Iraq Economic News and Points to Ponder Saturday AM 9-16-23

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Iraq Economic News and Points to Ponder Saturday AM 9-16-23

The Dollar Crisis Is “Political”… Who Is Behind It And Who Is The Target?

Baghdad today – Baghdad   The continued manipulation of the dollar exchange rate, and the Iraqi street’s anger at the government, which seeks to control the market at times by pursuing speculators and at other times by overthrowing smugglers, but “blame” is still following the government of Prime Minister Muhammad Shiaa Al-Sudani. “Baghdad Al-Youm” opened the file of the rise in dollar exchange rates to stop at Causes and targets of the crisis.

Today, Saturday (September 16, 2023), the dollar exchange rates recorded a new high, as the selling price reached 157,000 dinars per 100 dollars, while the purchase price reached 155,000 dinars per 100 dollars.

The Crisis And Its Causes

Political analyst Kazem Al-Hajj confirms today, Saturday (September 16, 2023), that the continuation of the dollar crisis in Iraq is “political,” among the reasons behind it.

Al-Hajj told “Baghdad Today” that “it is beyond doubt that the dollar crisis in Iraq that has been going on for months is political, and its aim is to target Prime Minister Muhammad Shiaa al-Sudani and his government.”

He explains that “this targeting is behind the United States of America and internal political parties that are manipulating the market .  ”

He stated that “the political targeting of the Sudanese and his government through the dollar crisis is very clear, especially after the Prime Minister succeeded in many service files.”

Al-Hajj adds, “There are those who do not want that success by inflaming the economic situation, which has a direct impact on the citizen.”

New Sanctions Loom On The Horizon

On a related level, a senior official at the US Treasury Department says that the Central Bank of Iraq must address the ongoing risks resulting from the misuse of the dollar in Iraqi commercial banks in order to avoid imposing new punitive measures targeting the financial sector in the country, pointing to acts of fraud, money laundering, and Iran’s evasion of sanctions .

In July, the United States prevented 14 Iraqi banks from conducting transactions in dollars as part of a broader campaign against the illegal use of the American currency .

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity to Reuters, stated that there are still other Iraqi banks operating with risks that “must be addressed” despite the campaign.

 Source: Baghdad Al-Youm + agencies    LINK

An American Threat Related To The Price Of The Dollar In Iraq And The Million Jobs Provided By Tehran.. What Is The Relationship Between Travelers?

Economy | Baghdad today – Baghdad   For more than nine months, and specifically since the Central Bank began operating the electronic platform and 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 exchange rate in the parallel markets is still recording a significant increase compared to the official rate, as the capital, Baghdad, recorded 156 thousand Iraqi dinars for every 100 US dollars, while the official exchange rate is 1,320 dinars to the dollar.

Economist Nabil Al-Marsoumi said today, Saturday (September 16, 2023), that the visit of US Assistant Secretary of the Treasury Elizabeth Rosenberg to Baghdad was not only related to assisting the Central Bank of Iraq in its efforts to achieve exchange rate stability, but rather the threat of additional sanctions on the Iraqi banking system in If dollar smuggling operations continue.

Al-Marsawi explained in a blog post published on his personal account on the Facebook platform and followed by “Baghdad Today”, that “despite the reforms carried out by the Central Bank to improve banks’ compliance to deal with the requirements of the electronic platform in the Central Bank of Iraq and the US Federal Bank, the results of which were that the majority dealt with it, Which led to a significant increase in the Central Bank’s sales, which averaged about $200 million per day.

However, the gap began to widen between the official and parallel prices of the dinar against the dollar, as the gap between them reached 20%, which is much larger than the recognized global levels of about 2%. Just”.

 Iraqis in Iran

He continued, “The gap is linked to two important reasons: the first is the prevention of financial transfers through banking channels to countries sanctioned by the United States, especially Iran, which led to financing trade with them by purchasing dollars from the parallel market and then smuggling it to Iran, and the second: is the large demand from travelers.

” Iraqis go to Iran for dollars from the parallel market, because the instructions of the Central Bank do not allow them to buy dollars at the official price, which is a large demand, because Iraqi travelers to Iran constitute 55% of the total foreign tourists in Iran, and Iraqis have spent about 3.410 billion dollars in 2022 in Iran.” https://baghdadtoday.news/uploads/posts/2023-09/20181107_023515-849.jpg

Al-Marsoumi continued, “Iranian exports of non-oil goods to Iraq amounted to $10.3 billion in 2022, or about 20% of Iran’s total non-oil exports in 2022, as Iran currently supplies 8.2% of Iraq’s needs in the machinery sector, and 26.7% in the field of agriculture.” Industry and foodstuffs, 18.9% of the country’s mineral needs, 55% of building materials, 48% of refinery products, and 28% of petrochemical products. The majority of goods that Iran exports to Iraq are among the goods that lead to job creation and have high added value.”

 A Million Professions

The economic expert added, “Studies indicate that more than a million jobs are provided by the Iranian export sector to Iraq, and therefore the gap between the official and parallel prices of the dinar against the dollar cannot be reduced or neutralized by canceling the US sanctions on Iran so that Iraq’s imports from it can be financed through… Banks, or by cutting off Iraq’s imports from Iran and preventing Iraqis from traveling to it, which is what the United States seeks as a strategic goal in order to strangle Iran economically, and it is a goal fraught with risks due to the great economic importance of Iraq in the Iranian economic strategy.”

On Friday (September 15, 2023), the US Treasury Department called for the need to improve the financial sector in Iraq and limit the financing of terrorism.

The US Treasury said in a statement that it agreed with Iraq to work to improve the financial sector to prevent fraud, sanctions evasion, terrorist financing, and other illegal activities.

On September 12 and 13, the US Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorist Financing and Financial Crimes, Elizabeth Rosenberg, met with the Prime Minister, the Central Bank of Iraq, and representatives of Iraqi private sector banks in Baghdad.

The statement said, “The two sides agreed that there are opportunities and challenges to improve the financial sector in Iraq, and to work together towards meaningful and sustainable reforms, to bring Iraq to international standards and prevent fraud, sanctions evasion, terrorist financing, and other illegal activities.”

 New Penalties

In parallel with the US official’s visit to Baghdad, a senior US Treasury official said that the Central Bank of Iraq must address the ongoing risks resulting from the misuse of the dollar in Iraqi commercial banks in order to avoid imposing new punitive measures targeting the financial sector in the country, pointing to acts of fraud, money laundering, and Iranian evasion. Of penalties.

In July, the United States prevented 14 Iraqi banks from conducting transactions in dollars as part of a broader campaign against the illegal use of the American currency.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity to Reuters, stated that there are still other Iraqi banks operating with risks that “must be addressed” despite the campaign.

With reserves of more than $100 billion in the United States, Iraq relies heavily on Washington’s good faith to ensure that its oil revenues and funds are not subject to US sanctions.

An American threat related to the price of the dollar in Iraq and the million jobs provided by Tehra

Illegal Activity

The official added that the measure, which his country took in July, was based on clear indications of illegal financial activity. He explained that the alleged crimes being considered by the Treasury Department include acts of money laundering, bribery, extortion, embezzlement and fraud.

“I choose to focus on banks that still have access and where I see continued risks,” the official told Reuters in Baghdad.

He added, “It would be great if the central bank seized the opportunity to address the matter directly, which might negate the need (in the United States) to take further measures.”

The official stated that the government of Iraqi Prime Minister Muhammad Shia al-Sudani, who was appointed in October 2022, had been cooperative and had made “progress,” something that “was not necessarily the case” 10 to 15 years ago.

The US Treasury Department official said that despite this, there are still “special interests who feel comfortable with the current situation and may raise concerns in the event of change,” but he did not reveal the identity of these stakeholders.   LINK

A New Reason For The Rise In The Dollar Exchange Rate In Iraq – Urgent

Sweeteners | Baghdad today – Baghdad   Today, Saturday (September 16, 2023), expert in financial and economic affairs, Rashid Al-Saadi, revealed the reason for the rise in the dollar exchange rate in the local market.

Al-Saadi told “Baghdad Today”, “The reason for the rise in the dollar exchange rate is the blocking of (50) banking companies from dealing in the dollar, and this greatly affected the supply of the dollar in the local market, which led to its rise.”

He stated that “the blocking of these companies was carried out by the Central Bank, due to manipulation of the dollar share of these ATMs allocated to travelers according to the share approved by the Central Bank, and according to the information that reached us from the Central Bank of Iraq, the problem of these ATMs will be solved, which leads to… The dollar was reduced again in the local market. LINK

The Dollar Continues To Fly High In The Markets Of Baghdad And Kurdistan

2023-09-16 02:15  Shafaq News/ The exchange rates of the US dollar against the Iraqi dinar continue to rise, recording new numbers, today, Saturday, in the markets of the capital, Baghdad, and in Erbil, the capital of the Kurdistan Region.

Shafaq News Agency correspondent said that dollar prices rose with the opening of the Al-Kifah and Al-Harithiya stock exchanges in Baghdad, recording 155,800 dinars against 100 dollars, while selling prices last Thursday recorded 155,600 dinars.

Our correspondent indicated that selling prices in exchange shops in local markets in Baghdad rose, as the selling price reached 157,000 Iraqi dinars, while the purchasing price reached 154,000 dinars for every 100 dollars.

As for Erbil, the stock market does not trade on official holidays, but the dollar recorded an increase in exchange shops, where the selling price reached 156,050 dinars, and the purchase price was 155,900 dinars for every 100 dollars. LINK

Points to Ponder on Wealth:

There is a burden of care in getting riches; fear in keeping them; temptation in using them; guilt is abusing them; sorrow in losing them; and a burden of account at last to be given concerning them. —
M Henry

The acquisition of wealth is a work of  great labor; its possession a source of continual fear; it loss, of excessive grief. — 
From the Latin 

Agur said, “Give me neither poverty nor riches”; and this will ever be the prayer of the wise. Our incomes should be like our shoes: if too small, they will gall and pinch us, but if too large, they will cause us to stumble  and to trip. But wealth, after all, is a relative thing, since he that has little, and wants less, is richer than he that has much, but wants more. True contentment depends not upon what we have; a tub was large enough for Diogenes, but a world was too little for Alexander. — 
Colton 

Our wealth is often a snare to ourselves, and always a temptation to others. —
 Colton

Men pursue riches under the idea that their possession will set them at ease and above the world.  But the law of association often makes those who begin by loving gold as a servant, finish by becoming its slaves; and independence without wealth is at least as common as wealth without independence. —
 Colton

In proportion as nations become more corrupt, more disgrace will attach to poverty and more respect to wealth. — Colton

The larger the income, the harder it is to live within it.
— Whately