Baghdad / Obelisk: The Prime Minister’s Adviser for Financial and Economic Affairs, Mazhar Muhammad Salih, on Saturday, July 24, 2021, identified the reasons for the decline in the country’s gross domestic product, while revealing by numbers the decline in the unemployment rate and the poverty rate.
Saleh told Al-Masala, “The slowdown in economic activity in the year 2020 (in light of the closure of the national economy and the suspension of business for long months and the disruption of reciprocal entanglements in the labor and production markets, had the widest impact on the decline in the country’s gross domestic product, which was estimated by the economic circles affiliated with international financial institutions). Multilateralism with a rate of no less than negative 9.5% to negative 11% as an average for the year 2020.
He added that “2020 was one of the most difficult years in which the gross domestic product lost important rates of value added and there was a decline in overall economic spending, whether at the level of the general budget or individual spending, accompanied by high rates of unemployment in the labor force and zero growth in prices, which is the triple. Which I mentioned that there is an economic stagnation in the national economy in the year 2020.”
He stressed that “were it not for the monetary policy stance of the Central Bank of Iraq, which made the monetization of public debt tools as a quantitative facilitation in providing liquid monetary assets by monetizing public debt, supplementing government spending and sustaining payments to the banking system, the situation would have been very dangerous.”
He pointed out that “the Central Bank of Iraq has provided cash liquidity by accepting government debt instruments for the benefit of total spending, whose value exceeded 41 trillion Iraqi dinars,” praising the “successful role of monetary policy in moving the stagnant joints of the economy and lifting it from deterioration towards recession and preventing cases of poverty and unemployment in Iraq.” The year 2021, in order to make this year a year of truly economic recovery, especially after economic growth in GDP turned into achieving simple positive rates.
He continued: “But it is still below the annual population growth rate, which means that the improvement in GDP growth is slow, but at least there is no deterioration in GDP, as unemployment rates have declined today from the rates that prevailed in 2020, and employment has improved as unemployment has fallen.” To less than 22% currently, and it is in a relative decline after it reached more than 27% last year, and the poverty rates have also declined, after reaching nearly 35% in the year 2020, to less than 25% of the population.
He explained, “The policy of credit facilitation adopted by the Central Bank of Iraq by providing at least 4 trillion dinars for the housing sector (except for other sectoral credits) without bank interest and the adoption of long payment periods, has provided the grant element in the real estate credit policy for Iraq, as it absorbs The construction and housing sector is about 20% of the Iraqi labor force currently, and it is an important activity that has improved job market opportunities and reduced unemployment trends.”
MHe concluded by saying: “But corruption remains the added cost that the national economy pays for, which ranges between 25-40% of the cost of implementation, whether in government equipment or the contracting sector, and it is a serious dilemma that has become and is still one of the constants of economic and political reform required in Iraq, which took over the paper. White address it frankly.”
Baghdad / Obelisk: On Saturday, July 24, 2021, US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken expressed his support for Iraq’s efforts to combat corruption and economic reform, and that the United States remains committed to helping the Government of Iraq achieve a secure and prosperous future.
The Iraqi Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement, “Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein held a meeting today with US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken as part of the fourth round of strategic dialogue in Washington, DC, and the two sides discussed the importance of continuing to strengthen bilateral relations at all levels, and they exchanged views on the latest developments in the region.” and the importance of intensifying consultations on regional issues and the challenges facing their stability.
Hussein expressed, “Baghdad’s aspiration to support and strengthen bilateral relations with Washington in a way that reflects its strategy, stressing the need for cooperation to achieve the common interests of the two friendly peoples.”
The two ministers also reviewed, according to the statement, “the strategic dialogue and the reaffirmation of the principles agreed upon by the two sides in the Strategic Framework Agreement.”
For his part, Secretary Blinken stated that “the United States is committed to assisting Iraq and ensuring the security of the elections, appreciating the reference of the supreme reference, Ayatollah Sayyed Ali al-Sistani to the need for international oversight, and the Security Council’s decision, noting to work with Congress to allocate five hundred million dollars to assist the Electoral Commission, and to provide training advice, and encouragement of Iraqis to participate widely in the upcoming elections.”
Shafaq News/ The Iraqi Prime Minister, Mustafa Al-Kazemi, chaired on Saturday the 28th regular session of the Council of Ministers, during which he took 7 new decisions after discussing the latest developments in the country and the topics on the agenda.
Al-Kazemi’s office stated in a statement received by Shafaq News Agency, that the latter discussed, at the beginning of the session, the work of the ministerial committee formed to investigate the accident of Imam Hussein Teaching Hospital in Dhi Qar Governorate, in light of the request submitted by its members to extend its work due to the Eid holiday.
His Excellency urged the committee to expedite the investigation and to deepen it with full transparency in order to achieve the truth and identify the culprits in the accident.
The meeting also discussed the service reality of the capital, Baghdad, and the need to make all efforts by the concerned authorities to raise the level of services provided.
The Prime Minister gave the Mayor of Baghdad 14 days to immediately address the waste problem in the capital’s neighborhoods, and not be held accountable.
The Cabinet hosted the Undersecretary of the Ministry of Electricity, to discuss the current reality of electricity, the efforts of the Ministry of Electricity to increase the production of electric energy, and attempts to avoid problems and challenges facing the work of the Ministry.
The Prime Minister directed the Ministry of Electricity to redouble its efforts in order to provide electricity to citizens and alleviate their suffering.
The Council also hosted the President of the Federal Financial Supervision Bureau and the Chairman of the Integrity Commission, where a number of issues related to the work of these two oversight bodies, which perform important oversight tasks and duties, were discussed.
Al-Kazemi stressed the importance of the oversight role in government and institutional work in general, and the need to develop work mechanisms so that they do not hinder the work of state institutions.
The Undersecretary of the Ministry of Health reviewed the epidemiological report on the Corona pandemic, the developments of the work of the Committee to Strengthen Government Actions in the Fields of Health Awareness Prevention and Control to limit the spread of the virus, the efforts of health institutions to provide services to the infected, whose numbers have increased in recent weeks, and their efforts to urge citizens to prevent, and immunize with vaccines Provided by the Ministry of Health in good quantities through vaccination outlets throughout the country.
After discussing the topics on the agenda, the Council of Ministers issued the following decisions:
First / Approval of the Ministry of Finance’s contribution to the second withdrawal of the fourth renewal of the resources of the OPEC Fund for International Development for the years (2021-2024), in which Iraq’s share amounted to (1,788,000) dollars, only seventeen million eight hundred and eighty thousand dollars, at a rate of (4,470,000) dollars, only Four million four hundred and seventy thousand dollars annually.
Second / Determining the work of Cabinet Resolution (190) for the year 2021 for a period of two months starting from July 9, 2021, regarding the supply of the Ministry of Oil, the Ministry of Water Resources with fuel, oils and fats on credit, and at a rate of (100%) for the departments listed below:
1. The General Authority for the Operation of Irrigation and Drainage Projects.
2. The General Authority for the Maintenance of Irrigation and Drainage.
3. River Cree Business Department.
Third / Approval of the draft law of the first amendment to the Law on the Welfare of Persons with Disabilities and Special Needs (38 of 2013), which was reviewed by the State Council and referred to the House of Representatives, based on the provisions of Articles (61 / item first, and 80 / item second) of the constitution, taking With interest the notes of the Legal Department of the General Secretariat of the Council of Ministers mentioned in its memorandum numbered M. D/ Q/2/2/335/60 L.Q., dated 27/1/2021.
Fourth / The Ministry of Finance allocates an amount of (2117,000,000) dinars, only two billion one hundred and seventeen billion dinars, from the emergency reserve for the fiscal year / 2021, to the Ministry of Agriculture / the Veterinary Department and in an emergency manner to provide the needs, supplies and vaccines for avian influenza (H5N8); This is to contain the disease and protect poultry projects in Iraq, based on the provisions of Article (5) of the General Federal Budget Law of the Republic of Iraq for the fiscal year / 2021.
Fifth / The Ministry of Finance transferred an amount of (30,000,000) dinars, only thirty billion Iraqi dinars, from the allocations for receiving the wheat crop from the account of the Ministry of Trade to the account of the Ministry of Agriculture, for the purpose of filling the financial shortfall in receiving the wheat crop seeds, and providing seeds of higher ranks for the next season.
Sixth / Approval of the increase in the capital of the public companies listed below, approved by the Federal Financial Supervision Bureau, and the Capital Determination Committee in the Ministry of Finance, based on the provisions of Article (10) of the Public Companies Law (22 of 1997), as amended, as follows:
1. The Iraqi Oil Tanker Company is one of the formations of the Ministry of Oil with an amount of (131,8291,7503) dinars, only one hundred and thirty-one billion and eighty-two million and nine hundred and seventeen thousand five hundred and three dinars.
2. Diyala State Company, one of the formations of the Ministry of Industry and Minerals, with an amount of (413,7580,9561) dinars, only forty-one billion, three hundred and seventy-five million, eight hundred and nine thousand, five hundred and sixty-one dinars.
3. Ur State Company, one of the formations of the Ministry of Industry and Minerals, with an amount of (46 billion) dinars, only forty-six billion dinars.
4. The Ministries of Oil, Industry and Minerals have taken the necessary measures to implement the above.
Seventh / Approval of the Ministry of Oil’s procedures to complete the basis for negotiation while achieving fair standards for the actual performance indicator, in a manner that guarantees the best international practices, and evaluating the financial standards in a way that matches the applicable inflation rates, proceeding to sign with the French Total and accelerating the formation of administrative and technical entities to implement and manage the project In the implementation phase, submit its final report (after signature) before the Council of Ministers as soon as possible.
Al-Araji said during his meeting with US officials in Washington, “We assured the American side that Iraq does not need any foreign combat force on its soil.”
He added, “It will be on December 31, 2021, and it has a special taste.”
On Friday, the US embassy expressed its support for the strategic dialogue conducted by an Iraqi delegation in Washington.
And the embassy said in a statement that “Nass” received a copy (July 23, 2021), that “the US State Department hosted in Washington, DC, Iraqi leaders and officials today to hold discussions on the strategic framework agreement.”
The embassy added that “the United States is proud and honored to host this important conversation about the continuing strong and solid partnership between our two countries,” stressing that it will announce “some of the results of these discussions in the coming days.”
Earlier today, Friday, Foreign Minister Fouad Hussein confirmed that the Iraqi government is moving confidently towards holding the elections on schedule, while stressing full respect for Iraq’s sovereignty.
Hussein said in his speech: “Today, we are in the American capital, Washington, in response to the invitation of Foreign Minister Anthony Blinken to hold the work of the Supreme Committee emanating from the Strategic Framework Agreement for the Friendship and Cooperation Relationship between the Republic of Iraq and the United States of America, which represents a continuation of the strategic dialogue and since the launch of its first round in June of last year”.
He added, “Let me thank the attendees, the representatives of the committee from the American and Iraqi sides, for their efforts that they will make in the side sessions of the dialogue.”
He pointed out that “the round of dialogue comes as a continuation of the previous three rounds, which were held in succession, as it provides a clear vision of what characterizes the partnership and alliance relationship between Iraq and the United States, and the serious efforts of the two governments to consolidate it, and it is a continuation of the joint efforts that were made in those rounds, as they were held.” The first round was hypothetically on June 11, 2020, the second was held in Washington, D.C., on August 19, 2020, and the third was held on April 7, 2021. In this meeting, we look forward to completing what was agreed upon in the third round of dialogue and moving forward to achieve more Progress in all dialogue sessions that will be held by the relevant committees.
And he stated that “these sessions represent a serious will for both countries to reach common understandings for cooperation in various sectors, and are a continuation of the agreements that resulted from previous rounds in sectors such as (oil and gas, electricity, financial, health, environmental, and cultural sectors) in addition to the security and military aspects.” .
Hussein called on the representatives of the sessions in various sectors to make more efforts to reach fruitful results that lead to the achievement of the common goals of both countries.
‘We need training and advice’
He continued: “At the end of last month, we participated in the ministerial meeting of the International Alliance at the joint invitation of the foreign ministers of the United States of America and Italy, whose work was held in the capital, Rome on June 28, and we conducted intensive dialogues with all parties, during which Iraq affirmed its full commitment to ensuring The inevitable defeat of the terrorist organization ISIS and the permanence of the victory achieved by joint cooperation.
He pointed out that “Iraq appreciates the efforts made by the US government to rehabilitate and train the Iraqi security forces, equip them and provide advice in the intelligence field, in order to reach the required readiness in relying on their own capabilities, in a way that enhances Iraq’s sovereignty and security and preserves its gains by defeating the terrorist organization ISIS.” “Iraq today stresses the importance of sustaining the momentum and international efforts led by the United States of America through the international coalition, as they constitute, in parallel with the military efforts, an inevitable victory over the ideology of injustice and hatred that terrorism is trying to spread in societies.”
He stressed that “our security forces still need the programs provided by the United States of America, related to training, arming, equipping, and capacity-building, and we seek to continue bilateral security coordination and cooperation. We also affirm the commitment of the Government of Iraq to protect the personnel of diplomatic missions, their headquarters and facilities, and to ensure the security of Iraqi military bases hosting Iraqi forces.” International Alliance.
And he stated that “the Iraqi government and parliament succeeded in protecting national gains in preserving democracy and the legitimate rights of the Iraqi people to live in freedom and dignity. To achieve the demands of the Iraqi people and the credibility of the promises made by the Iraqi government, a new electoral law was enacted and a new independent high commission for elections was formed.”
The elections are on time
He pointed out that “the Iraqi government is moving confidently towards holding the elections on the scheduled date on the tenth of next October, despite the challenges, while ensuring the provision of a safe environment for voters to achieve free and fair parliamentary elections to restore confidence in the democratic process in Iraq.” The international community is making, through the United Nations, to monitor the upcoming elections process, as the UN Security Council approved its resolution No. (2576) for the year 2021, at an Iraqi request, to extend the work of the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) for the next year and to expand its jurisdiction to include the observation of general parliamentary elections.
He continued, “We can only thank the countries that supported Iraq’s request to strengthen the procedures for monitoring the elections and ensuring their integrity, and the efforts of the United States in particular for its initiatives in this regard.”
He added, “Many memoranda of understanding have been concluded in various sectors during the previous rounds of dialogue, which support our endeavors to affirm the common interests between the two sides,” stressing Iraq’s progress in strengthening its economic independence and achieving regional and international partnerships in a balanced manner, the latest of which was the tripartite summit initiative between the two sides. The Iraqi government, the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and the Arab Republic of Egypt, as well as efforts to link Iraq to the regional energy system across the Gulf states.
He pointed out that “The Iraqi government is completing its efforts to lift the injustice that befallen our society, which has multiple components of the injustice and darkness of terrorism, as the Iraqi Parliament has enacted the Yazidi Survivors Law. As well as the government’s steps in cooperation with international partners to promote dialogue and societal peace, reject violence and extremism, respect religious, sectarian, ethnic and national diversity in Iraq, and reject forms of discrimination between citizens, which the Iraqi constitution affirms, as well as the efforts of the Iraqi government to reach the Sinjar Agreement to maintain security in it in cooperation between the security forces Federal and Peshmerga forces, as many joint security centers have been established in areas where ISIS terrorist pockets are active, as well as the efforts of the Iraqi government and in coordination with international organizations to ensure voluntary returnfor the displaced.
And he indicated that “the Iraqi government has pursued a path to support security and stability internally and at the regional level by relying on dialogue and taking joint opportunities to achieve this. Therefore, we affirm full respect for Iraq’s sovereignty in a manner that guarantees its internal stability and not being drawn into regional conflicts.”
With regard to confronting the Corona pandemic and its challenges, and what the world is facing today from the emergence of new strains that are more harmful to the lives of citizens, which requires completing cooperation between the ministries of health in both countries to provide requirements for rapid response to ward off the risks of this pandemic, expressing “his hope that agreements will be reached for support and cooperation in Health field during the side session that will be held between the two sides.
Hussein concluded by saying that “Iraq renews its affirmation and commitment to strengthening its strategic partnership with the United States of America as a key partner in the international coalition to combat ISIS, and renews Iraq’s commitment to contract and strengthen economic partnership, investment and joint action in all sectors, which are included in the Strategic Framework Agreement, with a commitment to respecting Sovereignty of Iraq and ensuring full coordination with the Iraqi government, and we are confident in our ability to move together in setting the course of this relationship on the path of well-being and prosperity that the peoples of our two countries seek and the great historical responsibility entrusted to us.” “.
Baghdad – Mawazine News, Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kazemi sponsored, on Saturday, a signing ceremony for the sale of one million tons of heavy fuel oil at international prices to Lebanon. A statement by the Prime Minister’s Media Office, received by Mawazine News, stated that “the signing ceremony of the agreement between Iraq and Lebanon included the sale of one million tons of heavy fuel oil at the international price, provided that the payment is in services and goods.” The statement indicated that “the agreement was signed on the Iraqi side by Minister of Finance Ali Abdul-Amir Allawi, while the Lebanese Minister of Energy and Water Raymond Ghajar signed on the Lebanese side, while the contract was signed by the Director General of the Oil Marketing Company, Alaa Al-Yasiri, and for the Lebanese side by the Director General of Oil. Lebanese Oro Feghali. Ended 29/A 4
Shafaq News/ The US State Department said on Saturday that the meeting of the Higher Coordination Committee between the Republic of Iraq and the United States in Washington confirmed the expansion of US support for Iraq.
In a statement, the ministry touched on a number of themes in my agency:
Public health and the epidemic:
• The United States will donate to Iraq 500,000 doses of the Pfizer-Biontech vaccine through the Kovacs Initiative.
• The US Department of State provides Iraq with $800,000 to enhance safety measures to prevent the misuse of biological samples and medical equipment.
• The United States continues to support efforts to prevent COVID-19 through community awareness, vaccine acceptance, the sustainability of primary health care services, and the provision of mental health and psychosocial support.
• The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention trains public health workers to mitigate health risks associated with large gatherings, improve infection prevention and control, and strengthen management and coordination in responding to public health emergencies.
• The United States announced $155 million in additional humanitarian assistance to provide shelter, health care, food, water, and hygiene services throughout Iraq. This funding also helps displaced Iraqis obtain civil documentation and legal services, improves the capacity of health care facilities, and increases access to education and employment opportunities.
Clean energy and climate change:
· The United States intends to provide technical assistance in the area of renewable energy and climate adaptation.
The United States commended Iraq for now providing a revised “Nationally Determined Contribution” under the Paris Agreement of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.
The United States intends to cooperate with Iraq to enhance climate management capacity to mitigate and mitigate gas flaring, develop renewable and clean energy initiatives, promote water conservation, and support the protection of Iraq’s native flora and fauna.
The United States encouraged Iraq to participate in the Agricultural Innovation Mission for Climate initiative.
US and Iraqi scientists and academics intend to exchange views on climate adaptation and mitigation.
The United States and Iraq discussed ways to promote bioenergy projects with American companies and facilitate trade in American agricultural products.
The United States is ready to help Iraq implement the “white paper” for economic reform, with assistance from the US Agency for International Development and a possible new program from the State Department focused on fiscal transparency.
The US International Development Finance Corporation continues to partner with Iraq on the Memorandum of Understanding and intends to invest up to $1 billion to boost private sector activity that creates jobs and opportunities for Iraqis.
The US International Development Finance Corporation intends to hold a virtual meeting with US and Iraqi companies this year to help facilitate investment projects.
Human Rights and Elections:
• The two delegations discussed how the United States can best support the Iraqi government to protect protesters, activists, women in public life, and journalists, and pursue judicial accountability for violent crimes against these groups.
• The United States recently provided $9.7 million to the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) for election-related technical assistance. The United States reviewed plans to provide up to an additional $5.2 million for the UNAMI Election Observation Team pending engagement with Congress.
• The two countries agreed that the presence of a UNAMI monitoring team and an EU observer team represents a sincere effort by the international community to support the Iraqi people’s demands for free and fair elections in October.
• The United States reaffirmed its continued determination to support Iraq in helping the communities targeted by ISIS recover, and to work towards the rehabilitation and peaceful social reintegration of Iraqis with perceived or actual family ties to ISIS—particularly women and children.
• The United States commended the Government of Iraq for passing the Yazidi Survivors Law, and the two delegations agreed on the need to implement it and support the new Directorate of Survivors’ Affairs in the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs, to facilitate the provision of services and compensation to Yazidi survivors of ISIS. The Government of Iraq has committed to passing a Supreme Court law to advance justice for ISIS survivors.
Higher education, science and culture:
The United States has provided $17.5 million since 2017 in assistance to support nongovernmental, not-for-profit higher education institutions in Iraq.
The United States, Iraq and the Smithsonian Institution decided to expand and extend the Nimrod rescue project.
The United States provides assistance to conservation projects in Babylon, Mosul, Erbil, and other sites at risk.
The United States will launch a new virtual museum initiative in cooperation with the State Council of Antiquities and Heritage under the name “Treasures of Mesopotamia,” which will bring the rich Iraqi cultural heritage to millions via the Internet.
The United States will allocate $1.2 million to the Liberated Universities Initiative, which restores Iraqi universities in Nineveh after they were destroyed by ISIS.
The United States and Iraq reaffirmed their commitment to producing strong “work-ready” Iraqi college graduates and professionals through enhanced teaching methods, expanded educational opportunities, and scholarships through the Higher Education Partnership, the Fulbright Program, the Iraqi Young Leaders Exchange Program, and the English Language Small Grants Program.