import duties and approving certificates. Origin issued by the Chambers of Commerce of the exporting countries.

These decisions also included simplifying the procedures for importing gold through air ports and with 24-hour service.

The Council of Ministers continued to consider the topics of the session. On the path of economic reform, which falls within the government’s priorities, the Council of Ministers decided to form a committee headed by the Minister of Planning, and the membership of the Ministers of Interior, Construction, Housing, Higher Education, Scientific Research, and Justice, the Ministers of Interior and Finance in the Kurdistan Regional Government of Iraq, and the Secretary-General of the Council of Ministers. Ministers, Head of the Legal Department in the Council of Ministers, Director General of Customs, Head of the Border Ports Authority, and Director General of Taxes;

It undertakes the following tasks:

– Reviewing the procedures for unifying customs policy at all border, land and sea ports and airports, and

proposing the necessary decisions to implement what was stated in the ministerial platform in this regard.

– Developing a comprehensive and unified vision for implementing customs policies, product protection laws and decisions in this regard.

– Reviewing the mechanisms for implementing the Border Ports Authority Law No. (30 of 2016), and its amendments, and proposing the necessary treatments to enable the Authority and the concerned authorities to perform their duties, and that the committee should complete its work within a month, and it may seek the assistance of whomever it desires from the specialists.

  Within the framework of continued support for the agricultural sector in accordance with what was stated in the government program, the Council of Ministers approved the recommendation of the Ministerial Council for the Economy (230308 Q) according to the following:

1. Authorizing the Mesopotamian General Seed Company and the Iraqi Seed Production Company to contract with licensed private sector laboratories (yellow corn milling and drying laboratories), as an exception to the contracting methods in the instructions for implementing government contracts (2 of 2014).

2. Using the Ministry of Defense airports as spaces for receiving ears of yellow corn, under the management and supervision of the Ministry of Agriculture.

3. Allocating (150) billion dinars in addition to the remaining amounts of the amounts previously allocated to purchase ears of yellow corn for the season (2023-2024).

4. Approving a price of (380) thousand dinars to purchase one ton of yellow corn ears.

5. Approval of a price of (435) thousand dinars for the sale of one ton of yellow corn grains.

Provided that the Ministry of Agriculture initially delivers the Ministry of Finance’s share (70%) of the proceeds from the sale of yellow corn for the season (2022-2023), and adheres to the text of Article (44) of the Federal General Budget Law of the Republic of Iraq, for the fiscal years (2023-2024-2025), For future seasons.

In the same file, it was decided to amend Cabinet Resolution 248 of 2022, as follows:

– Approval of the establishment of grain marketing centers (silo) in Wasit and Kirkuk governorates; To increase the storage capacity from the revenues of the General Company for Grain Trade.

In the oil sector, the recommendation of the Ministerial Council for the Economy (230270 Q) was approved, which includes approval of what was stated in the letter of the Ministry of Oil regarding correcting Council of Ministers Resolution (23068 of 2023), and Paragraph (5) of Council of Ministers Resolution (23188 of 2023). Concerning the pricing of petroleum products.

Also in the oil file, the Council of Ministers approved the following:

1- Enforcement of Cabinet Resolutions (100 and 189 of 2022) to be implemented by the Ministry of Oil, according to its letter dated October 16, 2023.

2- Amending the Council of Ministers’ Resolution (23 of 2022), allowing the Petroleum Products Distribution Company to bear the amount of taxes that will result from the contract in question, and then later, after determining its amount and applying the description of (government debt to it), the issue will be presented to the Council of Ministers, in accordance with its powers. By waiver, cancellation or postponement stipulated in the amended Federal Financial Management Law (6 of 2019).

As part of the government’s efforts to develop the gas sector and invest it in an optimal way, the Council of Ministers approved the recommendation of the Ministerial Council for Energy (23097 of 2023) regarding the tender to modernize the gas desalination plant, and establish a nitrogen unit and facilities for compressing and drying gas from the West Qurna/2 field, according to the following:

Approval of the tender related to the modernization of the gas desalination plant, and the establishment of a nitrogen unit and gas compression and drying facilities, for the West Qurna/2 field, under the custody of the Italian company (SICIM SpA), for a total amount of (619) million dollars, from Italian origin, with an implementation period of (990 days).

The Council of Ministers also approved the recommendation of the Ministerial Council for Energy (23093 of 2023) regarding the Ibn Omar field gas investment project, according to the following:

1. Recommendation to the Council of Ministers to exclude a gas investment project (Bin Omar Field) from Council of Ministers Resolution (245 of 2019), amended by Council of Ministers Resolution (23374) of 2023, regarding the announcement of investment projects exclusively, through the National Investment Authority.

2. Guarantee the payment of funds through the Ministry of Finance (payment guarantee), determined by the Ministry of Oil from November 21, 2023, in light of the annual budget allocations.

3. Financial payment of invoices for all dues by means of crude oil, only through the Oil Marketing Company (SOMO), is an exception to the instructions to facilitate budget implementation.

In continuation of the government’s efforts to develop the electricity sector and address its crises, the Council of Ministers approved the recommendation of the Ministerial Council for Energy (23091 of 2023) regarding the Iraqi-Saudi electrical interconnection project, according to the following:

1. Referring the implementation of consulting work for the Iraqi-Saudi electrical interconnection project to Terta Tech for obtaining the highest technical and financial evaluation score, at a total cost of (1,088,652) dollars, only one million and eighty-eight thousand six hundred and fifty-two dollars, in six months.

2. Authorizing the Ministry of Electricity to sign the tripartite contract within the operational budget allocations, as an exception to the instructions for implementing government contracts (2 of 2014).

Based on the directives of the Prime Minister, to support the sports sector with various sporting events, the Council of Ministers agreed to allocate an amount of 923 million dinars, from the total budget allocated for the Asian Cup of Archery and Arrow Championship/first stage, which will be held in the capital, Baghdad, for the period from 20-25. February 2024, in order to be at the appropriate level and comply with the conditions of the International Federation of Bow and Arrow, according to the letter of the Ministry of Youth and Sports dated November 19, 2023.

In the context of reducing the spread of the drug phenomenon and mitigating its effects, the Council of Ministers approved the allocation of ten billion dinars by the Ministry of Finance to the Ministry of Interior/General Directorate of Narcotics and Psychotropic Substances Affairs.

To maintain and renovate forced drug rehabilitation centers, the amount is allocated from the emergency reserve, based on the provisions of the Federal General Budget Law of the Republic of Iraq, for the three fiscal years.

In the military industrialization file, the Council of Ministers approved the handover of all iron waste, which includes weapons, military equipment, military waste, and colored metals (copper, lead, aluminum) seized from the security services, to the Military Industrialization Authority, after the ruling on it gained a final degree of approval. Competent courts.

The Council also agreed to include the Military Industrialization Authority with the provisions of Customs Law No. 23 of 1984, as amended, provided that the final beneficiary of the goods imported from the aforementioned Authority is the Armed Forces and the Internal Security Forces.–.html

Experts: The Central Bank’s actions need media promotion

Economic 11/20/2023    Baghdad: Shukran Al-Fatlawi  Financial and economic experts called for the need to intensify the promotion of the new mechanisms adopted by the Central Bank, including (Visa Direct) to assist citizens and merchants with the financial transfer process, in addition to developing more serious solutions to reduce the exchange rate in the parallel market by regulating banking business.

Economist Dr. Mustafa Hantoush told “Al-Sabah”:

The recently launched “Visa Direct” service did not gain public support in terms of financial transfers, as it is not known yet, even though the Central Bank and the competent authorities have begun the process of focusing on this. Mechanism.

He explained that the matter is not bad in terms of the transfer amount and the mechanism used, indicating that daily transfers may reach approximately three thousand dollars via the “Visa” issued by the banks.

Hantoush added that the transferred amount, although small, is suitable for small merchants, stressing that  this process is subject to compliance and money laundering standards by knowing the reasons for the transfer and who is entitled to it, and this service is easier than going to banking companies, (Zain Cash) or (Western Union).

He pointed out that this service is easy in terms of transfer, wondering at the same time about the possibility of transferring the Iraqi dinar to the Emirates or Turkey, and whether the withdrawals are in the Emirati dirham, the Turkish lira, or the dollar, since the basis of the problem is the smuggling of the dollar to the banned countries. 

He noted that  this issue may contribute to somewhat balancing the exchange rate or decreasing it slightly, but it does not contribute to solving the problem, due to the need for more serious steps, including a platform for selling the dollar and stopping smuggling.  Hantoush pointed out that

the First Bank of Iraq, which follows this mechanism, is specialized in banking operations via telephone and Internet means, and

it was implemented in the year 2020 and provided a set of services that did not reach the required level and circulation among the banking public due to the weakness of the marketing process.

For his part, Imad Al-Muhammadawi, who is interested in economic affairs, said during his interview with “Al-Sabah” that the (Visa Direct) service It works to facilitate the movement of money globally, explaining that the country is far behind in this aspect.

He stated that what the Central Bank did in this regard was an attempt to control the dollar, pointing out the need for solid and well-known banks to adopt this mechanism to prevent manipulation.

It is noteworthy that the advisor to the Prime Minister, Fadi Al-Shammari, praised the (Visa Direct) service for transferring money abroad and considered it a successful step to facilitate the work of small merchants, stressing that

it contributes to reducing the exchange rate in the parallel market and

its procedures take only 5 minutes,

 expressing his hope that the citizen will interact with this. Banking service that cuts off black market speculators.

To read more current and reliable Iraqi news please visit BondLady’s Corner:

 Provoking Points to Ponder  on Feelings – Sincerity – Slander

Our feelings were given us to excite to action, and when they end in themselves, they are cherished to no good purpose — Sanford

Strong feelings do not necessarily make a strong character — The strength of a man is to be measured by the power of the feelings he subdues – not by the power of those which subdued him — Richter

Cultivate consideration for the feelings of other people if you want not have your own injured — Those who complain the most of ill-usage are those who abuse others the oftenest – Richter

The heart that is soonest to awake to the flower is always the first to be touched by the thorns — Moore

Thought is deeper than all speech; feeling deeper than all thought; soul to souls can never teach what unto themselves was taught — Cranch 

Continued ………………………… More to come