KFTA – Frank26 and Clare “News and Views” at KTFA Wednesday 12-20-2023


Clare:  The Iraqi Trade Bank decides to stop working on money transfers, starting next Sunday


The Iraqi Trade Bank decided to stop working on financial transfers, starting next Sunday

In a statement, a copy of which {Al-Furat News} received, the bank explained the reason for stopping work on financial transfers: “For purposes related to the annual inventory, it was decided to stop work on money transfers starting from Sunday, 12/24/2023,” noting that “the last date for receiving financial transfer requests will be on Thursday, 12/21/2023.

He added, “This service will resume work on Wednesday, 01/03/2024.”  LINK


Advisor to the Prime Minister: Iraq today has the highest levels of foreign reserves in its financial history

12/17/2023  Baghda

Advisor to the Prime Minister, Mazhar Saleh, confirmed that Iraq today has the highest levels of foreign reserves in its financial history.

Saleh 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?”

He 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.”  LINK



 Association of Banks: The battle with dollar speculators has reached its final round


 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, with the support of the government, have yielded results and have begun to give results according to what was planned.” The so-called parallel (black) dollar has begun to die, and the speculators who deal with it have been besieged 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 the financing of foreign trade by approving the opening of accounts for Iraqi banks in American, Chinese, Emirati and Turkish correspondent banks to deal directly with them for external transfers in the currencies of these countries, which include the dollar, euro, Chinese yuan, Indian rupee, Emirati dirham and Turkish lira, and leaving the electronic platform in The year is 2024

And the supply of dollars and foreign currencies into Iraq from Iraqi bank accounts at correspondent banks or abroad. 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 and the executive steps and procedures that will be implemented.”

 It has been and will be implemented at the level of the departments of the Central Bank, banks, bodies supporting banking work, and government agencies related to comprehensive economic reform, as the Central Bank has 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 added, “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 move Iraq to the stage of regularity in the global financial system, and in which it explained the executive procedures to control the stability of the exchange rate.” Among its most prominent items: adopting the electronic platform exclusively for foreign transfer 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 importers proving that all Their imports were made through the platform and at the official price, and the Customs Authority and the General Tax Authority implemented proposals and procedures 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, “And we In the last days of 2023, the Central Bank’s strategy for banking reform in all its axes became clear for the coming year 2024 and subsequent 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) and paragraph 7 thereof and special By 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. 

Secondly – Commitment to consolidating the rules of compliance, risk management, transparency and safety of financial operations.

 Thirdly – The transition from the cash economy to the digital economy and what is called the fourth revolution and the accompanying measures that have achieved a shift. Quality of dealings between the government and the central bank. 

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

Fifth – Working to strengthen international relations, including establishing a network 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 in accordance with specific standards.

 Seventh – Preparation Launching a strategy for financial inclusion and putting it into effect in coordination with 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.     LINK

Frank26:  “OF COURSE TOOPIT LOL!!!”………..F26

Will agreements with international banks contribute to solving the monetary problem in Iraq?

12/16/2023 Follow-ups|..

Economic researcher, Ziad Al-Hashemi, confirmed on Friday that the agreements with the banks of the Emirati First Gulf, Turkish Labor, Singaporean Development and others will not end the monetary problem in Iraq.

Al-Hashemi said in a post on the “X” platform followed by “Newspaper”, that “it is expected that these agreements will provide multiple cash alternatives that will help the merchant.” Iraqis can transfer their trade funds quickly and flexibly and reduce dependence on the dollar in foreign transactions.”

He explained, “These agreements will also help reduce the demand for the parallel dollar by attracting the segment of merchants who previously turned to the parallel dollar in search of quick transfers away from the platform, its complications, and delayed approvals.”

He added, “However, the demand for the cash dollar will remain high, and the official dollar will continue to be withdrawn and converted into a parallel dollar by powerful parties that own huge amounts of dinars, and have no relation to regular or official commercial work, and will continue to put pressure on the Iraqi economy to obtain the dollar in all ways and means.”

He continued, “This fact was confirmed by the exchange rates during this period, which maintained their high levels and did not decline despite these agreements and despite hundreds of millions of (imported dollars). This is what makes the exchange rates ready to rise at any moment and with any new event.”

He stated, “Despite the Federal Reserve’s tightenings and the Central Bank’s attempts, it is expected that the problem of the cash dollar, the parallel dollar, and the imbalance in exchange rates will continue with us during the coming year, and we are waiting for more stringent, serious, and courageous solutions to end this problem from its roots.”   LINK



IMF Staff Concludes Staff Visit with Iraq

December 19, 2023

End-of-Mission press releases include statements of IMF staff teams that convey preliminary findings after a visit to a country. The views expressed in this statement are those of the IMF staff and do not necessarily represent the views of the IMF’s Executive Board.

Economic activity is recovering, although oil production cuts are weighing on overall growth, and at the same time inflation has declined.

The large fiscal expansion in the three-year budget law poses significant risks to fiscal and external sustainability over the medium term.

Fiscal prudence and structural reforms are critical to safeguard macroeconomic stability, ensure sustainability, and achieve durable and more inclusive growth.

Washington, DC: A staff team of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) led by Jean-Guillaume Poulain met with the Iraqi authorities in Amman, Jordan during Dec 12-17 to discuss recent economic developments and outlook as well as policy plans.

At the end of the mission, Mr. Poulain issued the following statement:

“Against the background of a large fiscal expansion, non-oil GDP is expected to grow by 5 percent in 2023. Continued budget execution should help sustain strong non-oil growth in 2024. However, lower oil production, following the closure of the Iraq-Turkey pipeline and OPEC+ production cuts, will reduce overall GDP growth in 2023 and 2024.

 Inflation has declined from its January peak and is projected to stabilize in the coming months—helped by the Central Bank of Iraq’s (CBI) tighter monetary policy, passthrough from the exchange rate revaluation, lower international food prices, and normalization of trade finance as compliance to the new anti-money laundering/combating the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) [GM1] framework improved.

“The three-year budget approved in June 2023 marked a shift in Iraq’s budgeting practice, envisaged to improve fiscal planning and continue important development projects over the medium term. Despite a late start of budget implementation, the fiscal balance is expected to shift from a large surplus in 2022 to a deficit in 2023. Staff projects that the deficit would widen further in 2024 reflecting the full year impact of recent measures. The large fiscal expansion, including a substantial increase in public hiring and pensions creates permanent spending that will put pressure on public finances over the medium term.

“Ensuring fiscal sustainability, in context of uncertain outlook for oil prices, requires gradually tightening the fiscal policy stance while safeguarding critical infrastructure and social spending needs. This would require mobilizing additional non-oil revenues, containing the large government wage bill, and reforming the pension system. These measures should be supported by moving toward a more targeted social safety net that better protects the vulnerable.

“The mission welcomed the government’s plans to strengthen public financial management including steps towards the establishment of the Treasury Single Account. In this context, the mission reiterated the importance of adhering to the framework for managing government guarantees.

“The CBI has appropriately tightened its monetary policy, including by increasing its policy rate and reserve requirement. The mission welcomed the progress in strengthening the domestic liquidity management framework and encouraged continued efforts to mop up excess liquidity and develop an interbank market to strengthen monetary policy transmission.

“Structural reforms to spur private sector led economic diversification and job creation remains pivotal for sustainable and inclusive growth. Priorities include creating a level playing field for the private sector through banking and electricity sector reforms, reducing distortions in the labor market, and continuing efforts to enhance governance and reduce corruption.

“The IMF staff team stands ready to support the authorities in their reform efforts and would like to thank them for candid and productive discussions during this mission.”