aggiedad77 » February 17th, 2015,
Tuesday News Summaries and Commentaries
Today's news talks about issues with the budget, CBI auction caps, Maliki seeking a VISA for health treatments but turned down, results of today's COM meeting, arguments over whether the government can extend paydays by 10 days, Turki has a new committee, COM supports CBI independence, theft of funds is being tracked to hidden foreign accounts....and much more...enjoy.
The World Bank stands ready to support Iraq to implement service projects
I am suspecting this is the World Bank Group that is offering help to Iraq with service projects of varying types, initially they will be assisting with agricultural interests and water projects....projects that can help provide safe water for Iraqis to drink....as we've said before Iraq has an abundance of water but it requires processes to make it usable.
Legal expert: the government can not extend the payment of salaries for violating the budget and the need for parliamentary approval
First people were clamoring about the cap on CBI auctions that could not be changed by Parliament....now people are saying that paydays cannot be extended to 40 days by Parliament....they claim this would require an amendment to the law and must go through the Parliament process, 2 readings and a vote to be approved....it was also pointed out that this action is considered to be temporary only as long as there remains a liquidity issue and can be made in this fashion....the COM may attempt to address this issue in their meeting today.
Central Bank bought gold to be used as a cover for the process of deletion of zeros from currency
The purchase of gold last year, 48 tons, may be used as a cover for the removal of the 000's....so says one member of the Finance Committee...gold provides a good balance for the Iraqi economy and helps to maintain value with the dinar.....the gold acquisition at reduced prices in 2014 was a good deal....in 2012 Iraq owned more than 31 tons of gold...so with this purchase they stand with at least 79 tons of gold...maybe more.
Cabinet is considering taking alternative measures for staff salaries exchange decision every forty days
The COM is looking at other means to make salary payments to employees on time....they seem to realize that making payments at 40 days instead of 30 will not work....someone has suggested a number of alternatives such as borrowing from the CBI, or other countries, or attempting to dry up corruption issues and using that money, look at how money is being wasted on other sources, carving from the bigger budgets such as defense, interior, or oil....meanwhile the COM has to make a decision on how this issue will be handled.
Document .. Government discusses today entry paydays decision every 40 days into force
It would appear that the initial request to push paydays from 30 to 40 days has come from PM Abadi's office....saying that with the current financial situation in Iraq serious measures must be taken, especially for the first six months of this year.....the COM will address this issue in today's meeting and try and find a resolution.
National Business Council calls for the establishment of the Bank of state land to move the investment file and freeing it from the current obstacles
The head of the Iraqi National Business Council is saying today that land issues and red tape are still hinderances for foreign investors who wish to come into Iraq.....he is suggesting a bank of land that shows inventory available that is available for use....there were calls in the recent Investment Conference for changes in past laws that are no longer effective...these changes would help foster the private sector as players in the investment process....also mentioned as important was training for new employees in this arena....this is a largely untapped area for Iraq to walk into and start taking advantage of as they begin to address economic issues.
Urgent .. Cabinet decides the salaries of self-financing companies exchange
One of the things that the COM decided on today was the payment of salaries to self-financing companies exchange based on the recommendation of the Ministry of Finance on the issue.
Abdul-Mahdi: Iraq's oil reserves will reach 200 billion barrels
According to Oil Minister Mahdi Iraq is expecting to see its reserves of oil reach 200 billion barrels with the completion of new surveys of the country....floating on a sea of oil....that sounds more like it....he also believes that these surveys will push their existing 132 trillion cubic feet of gas reserves to 280 trillion cubic feet and rank them 5th in the world in gas reserves....along with these new reserves will come a call for a great amount of extra work in the way of building new delivery systems to move the oil and gas from the well head to storage and on to market...new storage will be needed for both, and eventually new refineries can be utilized to tap these resources for use within Iraq itself thus cutting out the need for importing fuels and lubricants....jobs....Jobs...JOBS.
Abadi Office: Delay Salary 10 days a precautionary measure will not work only in one case
PM Abadi's office says the 10 delay in paying salaries is a precautionary measure only...and only will be used in one case scenario....the issue with lack of liquidity....if the government doesn't have the money to make payroll, then this measure would be implemented.
Newspaper: Washington and Berlin refused to grant a visa to the treatment of al-Maliki
According to sources, both the US and Germany have turned Maliki down for a visa to enter their countries to seek medical treatment....wondering what is wrong with him....maybe suffering from a case of the guilts.
Kurdish lawmaker: MPs from the national forces have asked to postpone the formation of the parliamentary committee to Article 140
There apparently is a request being made to postpone any formation of a committee in Parliament for the purposes of Article 140...that may have to do with security issues in the areas of question within Article 140....the Kurds need to get their act together to make a push in front of Speaker Jubouri.
Aajl..tkhuyl [Abdul Basit Turki] to form a reconstruction fund for the presidency of the areas affected by terrorism
COM is directing the formation of a committee for Reconstruction Funds - Affected Areas of Terrorist Acts and is naming former CBI governor Turki to head the committee....the COM is also supporting adoption of recommendations made by the Committee on Economic Affairs regarding the independence of the CBI and supporting new guidelines that support achievement of control and transparency of best practices for the sale of currency operations.....are they going along with the $75 million cap or something different here....the COM also agreed on the formation of a committee of higher ranking officials from a number of ministries to examine marsh lands of Iraq in order to make recommendations regarding these areas.
The points of contention between Baghdad and Kurdistan on "oil agreement."
The Finance Committee admitted to some disagreements between the Kurds and Baghdad over the recent oil agreement and believes that additional meetings are required to alleviate the issues....one of the main issues is over calculation of oil exported, the Kurds want this to be every three months while Baghdad believes every month is better....meanwhile the other issue is about debt the Kurds owe to oil companies for 2014....this Baghdad believes can be resolved in other meetings outside of what is needed for the final agreement on the original document signed in December....I will note that the Kurds left on Sunday seeming to think they had won the issue of quarterly calculations.
Barzani: We will give time for Iraq to tackle the financial crisis
PM Barzani spoke to reporters and said that he understands that Baghdad has a liquidity problem and they have issues making salary and that time will be given to resolve these issues....he believes that differences over the oil agreement have been worked out and that Baghdad sees how serious and committed that the Kurds are to seeing this effort work smoothly for all involved....he also talked about issues concerning electricity for the region and how he and others stands with their Minister of Electricity to see through the difficulties being faced to resolve issues in this area as well. It would appear that Barzani is ready to be of a reconciliation nature with Baghdad willing to give them time to make changes, he recognizes that they have to deal with issues from the former government and that takes time.
Seminar to discuss the draft oil and gas law, the terms of
From the sounds of things a recent seminar was held to discuss specifics about the draft oil and gas law and what can be done to make sure it passes through the Parliament this time around.....some wording changes were recommended as well as removal of the legislative institution mechanisms meaning the removal of requirements for some actions only at the executive levels....pushing some of the decision making processes to a more local level.
Political analyst: political differences and the financial crisis behind rumors that exposed government Abadi
There is some talk and rumors going around that while PM Abadi talks the talk he may not be fully walking the walk with the Iraqi citizens....he speaks of reforms but so far nothing of real substance has materialized.....I'm thinking these people need to have some patience.....6 months cannot change a country that has been bent for over 8 years on wrong-doing.....give the new government some time to act in a responsible manner....besides lets not forget the serious fight that is ongoing with terrorists as he attempts to right the wrong in the economic arena of the country.
Cabinet held its weekly meeting .. and the independence of the Central Bank of the most important passages of his agenda
One of the most important actions taken by the COM today was supporting the Committee on Economic Affairs concerning the independence of the CBI...my question does this mean full independence of the CBI or just in moving the cap on auctions from $75 million to $125 million.....plus they also got other good ground covered during the meeting.
Oil Minister: Iraq needs to convert the oil and gas to the engine for sustainable economic development
Oil Minister Mahdi says that Iraq needs to work on a national policy that converts oil from being a single source of revenue to using other economic development and drivers to help support the overall revenues of the country....he also points to the increase in reserves of oil to 200 billion barrels and talks of the requirements needed to build upon this vast pool of oil...the downstream infrastructure that would need to be put into place to handle such reserves...this would bring forth a huge need for other industries secondary to oil and gas to handle such reserves....the same would be true for development of gas reserves only on a more grand scale because gas is largely untapped in the country now.
Source: Council of Ministers of the Finance Committee charged with examining the proposal for the distribution of all employees' salaries 40 days
COM (Council Of Ministers) has charged the Finance Committee with reviewing the point to distribute salaries every 40 days rather than 30 days and come to COM with their findings...sounds like the basis of this study may be presented to Parliament for a vote....this could be a part of the hold up with the budget being opened.
Most of the thieves of public money fled huge amounts of money by financial mafias linked to terrorist groups
Because it is being uncovered how so much of Iraq's money over the past 10 years has found its way into foreign secret accounts of one form or another....the government today is saying that efforts must be relentless in finding these account and bringing that money back to Iraq and prosecuting those guilty of these thefts.
Work: Exchange 65 billion during the past three years of the strategy for poverty alleviation
The Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs offered a report this week that indicated over the past three years 65 billion dinars have been offered to stem the problems with Iraqi poverty.....thousands of projects have been funded at least partially with these funds....but I think it is plain to see this is not enough to make a sizable dent in the poverty of the nation as poverty continues on the rise.
Six months left for Massoud Barzani as president of Iraqi Kurdistan
President Barzani in the Kurdistan may only have six months left before he leaves office....he has already served 2 terms...the legal limit according to Kurd Constitution terms....some say they do not trust Barzani....but others have given him a vote of confidence....meanwhile he says he is ready to leave if certain conditions in the manner in which the Kurdistan is governed are met.
The Federal Supreme Court overturn three candidates for membership of the House of Representatives
The Federal Supreme Court has recently overturned three candidates for Parliament membership.....based on the number of votes that were received....at this point it is not clear what the next move will be as a result of these findings of the court.
Cabinet announces its decisions seventh
Yes the COM did meet today and accomplished quite a bit of important business.....the most important surrounds the CBI independence and they are turning this over to the Finance Committee for further determination as we've already seen, not sure of a time frame for their decision...but it is apparent the COM backs up the efforts of the Committee on Economic Affairs in supporting CBI independence....they appointed former CBI governor Turki to head a committee on Reconstructive efforts in areas destroyed by terrorist acts....and completed action on 5 other activities for the days meeting.
The government decided to re-examine the Federal Court Act
As part of today's COM meeting a committee is being formed to re-examine the Federal Court Act....no other details of the actions of this committee were forthcoming at this time.
Kurdish lawmaker criticizes the government can not be that there is no cash to pay the salaries of the staff of the province
One lawmaker on the Kurd side is making noise that effectively says how can the central government of Baghdad manage to pay the salaries of the other provinces but leave the Kurd employees high and dry saying there is a lack of liquidity of cash....something doesn't smell right here....he is calling for an urgency in getting to the bottom of things in this matter between the two entities calling on PM Barzani to stand up for what is right for the Kurds.
Government grants Abdul Basit Turki broad powers for the reconstruction of the affected areas
The government is granting very broad powers to Turki to head his new committee in their reconstructive efforts of areas impacted by terrorist activities.....he has the full support of the COM and that of PM Abadi in whatever efforts are needed.
Well here appears to be a good spot to stop for a break....I hope you enjoy these tidbits.