The dollar is falling against the dinar with the closure of Baghdad markets

economybreakingdollardinarExchange Rates 2021-06-19 10:48A-AA+

Shafaq News/ The dollar exchange rate decreased slightly against the dinar, on Saturday, with the closure of the main stock exchange in Baghdad.

Shafak News Agency correspondent said that the Central Kifah and Al-Harithiya Stock Exchange closed in Baghdad at 148,500 Iraqi dinars, compared to 100 US dollars.

While the stock exchange recorded, during its opening this morning, 148,600 dinars per $100.

Our correspondent indicated that buying and selling prices have stabilized in banking shops in the local markets in Baghdad, where the selling price amounted to 149,000 Iraqi dinars, while the purchase prices amounted to 148000 dinars per 100 US dollars.

The Central Bank announces the content of its discussions in Erbil

economyKurdistan RegionMasrour BarzaniCentral Bank of Iraq 2021-06-19 10:20A-AA+

Shafaq News/ The Central Bank of Iraq announced the contents of its discussions, which it held, on Saturday in Erbil, the capital of Kurdistan Region.

And the bank said in a statement received by Shafaq News Agency, that the President of the Regional Government, Masrour Barzani, met in Erbil, the Governor of the Central Bank of Iraq, Mustafa Ghaleb Mukhaif, and they discussed “ways to enhance coordination and cooperation between the regional government and the Central Bank of Iraq in the field of reorganizing the banking sector and combating money laundering and terrorist financing.” .

The Governor of the Central Bank dealt with frameworks for strengthening the banking sector through several things, the most important of which is the regulation of banks affiliated with the regional government and their licensing from the Central Bank, and the regulation of the work of banking companies in preparation for their licensing, according to the statement.

The statement indicated that several committees will begin their work to accomplish the tasks directed by Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kazemi and the Governor of the Central Bank.

The Prime Minister reiterated his readiness to cooperate and coordinate with the Central Bank of Iraq, and stressed that reorganizing the banking sector would constitute a strong and important pillar for developing the economic infrastructure, consolidating the investment process, and gaining the confidence of international banks and financial institutions.

While the governor stressed the keenness of the Central Bank for the Central Bank branch in the region to carry out its supervisory and effective duties to ensure the performance of the banking sector for its activities in light of the laws in force.

Through two broad alliances .. “The Economist” suggests a second term for Al-Kazemi

Reports & AnalyticsbreakingIraqi electionsMustafa Al-KazemiMilitiaIraqi stateThe Economist 2021-06-19 08:01A-AA+

Shafaq News/ The British magazine “The Economist” started from the story of the arrest of the leader of the Popular Mobilization “Qasim Musleh” and then his release, to talk about the difficulty of building the state in Iraq, and the many internal problems he faces, despite the presence of indications of progress. 

The British magazine recalled Qassem Musleh’s visit to the shrine of Imam Hussein in Karbala after his release, and a crowd of citizens who were happy about his release rushed to make a statement in which he said: “They had no evidence,” referring to the security agency that arrested him and then released him. 

And the magazine considered, in a report translated by Shafak News Agency, that “for many Iraqis, his release was a sad reminder of how vulnerable his conditions are,” noting that after his arrest on charges of assassinating activists against corruption and Iranian influence, his armed supporters immediately occupied part of the Green Zone, Instead of risking a bloody conflict, the state released him.”

The magazine referred to the “next October elections,” noting that “thirteen major entities are vying for power, seven of whom are Shiites, four Sunnis, and two Kurds,” and that “two broad alliances of Shiites, Kurds and Sunnis are likely to emerge from this.” The mixture, one of them leaning toward Iran, and the other toward the United States and the Gulf states,” she said, adding at the same time that “Mustafa Al-Kazemi, the prime minister, would take over in a second term if he showed them that he is flexible.”

And she added, “Iraqis are wondering about the amount of power that the government they choose actually enjoys in light of the presence of militias, clans, corrupt factions and foreign forces,” noting that “many will boycott the voting process.”

The magazine’s report cited the opinions of five young men interviewed by its reporter “in a restaurant in Basra, all of whom support the massive opposition demonstrations that shook the country in 2019”, while “two of them reveal the scars of their beatings by militias.”

“I don’t have any plans to vote, I want a state,” said Nabil, a government employee who was hit with a truncheon. 

Like many Iraqis, the newspaper adds, “Nabil fears that his country is being violated by forces outside the government’s control.”

The magazine recalled, “The assassination of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani, who visited the organization of Shiite militias in Iraq, and was killed by the United States, which in turn still has an army of 2,500 soldiers in Iraq.”

And after she referred to “the role of the Popular Mobilization Forces in defeating ISIS, which took control of a third of Iraqi territory,” she explained that “the crowd has not been dissolved, and on the contrary, it is funded by the public sector with a share of 2% of GDP last year,” considering that “The government is thus funding a private army of dubious loyalty that many members of the government forces envy. 

The magazine quotes a commander in the 10th Brigade of the Popular Mobilization, who has a picture on his wall of Qassem Soleimani and Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, saying, “We always obey the prime minister’s orders.” 

As for Abu Fatima al-Basri, who runs a center for martyrs, he removes the medical mask from his face and indicates that they follow the prime minister in public issues, but “our faith goes beyond the prime minister,” as he put it, and adds that he wants the crowd to be similar to the Revolutionary Guards in Iran. 

For many Iraqis, the magazine considers that this possibility “seems terrifying,” noting that “the Revolutionary Guards are subject to the supreme religious authority and not to the president, and he runs a vast and corrupt business empire.”

According to the magazine, “The Popular Mobilization actually runs several ministries and makes a lot of money from extortion and smuggling,” noting that “the hatred against Iran and its agents is widespread, as protesters shot the Iranian consulate in Karbala last month, and others burned a crowd slated for Nasiriyah last year.” .

The prime minister’s followers say, according to the newspaper, that they are “gradually curbing the power of the militias, and a proposal for a plan was presented to integrate the Popular Mobilization into the army and cover many of its members with pensions, but the proposal did not reach anywhere.” 

She pointed to “the assassination of security analyst Hisham al-Hashemi, one of the government’s strongest supporters last year,” and that “many Iraqis have lost confidence in the prime minister.”

The British magazine considered that “the state serves its citizens, but the Iraqi state serves its employees,” explaining that “the salaries and pensions of workers in the public sector consume two-thirds of the budget.”

Last year, when oil prices were low due to the Corona epidemic, these salaries swallowed an estimated 122% of Iraq’s oil revenues, according to the newspaper, which indicated, “Oil is the only major source of income for the state,” and that “no taxes are imposed.” on civil servants over bonuses and privileges,” and that “government salaries are better than those of the private sector.” That is why I recalled a statement by Finance Minister Ali Allawi when he said, “Everyone wants to work for the government.” 

Parties dominate ministries and provide jobs for their supporters and their relatives, according to the magazine, which quotes a young oil engineer in Basra: “If I say that I do not belong to a party, they do not even allow me to apply for a job.” 

And when most of the civil servants were at home due to the epidemic period, Allawi sighed, saying, “There was no impact on production,” and the magazine indicated that this was not because they worked hard from a distance. Allawi says that about 10% of them are ghost employees, meaning they are fictitious.

The magazine added that efforts to cut public sector salaries and allocate funds to schools, roads, hospitals, and others are facing fierce resistance. She explained that politicians fear the “rebellion” of these sectors of the population, who represent 4.5 million government employees and 2.5 million retirees.

Allawi says that the demand for electricity consumption is “out of control”, because it is almost free. 

She pointed out that if the Iraqis were forced to pay their bills, they would be less wasteful in consuming electricity. Paradoxically, the magazine indicated that Iraq imports Iranian natural gas to generate more electricity, while Iraq produces large quantities of gas, but it is lost in the processes of burning or launching it into the casing. aerial. 

On a small island surrounded by buffaloes in a swamp near Basra, Numan al-Salami complains of burning gas and haze pollution. “We can’t get a job, only cancer,” he says. 

It also considered that some Iraqis, afflicted by the militants, are feeling disappointed with the religion itself, while the imams lament the decline in the number of worshipers from their followers. She added that respect for human rights is absent, and no charges have been brought against the killers of the demonstrators, despite the ongoing investigations.

She noted that Iraq has suffered great destruction from dictatorship, genocide and ISIS, and that building a nation capable of ruling Iraq requires a lot of work, adding, however, that there are signs of progress.

She explained that the main reason for optimism is that although violence has continued, it is not to the extent that it has occurred at any time since the US-led invasion in 2003, noting that the last large car bomb explosion was in 2017. And she continued, clan conflicts are still common, But she backs off. As for Iraq, it has become an open country, and visas that used to take months are now available upon arrival. Traffic passes through security checkpoints more easily than before.

She added that the economy is recovering from the Corona epidemic, and the World Bank expects a decrease of 10% last year, but there is an expected growth of 2% this year and growth of 8.4% in 2022. The budget deficit is expected to shrink from 5.5% of GDP in Year 2021. Despite the spread of corruption, optimists indicate that much of the stolen money is invested locally, not abroad. 

The old city of Mosul, which was bombed during the ISIS war, was rebuilt with the help of the United Nations, and of the 6 million Iraqis exiled by the war, nearly 80% have returned to their hometowns.

The magazine also indicated that “the Corona epidemic encouraged innovation”, and explained that credit cards are rare and it is difficult for Iraqis to place orders via the Internet, which prompted companies such as “Zain Cash” to build applications that allow digital payment. “Thanks to COVID-19, small businesses are operating at an amazing speed,” says Rashwan Sharif, who runs an internet marketing company based in Basra.

Meanwhile, ordinary Iraqis go on with their lives. “Ghaith al-Helw” remembers that he “taken a high school exam in Baghdad during the turbulent times of 2007, and the teacher did not stop the exam when a shootout occurred in the basement, and the students were asked to sit away from the window.”

Now at the age of 30, Ghaith rarely hears gunfire. He is developing an online startup called Join the Club to help Iraqis improve their English and has a cautious hope for the future, but he still looks down on his options in the upcoming elections, he says. I’m going to spoil the ballot.”

The United States is withdrawing 8 Patriot batteries from Iraq, Kuwait, Jordan and Saudi Arabia

06/19/2021 00:39

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  • Section : Iraq

Baghdad / Obelisk: Officials in the administration of US President Joe Biden said that the United States has sharply reduced the number of American anti-missile systems in the Middle East as part of a plan to reorganize the military footprint there, as the armed forces will focus on challenges related to China and Russia.

The Wall Street Journal reported that the US Department of Defense (Pentagon) is currently withdrawing approximately eight Patriot anti-missile batteries from countries including Iraq, Kuwait, Jordan and Saudi Arabia.

These officials said another anti-missile system, known as the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense System or THAAD, is also being withdrawn from Saudi Arabia, and jet fighter squadrons assigned to the area are being reduced.

The redeployment includes hundreds of soldiers who serve in military units that operate or support these systems.

And the “Wall Street Journal” explained that this step comes at a time when the US military is planning a complete withdrawal from Afghanistan by this summer, and after the United States has reduced its forces in Iraq by half – or 2,500 soldiers – after the Ministry of Defense concluded that the Iraqi army can Securing the country.

Officials said the latest cuts, which had not been announced before, began earlier this month, after a June 2 call in which US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin informed Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman of the changes.

The officials explained that Saudi Arabia witnessed the bulk of the process of withdrawing military equipment.

The United States moved Patriot anti-missile systems to Iraq after Iran in January 2020 launched missiles at the Al-Assad base in western Iraq, where American forces are stationed, in response to a US drone attack that killed Iranian General Qassem Soleimani.

Follow the obelisk – agencies

After exceeding the 150 thousand dinars, Al-Kazemi’s advisor: There is no change in the dollar exchange rate

economyU.S. dollarcentral bankIraqi dinar 2021-06-19 07:31A-AA+

Shafaq News/ Mazhar Muhammad Salih, the economic advisor to the Prime Minister, ruled out, on Saturday, changing the exchange rate of the dollar against the Iraqi dinar in the coming period, while confirming the ability of the Central Bank to control the exchange rate.

Saleh told Shafaq News Agency, “The Central Bank intervenes more broadly and with short-term plans to break bottlenecks in cash transactions and financial transfers to control the rise in dollar prices against the Iraqi dinar.”

He added that “the central bank is able to impose its control on changing the exchange rate,” noting that “the recent rise in the exchange rate came after citizens refrained from buying the currency at the beginning of this year.”

And Saleh said, “The exchange rate is fixed at 145,000 Iraqi dinars per 100 dollars, and there is no price change in the coming period.”

It should be noted that since the government reduced the value of the Iraqi dinar against the US dollar in late 2020, bringing the exchange rate of every $100 to 145 thousand dinars, and this price was fixed in the federal budget for the year 2021, and since then until now the dollar exchange rate has not been stable Where it lasted for about three months without the official exchange rate, to rise in recent months and reach 151 thousand dinars per 100 dollars.

Barzani and the Governor of the Central Bank discuss regulating the banking sector and combating money laundering

Policy 2021-06-19 | 07:10

Barzani and the Governor of the Central Bank discuss regulating the banking sector and combating money laundering


The Prime Minister of the Kurdistan Regional Government, Masrour Barzani, received today, Saturday, the Governor of the Central Bank of Iraq, Mustafa Ghaleb Mikhaif.

A statement issued by the Kurdistan Council of Ministers received by Alsumaria News stated, “During the meeting, they discussed ways to enhance coordination and cooperation between the Kurdistan Region and the Federal Government in the field of reorganizing the banking sector and combating terrorist financing and money laundering.”
According to the statement, the governor of the Central Bank stressed that “the Central Bank deals with its branch in the Kurdistan region, headquartered in Erbil, as the official concerned authority in supervising banking affairs in the region.”

The Prime Minister of Kurdistan reiterated his willingness to cooperate and coordinate with the Central Bank of Iraq, and stressed that “the reorganization of the banking system would constitute a strong and important pillar for developing the economic infrastructure, consolidating the investment process, and gaining the confidence of international banks and financial institutions.”