No Ban on Dollar Withdrawals in Iraq

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No Ban on Dollar Withdrawals in Iraq

The Central Bank of Iraq (CBI) has clarified that it will still be possible to withdraw dollars from a dollar account at an Iraqi bank after January 1, 2024.

This contradicts recent media reports that suggested all dollar withdrawals would be blocked.

In a statement, the CBI said:

The Central Bank guarantees deposits in US dollars. Any citizen who deposited money in US dollars with any Iraqi bank before or by 2024 has the right to receive their deposit in cash and in US dollars.

During the press interview, there was no mention of any expectation that the exchange rate would reach 1,700. The Central Bank employs its own tools to reduce the difference between the two prices, and there are no indications that the exchange rate in the parallel market will reach this level. On the contrary, measures are being taken to reduce the difference between the two prices.

The Central Bank of Iraq has introduced reforms with the objective of bringing the bank and the overall banking system in line with international compliance standards. The aim is to prevent the dollar from reaching parties who are prohibited from obtaining it or from engaging in speculative activities with it.

The announcement states that from January 1, 2024, cash withdrawals will be stopped, but this only applies to transfers received from outside Iraq and is subject to specific arrangements that ensure the sustainability of the business. This change does not affect citizens’ balances in US dollars.

Starting from January, all transactions in dollars are prohibited.