TNT – “Tidbits From TNT” Saturday 12-30-2023

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Tishwash:  Iran: Beginning to settle exports to Iraq in the riyal currency

The Governor of the Central Bank of Iran, Mohammad Reza Farzin, announced today, Saturday, the start of an export project to Iraq in the Iranian rial currency.

 The Iranian Fars News Agency, followed by Al-Eqtisad News, quoted Farzin as saying, on the sidelines of a meeting of the government and private sector council, that “the issue of settling Iranian exports via the riyal currency outside the borders has been studied by the Central Bank for several months, and that its entry into force will address the requirements of exporters to Iraq and Afghanistan.” “.

He added, “This issue is one of the demands of Mashhad’s merchants for export to Afghanistan, and through the implementation of the Riyal Offshore Project (riyals outside the borders), merchants will be able to benefit from it instead of foreign currency.”

The Governor of the Central Bank of Iran pointed out that “the regulations for the cross-border rial project have been formulated by the Central Bank, and in practice two banks have started this project, and soon it will be circulated to all the country’s banks  link

Tishwash:  Iraq and Iran Strengthen Cooperation on Oil Industry

The Iraqi and Iranian ministers of oil have agreed to establish committees to expand cooperation, including committees for the development of shared border fields, investment in gas and petrochemical industries, and renewable energy.

Other committees will focus on the qualification and development of refineries, joint training, and collaborative efforts in oil marketing, drilling, pipeline supply, spare parts, oil exploration, and more.

The meeting this week also saw the signing of a memorandum of cooperation in the field of training and development.

Deputy Prime Minister Haidar Al-Abadi, during his official visit to Iran, engaged with Iranian government officials and the Ministry of Oil. The delegation included officials from various Iraqi oil-related entities.   link

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CandyKisses:  Another blow to the green. Iran abandons the dollar and starts its exports through the “rial”

Baghdad Today – Follow-up

The Governor of the Central Bank of Iran, Mohammad Reza Farzin, confirmed on Saturday (December 30, 2023) the start of the project to stabilize the country’s exports abroad in the national currency of the rial.

Mohammad Reza Farzin said on the sideslines of the meeting of the Council of Government and the private sector in Khorasan Razavi province (northeast), that “the issue of settling Iranian exports through the riyal currency outside the borders has been studied by the Central Bank for several months and that its entry into force will address the requirements of exporters to Iraq and Afghanistan.”

He added, “This issue is one of the demands of Mashhad traders to export to Afghanistan, and through the implementation of the “Riyal F-Shore” project (riyal outside the borders), traders will be able to benefit from it instead of foreign currency.”

He pointed out that “the regulations of the cross-border riyal project have been drafted by the Central Bank, and in practice two banks have started this project, and soon it will be circulated to all banks in the country.”

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Tishwash:  Chambers of Commerce: Positive government steps that will attract major merchants and international companies

Today, Saturday, the Federation of Iraqi Chambers of Commerce confirmed the existence of positive government steps that will attract major international merchants, companies, and labels. While it identified the most prominent tax problems, it pointed out that “merchants’ lack of confidence” is the most important obstacle to tax reform. 

The president of the federation, Abdul Razzaq Al-Zuhairi, said, “Entering the electronic platform to pay taxes has become inevitable and will be implemented within the time frame set by the General Tax Authority, but there is a major problem represented by small merchants who now represent the majority, as they are forced to go to the parallel market,” noting that “There has been an old fear for decades between the merchant and the government.”

He pointed out that “a positive tax system has been launched, but we need to restore trust between the merchant and the government.”

He added, “The majority of the Iraqi market is made up of small merchants, due to the circumstances that Iraq went through,” adding, “The equation will change during the coming period, and large international companies and labels and major merchants will enter the Iraqi market, while small merchants will be shoppers.”

He stated that “taxes created a kind of gap and problems for many Iraqis, including loss of files, similarity of names, taking deposits without refund, calculating the tax twice, and other problems.”

He stressed that “the recent decision of Prime Minister Muhammad Shiaa Al-Sudani will change many of those problems mentioned above, but implementation needs to be strict.”

He pointed out that “Iraq deals with white money with countries around the world, so the issue of the electronic platform is positive, and it is a global step.”

The General Authority for Taxes announced earlier the adoption of electronic payment in a binding manner for the payment of taxes, starting from January 1 of the new year 2024, while confirming the start of implementing the self-assessment system for the first time in Iraq.

The Director of the Authority, Ali Waad, confirmed earlier that the General Tax Authority seeks to obtain proper and legal approvals for the recommendations that were presented by us during the tax reform conference held on the sixth day of this month.

He pointed out that among the most important recommendations for tax reform are:

First: stabilizing property and land values, which will reduce human intervention and reduce opportunities for corruption, which will help in implementing the comprehensive electronic system.

Second: The Authority seeks to encourage local companies to pay all taxes due related to these companies by amortizing the fines and interest they owe, provided that they pay the original tax due.

Third: The Authority is seeking to submit a proposal to amortize 50% of the fines and interest imposed on foreign companies, especially oil companies, on the condition that the original taxes due are paid as an important basic step, to follow the problem-free policy.

Fourth: The Authority seeks to solve the problem of similarity of names, this major problem that exists in the General Authority for Taxes, and it is an existing and previous problem, by canceling all the double names that were previously provided to the General Authority for Taxes, and returning them to the official authorities to complete them and adding the triple name or the first name. Mother, wife, or date of birth. 

As for the common triple names, including the name (Ali Hussein Ali), which is a very common name and greatly obstructs tax accounting operations, especially for taxpayers in Baghdad and the governorates, so the Authority proposes to return these names to the authorities that sent them to the Authority, to provide them with full information.

Fifth: The Authority is working to complete the stages of networking between the Authority’s center and the rest of the state institutions, including ministries, agencies and general directorates, and to link them electronically, by creating electronic interfaces (WebCite) to provide electronic services, especially to taxpayers. 

Sixth: The Authority seeks to cooperate with state departments to electronically connect and adopt the (barcode) system between the Authority and other government departments, as it has been applied in several departments, including all traffic directorates in Baghdad and the governorates, as well as in the company registrars’ department and in the real estate registration departments between the governorates and Baghdad.

Seventh: The authority’s management seeks geographical expansion by opening new branches to reduce the momentum occurring in some branches in the governorates, as well as increasing the tax base, in addition to increasing the number of taxpayers, and simplifying procedures for citizens, as the authority obtained the approval of the Minister of Finance, Taif Sami, to open two branches in each. From the governorates of Basra and Diwaniyah, and one branch in each of the holy governorates of Karbala and Anbar. 

Eighth: The Authority is seriously seeking to implement an electronic system, which will contribute significantly to speeding up transactions, reducing cases of corruption, and increasing state resources  link