Blinken .. Who is the new US Secretary of State?

Time: 01/26/2021 21:13:34

{International: Al Furat News} The US Senate approved, today, Tuesday, the appointment of Anthony Blinken as Secretary of State, after President Joe Biden was nominated for this position.

This came based on the results of the voting process (78 votes in favor of him compared to 22 against) that the Senate website posted.

Blinken, 58, is expected to be sworn in as soon as possible in his new position.

Interview: JP Morgan is the US dollar clearer for Arab Monetary Fund’s Buna system


BUNA has currently close to 30 banks onboarded and is in discussion with more than 130 banks from 13 different countries, its CEO told Zawya

Image used for illustrative purpose. In this Photo Illustration, Twenty and five dollar bills are displayed on August 29, 2017 in San Anselmo, California.

Gettyimages/Justin Sulliva

By Seban Scaria, ZAWYA

The Arab Monetary Fund (AMF) has appointed J.P. Morgan as a settlement bank for the US dollar (USD) in its Buna Payment System, which was launched last year. 

Besides offering its participants access to the global currency, the regional payments and settlements system will onboard the euro, Jordanian dinar and an international currency likely from an Asian country in 2021, Mehdi Manaa, the CEO of Buna, told Zawya in an interview.

Before the deal with JP Morgan, Buna had been offering its services with the UAE dirham, Egyptian pound and Saudi riyal.

“From the value of proposition, the US dollar represents 55 percent of cross-border payments in the region. So it is obviously a key currency for banks to consider for cross-border payments in a centralised way in BUNA,” Manaa said.

“Processing dollar payments between companies will be immediate and direct between the two of them, without the need to go outside the region and being constrained by [the] different time zones and different operating borders and intermediaries of each bank,” he added.

Buna has been expanding its network with banks and corporates aligning with its borader vision to promote trade and foster economic activities among Arab countries and its main trading partners.

BUNA has currently close to 30 banks onboarded and is in discussion with more than 130 banks from 13 different countries, Manaa said.

“Today, cross border payment is very costly, takes a lot of time and [is] inefficient to some extent. With Buna we resolve all that. It is real-time and reduces the chain that is involved in processing a payment end-to-end,” he said.

Several cross-border payments and settlements in the Middle East are carried out by correspondent banks, which are banks in one country acting as agents to foreign financial institutions that do not have a local presence. However, this has turned out to be an expensive process, mainly due to the anti-money-laundering rules of European and US banks.

“Compliance is a key proposition in the value proposition of Buna. Normally payment systems are not subject to AML safety rules. This applies to banks and not the market infrastructure. Despite that, in Buna, the AML safety rules are embedded in the system, ensuring that all participants adhere to the AML rules stipulated by the central governments,” Manaa said.

He added that the cost of transacting through the platform will be between 3 to 10 times lower than existing traditional approaches.

(Reporting by Seban Scaria; editing by Daniel Luiz)


Disclaimer: This article is provided for informational purposes only. The content does not provide tax, legal or investment advice or opinion regarding the suitability, value or profitability of any particular security, portfolio or investment strategy. Read our full disclaimer policy here.

© ZAWYA 2021

Barham Salih contacts the Saudi crown prince


Barham Salih


Mohammed bin Salman

2021-01-26 11:43

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Shafaq News / The Iraqi President, Barham Salih, made a phone call to the Saudi Crown Prince, Muhammad bin Salman, on Tuesday, according to the Saudi Press Agency (SPA).

The agency said that bin Salman received a phone call from Iraqi President Barham Salih, and discussed with him the brotherly relations between the two countries.

She added that the two sides discussed “prospects for bilateral cooperation and strengthening it to serve the interests of the two countries in various fields, within the framework of the Saudi-Iraqi Coordination Council.”

The International Development Bank announces its joining the “Bani” platform

Logo of the International Development Bank


Economy News – Baghdad

The International Development Bank announced that it has joined the Bani platform for clearing and settling Arab payments.

The bank said in a statement seen by “Al-Eqtisad News”, “with unremitting and promising efforts and on the occasion of launching and operating the” Buna Buna “platform for clearing and settling Arab payments owned by the Arab Monetary Fund and starting to implement the business of sending and receiving money in various currencies and after the platform’s success in conducting financial transfers in every From Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Jordan, as a first stage. ”

The statement added that “the International Development Bank, as the first Iraqi bank to start its work on this platform, which will allow its customers to send money between Arab countries and in all currencies and to the various markets of the Arab region and abroad with very low commissions, which will include more than 120 Arab banks to its network in order to expand the list of Arab and international currencies. “.

The bank emphasized that “work is underway to introduce the Iraqi dinar currency on this platform soon to encourage the use of Arab currencies in financial and investment transactions in accordance with international standards and after the International Development Bank fulfills all operating requirements, which reflects the bright image of Iraqi banks and their competition with Arab banks in applying all modern banking standards.” And her signature of the sharing agreement. ”

3 new decisions from the Kurdistan International Bank

Kurdistan Bank


Economy News – Baghdad

The Kurdistan International Islamic Bank announced that it will activate deposit boxes to store customers’ documents.

The bank said in a document received by “Al-Eqtisad News”, that “the Kurdistan International Islamic Bank has made depository funds of all kinds, small, medium and large for its customers, so that the precious jewelry and your valuable documents can be stored.”

The bank decided, according to the document, “to launch project financing and open documentary credits in exchange for mortgaging the golden records.”

It also decided to open a new branch in Zakho.

A Kurdish leader announces that “very excellent” understandings have been reached between Baghdad and Erbil

Policy- 01-26-2021 02:06 PM – Number of readings: 2712

The leader of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, Ghayath Al-Surji, confirmed today, Tuesday, that they have reached understandings with Baghdad, describing them as “very excellent and satisfying both parties, while noting that today’s meeting was very long.”


“The meeting of the Kurdish delegation today with officials with Baghdad continues, and it is the longest in terms of discussions, as it started from this morning until now,” Surji said in a statement to “Tigris . ”


“The two parties have reached very positive and excellent understandings, which will be announced upon completion of the meetings between the Finance Committee and the Kurdish delegation,” he added .


Al-Surji pointed out that “until now, the quantities of oil that will be delivered from the region to Baghdad have not been determined, while the delegation presented a very transparent budget regarding the sale of oil and its expenditures and the oil companies operating in the region, as well as the number of employees and their monthly salaries and border crossings in the region . ”


He explained that “officials in Baghdad welcomed the Kurdish proposals and those agreements,” noting that “everyone agreed that any agreement would be supported in the interest of the Iraqi people.”

Parliamentary Finance decides to amend the price of a barrel of oil in the 2021 budget

Editing date: 01/26/2021 15:08 • 15 times read


A member of the Parliamentary Finance Committee announced today, Tuesday, that the price of a barrel of oil will be adjusted in the 2021 budget.

Representative of the Parliamentary Finance Committee, Jamal Cougar, said: “The Parliamentary Finance Committee decided, in its continuous meetings, to discuss the draft general budget bill, to raise the price of a barrel of oil in the budget from 42 to 45 dollars, and calculate it according to the specified price.”

And between cougars; “This trend of raising oil prices and calculating them in the budget will save the state treasury more than 5 trillion dinars,” noting that “this also contributed to reducing the financial deficit in the budget law.”

The region’s delegation: The meeting with the Finance Committee was positive and there is an understanding of the economic situation in Kurdistan

2021/01/26 13:35

The number of readings 30

Section : Iraq

Baghdad / Al-Masala: Samir Hawrami, spokesperson for the deputy head of the Kurdistan Regional Government, Qubad Talabani, who heads the Kurdish delegation in Baghdad, Tuesday, January 26, 2021, confirmed that the Kurdish government delegation submitted all reports and answered the questions of the members of the Finance Committee during its meeting With them this past Monday.

Hawrami said in a press statement, that the discussions focused on the proportion of the region’s exports, oil and non-oil revenues, the number of employees and retirees, who receive social grants, as well as the families of martyrs, political prisoners and others, and those questions were answered in full numbers and details.

He added that the meeting was positive and there is an understanding of the economic situation in the region, and the Kurdish delegation headed by Qubad Talabani will hold another meeting today, expecting the confirmation of the region’s share in the budget.

He pointed out that the discussion will take place afterwards with the various parliamentary blocs, but the recent meetings witnessed a response by the Finance Committee, due to the accurate answers of the regional delegation.

On Monday, January 25, 2021, the Parliamentary Finance Committee held a meeting with a delegation from the Kurdistan Regional Government headed by the Vice President of the Regional Government, Qubad Talabani, to discuss the region’s financial allocations in the federal budget for 2021.

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