Samson: The “25 October” demonstrations halted military operations in Basra
22nd October, 2020
A security source said, on Thursday, that operations of a sincere promise to confine weapons to the hands of the state would stop in Basra Governorate.
The source told Shafaq News that the decision was issued by the Basra Operations Command until the completion of the demonstrations on October 25.
The “Tishreen demonstrators” intend to organize large demonstrations next Sunday (October 25) to demand the detection of the protesters’ killers and accountability for the corrupt. LINK
Samson: The Speaker of Parliament receives the US ambassador
22nd October, 2020
Today, Thursday, Parliament Speaker Muhammad al-Halbousi received the US Ambassador to Iraq Matthew Tueller.
The meeting discussed bilateral relations and the strengthening of strategic cooperation between Iraq and the United States in accordance with mutual interests.
During the meeting, the US ambassador affirmed his country’s support for the Iraqi government at all levels to achieve development, security and stability. LINK
Don961: Representative Economy: The country needs a quick reform card
Thursday 22nd October 2020 Baghdad: Morning
The Parliamentary Economic and Investment Committee affirmed the country’s need for a quick-implementation reform paper to face the current crisis, stressing the need to develop a clear economic policy to advance the national economy.
Member of the committee, Representative Riad Al-Tamimi, said, “Iraq lacks a clear economic policy from 2003 until now. What led to its dependence on oil revenues and the failure to activate the industrial, agricultural and investment sectors.
He added, “The current government is required to develop a clear economic policy that can advance the national economy, pointing out that there are mistakes and efforts to implement laws on the ground.”
He pointed out that “Article 9 of the Investment Law stipulates that a cash allowance should be within the basic design of the lands. But the National Authority calls it a discretionary substitute, confirming that his committee was able through the State Council to interpret this article and be a monetary instead of a discretionary.
He continued, that the current government does not bear the suffering of the Iraqi economy, but the previous governments did not have a clear policy for the economy. LINK
Don961: Ahmed Al-Saffar: Al-Kazemi’s visit to Europe is restructuring the Iraqi economy
Thursday 22nd October 2020 Baghdad: Hoda Al-Azzawi
The reporter of the Parliamentary Finance Committee, Ahmed Al-Saffar, stated that Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kazemi, during his current visit to France, Germany and Britain, is counting on grants, aid or loans provided by these countries to help get out of the financial crisis afflicting the country, in addition to obtaining support in the security side that It also needs funding.
It will try to push these important countries to remove Iraq from the list of high-risk countries.
Al-Saffar added to “Al-Sabah” that “France, Germany, Britain” are countries with gigantic economies and very high financial capabilities. Therefore, Al-Kazemi’s visit is of great importance in several aspects, including agreements to enter these countries as part of his campaign to restructure the Iraqi economy, which was included in the “white reform paper” ».
He stressed that the first stage of the reform paper submitted by the government to the Finance Committee can be implemented by the government, as for the other stages related to restructuring, infrastructure, social care and governance development, they need advanced and highly experienced foreign countries, so the current visit will facilitate the government’s work in implementing the paper. The Correctional Facility. LINK
Bravo13: The implementation of the white papers has already begun. Imo
Iobey777: Yes… also, IMO , they are about to complete implementation by showing the shiny new RATE!!
Don961: Iraq and Britain are discussing opening branches of foreign banks in Baghdad and the obstacles to joining the first European Bank
2020-10-21 Yes Iraq – Baghdad
The Governor of the Central Bank of Iraq, Mustafa Ghaleb Makhaif, met today, Wednesday, with the Governor of the Bank of England.
A statement by the Iraqi Central Bank stated that the meeting dealt with ways to develop banking relations and increase the volume of investment transactions between the two countries, as well as the importance of cooperation in the field of “combating money laundering and financing of terrorism” and overcoming obstacles that hinder the process of opening branches of foreign banks operating in Iraq.
The statement added that the governor met, within the framework of his visit to the United Kingdom, with the two international auditing companies Ernst & Young and PWC, where he discussed with them enhancing the volume of work with the Central Bank of Iraq because of these companies’ experience and reliability, stressing his keenness to maintain the relationship with them during the coming period.
He continued, that the Governor of the Central Bank concluded his meetings with the Secretary General of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), and the meeting included discussion of the final requirements for Iraq’s accession to the European Bank, as well as their desire to deal with private Iraqi companies and banks.LINK
Iobey777: IMO, they are shouting INTERNATIONAL!!
David: Yes, that is why they pushed so hard to become SOVEREIGN, TO BECOME INERNATIONAL…..IN 2020. Wouldn’t it be great to receive a blessing in such a terrible year?!
Samson: Nassif confirms that there are profits in the banks from farms in Iraq, Vietnam
11:00 – 10/22/2020
Representative Alia Nassif revealed, today, Thursday, that there are sums related to the profits of Iraqi farms in Vietnam in a number of banks, which is further evidence of the return of these farms to Iraq.
In a statement received by the information, Nassif said, “There are amounts related to the profits of Iraqi farms in Vietnam, which we referred to previously, amounting to 16 million dollars in banks, and there is also an amount of 525 million dollars belonging to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the banks of Vietnam, but the Ministry of Foreign Affairs refuses to claim it.“
Nassif indicated that “there is information about the existence of a room in the Spanish embassy in which all the documents related to Iraqi property abroad, according to the words of a very old commercial attaché in the ministry.”
Nassif stressed “the need for the Prime Minister, the Integrity Commission, and the concerned authorities to verify the validity of this information, take action on it, refer those involved and concealment to the case to the competent courts, and recover the people’s right from the corrupt.” LINK
Samson: Defense Minister from London: Iraq is a strong and secure country, unlike what the media portrays
22nd October, 2020
The Minister of Defense, Jumah Inad, confirmed, Thursday, October 22, 2020, that Iraq is a strong country despite the problems it is going through, while it was shown that it is possible to move around in Iraq safely, unlike what the media portrays.
A ministry statement received by Al-Masala stated that during his accompaniment to the Prime Minister and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, Minister of Defense Jumah Inad, accompanied by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, held an expanded video conference at the Russian Institute RUSI, the Royal Institute for United Studies for Strategic, International and Security Studies in London with many researchers from different parts of the country. The United Kingdom and the World.
The statement added that the Minister of Defense presented a brief explanation of the security situation in Iraq and the Middle East region, indicating that despite the problems that Iraq is going through, it is a strong country with great capabilities and qualifications, and anyone can now go to Iraq and travel day and night in all its parts with great safety, unlike Some media channels portray it to the world.
The statement quoted Inad as his assertion that the Iraqi government is continuing to implement its tasks until the elections next year. LINK
Samson: Al-Tamimi explains the legal way to return the smuggled money
19:39 – 10/21/2020
Legal expert Ali Al-Tamimi clarified, on Wednesday, the legal way to return the smuggled and frozen funds outside Iraq.
Al-Tamimi said in a statement to “the information”, that “the money smuggled abroad, which is estimated at 500 billion dollars, can be recovered through the 2005 money laundering agreement signed by Iraq with the help of a number of countries,” noting that “Iraq can benefit from Article 50 of The United Nations Charter to collect the funds, which affirms the right of countries fighting organizations placed under Chapter VII to request the assistance of the United Nations, as Iraq was fighting ISIS, which is under Chapter VII under Resolution 2170 of 2017.
He added, “Britain has shown its willingness to assist Iraq in returning and recovering these funds,” indicating that “there is an amount of 65 billion dollars in the American Federal Bank, frozen for the former regime, which Iraq can claim according to the 2008 Iraqi-American agreement.”
The Parliamentary Integrity Committee confirmed, today, Wednesday, that the federal government has not taken any real action to return the smuggled and frozen money outside Iraq. LINK
A member of Parliament Finance sets an expected date for the October salary distribution LINK
MilitiaMan: He emphasized that the government should proceed with its reforms, noting that the Minister of Finance said that the White Paper will be implemented as of January 1, 2021.
The part that seems to get lost, is the bold underlined above. Reforms are apart of the White Papers. What the White papers are yet to have exposed to the masses, is first and prior to any implementation of the White papers, is a rate at which the reforms will be allocated in and to! Yep, prior to the end of year salaries that are yet to be determined Or have yet to be paid is a rate for the last final 4 months of the year..
Toyvp: COURTESY OF TGOECKS The White Paper for Economic Reforms: vision and key objectives
22 Oct 2020 – 2:50 pm
The Iraqi government has formally adopted the White Paper for Economic Reforms prepared by the Crisis Cell for Financial and Fiscal Reform.
The White Paper seeks to put Iraq’s economy on a path that allows the state to take appropriate steps in the future to develop it into a diversified, dynamic economy. Dr. Ali Allawi, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance
The White Paper is a comprehensive programme that sets out a clear roadmap to reform the Iraqi economy and address the accumulated, decades-old serious challenges that confront it.
Iraq’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Dr. Ali Allawi said that the White Paper seeks to put Iraq’s economy on a path that allows the state to take appropriate steps in the future to develop it into a diversified, dynamic economy that creates opportunities for citizens to live a decent life.
And although the current severe fiscal crisis that Iraq is going through is related to the recent sharp decline in oil prices and to the repercussions of the Coronavirus pandemic, the White Paper makes it clear that the causes of Iraq’s economic and financial woes date back several decades.
The White Paper identifies the expansion of the role of the state as a key cause of the crisis.
The roots of the crisis
The White Paper provides a detailed outline of the factors that have distorted the Iraqi economy, undermined its capacity to provide a decent life for large number of Iraqis, and its failure to keep pace with the economic developments that the world has witnessed.
The expansion of the role of the state
The White Paper identifies the expansion of the role of the state and emergence of a command economy in Iraq as a key cause of the crisis.
From the nationalisation of vital economic sectors in 1970s, to the commandeering of all economic levers by the state to support the war effort in the 1980s, through the period of sanctions imposed on Iraq in the 1990s, these shocks, as well as the absence of strategic planning, mismanagement, maladministration, patronage and misguided political ideology, all led to an expansion of the role of the state in all aspects of economic life in Iraq.
The Iraqi economy continued to be directed by the state after the events of 2003 because of the failure of the new political system to create a free and diversified modern economy as outlined in Iraq’s Constitution, and instead continued to rely on the state as the almost only driver of economic activity in the country.
The expansion of the role of the state, and the associated increase in the number of those employed in the public sector and the cost to Iraqi exchequer of their salaries and pensions, came at the expense of the government’s ability to invest in basic infrastructure in Iraq.
To illustrate the point, the White Paper points out that from 2004 to 2020, state expenditure on the salaries of civil servants and on public sector pensions increased by 400% in real terms, as the total number of public sector workers during the same period increased by threefold.
The cost of salaries and pensions of public sector workers is expected to be around 122% of Iraq’s oil revenue in 2020. The White Paper for Economic Reforms
And between 2006 and 2018, average public sector salaries increased by 134%, more than the increase in labour productivity, which rose by only 12%, or the cost of living, which rose by 28% during the same period.
Over the past 17 years, government spending on the salaries of state employees, and on public sector pensions became the fastest growing expenditure item in Iraq’s successive federal budgets during this period.
There are currently around 4,500,000 public sector employees and 2,500,000 pensioners.
Decline of the private sector
The expansion of the state’s role, in addition to the complex administrative system and the state’s weakness in imposing the rule of law, the militarisation of society, and the influence of non-governmental actors in public institutions, led to the decline of the Iraqi private sector.
With the exception of a number of small and medium-sized companies operating in the oil and telecommunications sectors, and very small companies operating in the fields of trade, retail, transport, construction, hospitality and textiles, there is almost a complete absence of private sector companies in manufacturing.
In addition, most of the larger private sector companies depend on providing services to the state and on government contracts.
The White Paper also identified other factors that led to the deteriorating economic situation in Iraq is, most notably:
The collapse of oil revenues
The impact of Covid-19
Mismanagement and lack of planning
The weakness of financial institutions
The absence of modern coherent systems for managing state revenues
An ineffective and outdated banking sector
Complex and antiquated government procedures
Destruction of infrastructure and the costs of the war against Daesh terrorists
Two strategic goals
The White Paper identifies two overarching strategic objectives. The first is to initiate an immediate reform programme to address the budget deficit to create a fiscal space to give time for the process of implementing the other wider reforms over the medium term.
The second objective is to put the economy and the federal budget on a sustainable path, after which Iraqis can decide and choose the economic direction of the country.
The White Paper anticipates that the short and medium-term objectives and associated reforms will require between 3 to 5 years to implement.
The reform pillars
The White Paper identified five key pillars for the reform programmes:
1- Achieving sustainable financial stability
Key reforms include:
Reducing the deficit from 20% to 3% of GDP and expenditure on salaries from 25% to 12.5% of the federal budget
Collecting electricity tariffs from all users based on the real price of fuel on global markets
Recovering and returning Iraq’s smuggled and stolen money
Increasing revenues from customs and taxes
Reforming Iraq’s Pensions Fund and move to gradually end federal budget support
Reforming financial management systems
Reviewing the current exchange rate of the dollar against the dinar
2- Implementing strategic reforms and creating sustainable job opportunities
Key reforms include:
Modernising and rehabilitating the financial sector
Modernising and rehabilitating the banking system, supporting the development of private banks, reforming government banks and introducing and activating the Core Banking System in Al-Rafidain and Rasheed Banks
Expediting the development of e-banking services
Establishing new trading markets, such as a commodity market and a currency exchange market (Forex)
Supporting the sectors that drive the economy, such as agriculture, oil and gas
Introducing a private sector support fund, simplifying procedures, and providing other non-financial aid
Creating job opportunities in the private sector and supporting small and medium enterprises
Adopting a national strategy for education and training that links educational outcomes with the future need for the labour market
3- improving basic infrastructure
Building Iraq’s digital infrastructure is a key aim of the White Paper.
Key reforms include:
Increasing the effectiveness and improving the performance of all parts of Iraq’s electricity sector
Developing Iraq’s digital infrastructure, including the introduction of advanced technology (4G) at the beginning of next year, and preparing for the introduction of (5G) technology
Modernising the legal and regulatory framework of the transport sector, and encourage private investment in transport
Developing industrial cities and free zones in Iraq
4- Providing basic services and protecting vulnerable groups during and after the reform process
The reforms aim at establishing a unified and financially sustainable pension system for all Iraqis whether they are working in the public, private, cooperative or mixed sector. The White Paper for Economic Reforms
Key reforms include:
Improving water supply for both drinking and irrigation and complete sanitation projects and networks
Building 1,000 new schools during the period of the reform programme
Reforming the social security system
Establishing a unified and financially sustainable pension system for all Iraqis whether they are working in the public, private, cooperative or mixed sector
Completing and implementing the draft health insurance law to ensure that all Iraqis have access to essential health services
5- Improving governance and introducing changes to the legal framework to enable institutions and individuals to implement reforms
Reviewing and amending the official guidance in relation to government contracts
Introducing e-governance systems to strengthen oversight of government contracting and the collection of taxes and customs
Working with specialist investigative international organisations to return the large sums of money smuggled out of Iraq
Introducing an electronic governance system in the field of government contracting and tax and customs collection
Completing the project establishing the National Information Centre to facilitate the introduction of government e-services to citizens, and automate the procedures for obtaining key documents such nationality and passports and accessing pensions and social security
Introducing electronic signature and transactions throughout the public administration system and phasing out paper transactions
A detailed implementation plan of White Paper will be published later to outline the required process, identify key stakeholders and establish timelines and monitoring mechanisms.
MilitiaMan: No matter how we slice this, they need an international exchange rate prior to launching.
They European Bank of Reconstruction and Development is in the final stages for Iraq’s ascension to the bank. It is with them and along with the Global Accounting Firms of Ernst & Young and Pricewater House – Cooper that are involved with the final requirements.
To get to the final requirements tells us this White Paper has already been in play for many months and years already.
To meet with the EBRD and E & Y and PWHC is for to implement it internationally.
They mention in item #1 about reviewing the Dollar / Dinar Exchange Rate and in #2 they talk about new markets that include commodity markets and above all FOREX.
The final requirements appear to have to do with those two key elements of where we are at with this stage of the White Papers. The rest will be over a 3-5 year period.
There is an article telling us that the Director of the CBI as of recent, that an exchange rate is expected from 120 – 121 IQD to 100 USD.
That fits with internationalism. Something that the EY and CPWC have been working in conjunction with the EBRD.
News lags reality. Frank has always suggested that if it is in print now, it is done already.
So the final decisions most likely sorted. Again, if the decisions were made an the Prime Minister and the CBI Governor are in an extended stay in London has implications that there was a need for it. Just like the one with the USA was extended.
Keep mind contracts are a big thing in the WPs. imo Very very very exciting and powerful times we are in. Lets see what the CBI says when they get home..
The banks are open for accounts today and tomorrow, fwiw too.
To have an exchange rate change as the CBI Director has said would require the NSCNs(LD’s) .. imo ~ MM
DocMagee94: So White Papers “formally adopted”, and part of First Pillar of reform is to “review the price of the dollar against the dinar”…,why is no one talking about this? Isn’t this a HUGE deal????
MilitiaMan: It is a huge deal. That is is one reason that I focused on the article. A main reason. As the entities I mention would have the need to know what rate at which to apply value to contracts present and future for both commodities and the Forex markets.. HUGE deal. most likely they are sorted and are ready for the CBI to expose the rate.. imo.. ~ MM