KFTA – Some “Monday Iraq News” Posted by Clare at KTFA 11-13-2023

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Clare:  Iraq plans to “neglect the US dollar” and Parliament proposes “diversifying foreign currency baskets”

11/13/2023   Baghdad 

The House of Representatives Finance Committee said today, Monday (November 13, 2023), that there is a necessary and important need to diversify the basket of foreign currencies in Iraq and not rely on the US dollar in commercial transactions.

Committee member Moin Al-Kazemi told “Baghdad Today” that “the basket of foreign currencies in Iraq must be diversified and not relied on the dollar in commercial transactions, whether external or even internal, as this reduces American dominance over the Iraqi economy.”

He added, “The Iraqi economic ground is ready and prepared to strengthen banks in various foreign currencies and not be limited to the US dollar, and there is a real trend by the monetary authority in this matter, and the coming days will witness various commercial transactions through the UAE dirham as well as the Chinese yuan and other currencies, and this will reduce demand.” On the dollar, and it will have an impact on reducing the dollar exchange rate in the parallel market.”

Last Saturday (November 11, 2023), a government source in Iraq said that officials from the Central Bank of Iraq held “intensive meetings” with American officials in Abu Dhabi in recent days to discuss external transfers to cover imports.

The source added, according to what was reported by the “official agency,” that “Iraq has strengthened its assets denominated in the yuan through the Singapore Development Bank to finance Iraqi trade and imports with China by about 12 billion dollars annually.”

The source stated that the oil-exporting country also moved to strengthen its assets in UAE dirhams and is negotiating to increase its assets denominated in euros to finance trade with the European Union, according to what was reported by Iraqi news agency “Inaa.”

The source added that negotiations with the American side reached a set of decisions and mechanisms that contribute to facilitating procedures for foreign transfers related to imports through the foreign currency sales window.

He added, “It was agreed to enhance the advance balance of five Iraqi banks in their dollar accounts with Jordanian banks and transfers via JP Morgan Bank,” noting that “the problems related to the rejected transfers were resolved, and it was agreed that the Rejection of transfers should be based on strong reasons.”

He continued: “There were also other meetings that brought together one of the Emirati banks, the Central Bank of Iraq, and the American side, to implement the mechanism for enhancing balances in the Emirati dirham for Iraqi banks,” indicating that “things are going well in this aspect, as all technical details related to the issue have been resolved, and it is expected to begin.” The mechanism for enhancing balances in UAE dirhams during the next few days.”

He stressed that “there are serious negotiations that have reached their final stages to enhance the balances of some Iraqi banks in euros with UBAF Bank to finance trade with the European Union,” noting “an increase in the number of banks whose balances in Chinese yuan are being enhanced through the Singapore Development Bank.”

The source also reported that bank accounts had begun to be opened in Indian rupees for a number of Iraqi banks at the same correspondent, the Singapore Development Bank (New Delhi branch), and operations to enhance the balance of two Iraqi banks had actually taken place as a first stage, and it is expected that this mechanism will contribute to financing Iraq’s imports from India, especially medicines and materials. Food, which is estimated at about $3 billion. LINK

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Clare:  Al-Sudani and Zidane discuss judicial efforts to deter dollar speculators

11/13/2023

Prime Minister Muhammad Shia al-Sudani and the head of the Iraqi Judicial Council, Faiq Zaidan, discussed on Sunday the judiciary’s efforts to hold manipulators and hard currency speculators accountable.

This came during a meeting between Al-Sudani and Zidane, according to a statement received by Shafaq News Agency, during which a number of files and judicial procedures taken were discussed. For the rule of law and to enhance security and stability in the country.

The two sides discussed the importance of strengthening the efforts made by the Iraqi judiciary in holding accountable those who manipulate the people’s livelihood and foreign currency speculators. With the aim of destabilizing the market, affecting the living conditions of citizens, and disrupting government plans to achieve economic and financial reform.  LINK

Clare:  Al-Basri: We have complete information about exchange rate speculators and we arrested 22 accused of corruption

11/13/2023   Baghdad

The head of the supporting team of the Supreme Anti-Corruption Commission, Abu Ali Al-Basri, revealed that large files had been opened, and while he announced the arrest of 22 accused, he determined the fate of those manipulating the dollar exchange rates .

Al-Basri said in an interview with the official news agency, viewed by Al-Iqtisad News, that “the Anti-Corruption Committee has large operations in the governorates of Baghdad, Basra, Salah al-Din, and Anbar, as well as other operations in various places. ”

He pointed out that “the committee’s work continues against those accused in corruption cases and was recently able to arrest 22 involved,” noting that “the Anti-Corruption Committee is now carrying out major operations, some of which have targeted people who had red lines on them. “

Al-Basri pointed out that “the Anti-Corruption Committee will not compliment anyone and has no red lines for anyone,” noting that “some files related to corruption need a detailed study, and the committee has opened many files related to previous contracts concluded in state institutions. ”

He continued, “The Supreme Anti-Corruption Committee also opened the file of financial inflation and it affected large people,” stressing that “there is coordination with Interpol regarding those wanted in corruption cases, and this includes even dual nationals. “

Al-Basri continued, “The competent authorities have moved to a new stage in the file of combating corruption, preserving public money, returning stolen funds, and preventing any new transgression .”

He stated that “the government is serious about combating corruption and has modern treatment methods, including automating state institutions .”

Al-Basri explained that “the Supreme Committee has complete information about speculators at the exchange rate, and it will reach them, and no one will protect them,” pointing out that “merchants who manipulate the exchange rate will be deprived of obtaining the dollar through the electronic platform of the Central Bank, and there is joint work and effort undertaken by it.” The various state agencies, starting with the supporting team, the various agencies, the judiciary, and the Integrity Commission .”

He stated that “there is a major campaign to monitor the market and illegal sales, and the Anand Agency was able to arrest major figures who were involved,” pointing out that “the process of obtaining the dollar and foreign trade has exceeded 90 percent through the electronic platform and that things are moving in the right direction. “

He stressed that “the state provides great support for many goods and also provides many facilities to merchants,” noting that “the inflation index is low in Iraq compared to many countries, including neighboring countries.   LINK

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Clare:  Ministry of Finance: Completing the final accounts of the budgets for the years from 2017 to 2019

11/13/2023

The Ministry of Finance announced the completion of the final accounts of the budgets before their legal dates.

A statement from the ministry, a copy of which {Al-Furat News} received, stated, “In confirmation of the governmental approach and the Ministry of Finance in adopting the principles of transparency and integrity in public financial management, the Ministry took the initiative with the beginning of the work of the new government and in accordance with its government program, and under the directives of the Prime Minister, Muhammad Shiaa al-Sudani, and the Minister of Finance, Taif Sami.” To begin work on completing the final accounts of the budgets for the first time for the years from 2017 to 2019, which were sent to the Federal Office of Financial Supervision, and work continues to complete the final accounts for the years 2020 to 2022.

He added, “Despite the complications that accompanied the process of issuing these accounts, the Ministry committed itself to exceptional efforts throughout the previous stage to complete the subject of the final accounts, in line with the provisions of the Iraqi Constitution, and the text of Article (62/First) of the Constitution, which stipulates that” The Council of Ministers shall submit the General Budget Law and the Final Account to the House of Representatives for approval, in accordance with the provisions of Article 34 of the Financial Management Law No. 6 of 2019.”

He pointed out that “this achievement constitutes a notable development in the corrective path of financial policy within the government program, as the state’s final accounts reflect the processes of applying the general budget in accordance with the legal regulations, rules and financial instructions in force to show the state’s financial position with its collectible rights and obligatory obligations.” Payment.”

The Ministry of Finance affirmed its “commitment and keenness to complete and submit the final accounts with each budget, and to refer them to the House of Representatives for the purpose of approval, in implementation of the decision of the Federal Supreme Court, whose decisions are considered final and binding on all authorities based on the text of Article 94 of the Constitution.”    LINK