Could we be in for a VERY LONG wait for all these new laws, including the 2015 Budget bill, to reviewed by the Federation Council ?
Absolutely Not! At least this is what I am told by the GOI. Since most of the provincial representatives were needed to negotiate these new laws many have been already involved in the new laws all along. Dr Allawi has been running an “informal” federation council behind the scenes. Basically I am telling you most of these new laws are already reviewed by the members of the Federation Council. For the most part all they will need is a quick session and to pass thru the bundle and let Parliament do a final vote on the “basket”.
So the Federation Council is now legalized and is implemented. It is a brand new part of the review process for a new law and will NOT be an additional burden and time consuming going forward on new laws, as many are believing. They will work in conjunction with parliament during the readings and supply their input in harmony with them. They have not yet had the chance to do so formally in the past for this “basket” of new laws because they simply did not exist as a council when many of these laws had their first and/or second readings. Remember many of these new laws originated years ago. Maliki was blocking the formation of the Federation Council.
More on the Federation Council
Bear in mind the Iraqi government was NOT fully formed according to the Iraqi constitution until the Federation Council was implemented and working. This has been overlooked and ignored by many “intel gurus”. It is a USA and UN mandated requirement before any completion of the economic reforms can happen meaning a re-pricing of their currency. It is part of the carrot they hold out over the GOI.
So don’t get confused. Since what is really important is the fact that parliament is still going to be the “final” vote and this is really part of the key we are looking for to unlock this mystery of why we still wait for an RV. So now we know what has to take place with these new laws and why we have not yet seen them move forward to completion on them.
Last Week’s Progress
The process of carrying out their plan of completing their government was explained somewhat especially in my last 2 news letters of 2/2 and 2/4. It has not changed. This is a continuing saga. The plan is being executed.
We saw the Federation Council finally being implemented and this was HUGE news.
Next we saw the national guard law get written and finalized by the council of ministers. Then we read about the Ba’ath party reform bill also being finalized. This we all should recognize by now as a precursor to full Amnesty implementation in the very near future. We all should also know by now the implementation of amnesty is a stickler with the USA.
Next we saw many more banking reforms announced for example we read about the by acceptance of electronic deposits from the Iraqi government into any bank, even international banks. We also saw the Committee on Economic Affairs hold its third meeting and from it out came twelve (12) banking sector decisions. Did you see these? Here is the link.
These decisions are nothing new to any of the world’s banking sector . Just normal banking practices. However this shows use the concern to bring Iraq back into the real world’s banking sector to play with the “Big Boys” (the international banks around the globe).
Next we heard that Abadi was going to give the people a surprise and then out pops the GOI announcing the 2003 night time curfew has been lifted. Life is going back to normal in Iraq. This to me is weird since we are still constantly hearing news about Mosul being overtaken and other areas of northern Iraq still under ISIS occupation. But I think I know the strategy being played out here. Iraq is desperately trying to portray itself as a safe and secure country for investors to flock to. I think that lifting the curfew is a brilliant move on Abadi’s part and tell us once again just how close we are to having the economic reforms completed.
Now when will they give the people back their currency? How can anyone not feel that this is just about to happen.
This is all good and it was a very productive week for Iraq. I am very excited !
Expectations for this Week
Remember that these new laws in this “basket” of laws back up the budget bill of 2015 we just witnessed get voted on over a week ago on 1/29. These laws are needed since the budget provides funding for them. How can you fund something that does not yet exists or is not finalized in legal form?
So now these laws must be reviewed by the Federation Council, by Feb 10th at least a cursory review to meet the constitutional requirement for a review. Since the next session of parliament was announced to begin on Feb 10th I believe this is their target. I believe this will not be a hold up and this deadline will be met. Remember too I have heard that the Federation Council has been informally involved in many of these bills already and these representatives are very familiar with the content.
Next I believe this “basket” of new laws can then have their last needed readings in parliament (if any required) and get their final vote. I also believe they almost have to conduct this vote on the “basket” of new laws as a basket in order to get them all voted on in a timely manner. They will be racing the clock since I believe the deadline for this voting completion is Feb 12th.
Why Feb 12th?
Because that is the deadline for the president to ratify the 2015 Budget Bill and the budget needs these laws in order to support and make legal the allocations contained within it. They have a couple days of fluff since they have two days to publish it in the gazette once ratified and 24 hours afterwards to fund it. So this brings us realistically to Feb 15th when the budget will be opened and the allocations can begin to be spent. Will this happen on time? Let’s see what happens this week.
Does this mean they will re-price their currency on or prior to Feb 15th?
Iraq has been telling us they intend to complete the economic reforms on around mid February and more specifically maybe completed by the Unification Conference as it is scheduled for Feb12th. It all makes sense to me. Do you think perhaps there is a link between this conference date and the dates I outline above? Seems like an intentional schedule put together to me.
So I ask you now these questions:
Could this Federation Council requirement be the final step that ties all these laws together for a final vote in parliament for this basket of laws this week?
Could this vote be coming in the next session beginning on Feb 10th in order to be done by Feb 12th , the next Unification Conference?
Does the GOI want to enter this conference with egg on their faces or to report progress, as promised? Remember they are now well beyond the 120 days mandated timeframe agreed to by the GOI to complete any of these reforms. It is way over the time limit to implement them.
Today is Feb 9th. Can they do all this in 3 days?
Are they much farther ahead in this process than they are leading us to believe?
So you see Al-Abadi along with the CBI have to make a decision soon on when to RV this currency. I believe this decision has already been made weeks ago and we are now in the final countdown window now that the budget is truly done and the government is fully formed. Can Iraq be fully positioned with all these new laws in time to open and begin spending this 2015 budget?
Peace and Luv To Ya All,