Samson: Iraq “Well Positioned” to Service its Debts
29th January, 2020
Iraq is well positioned to service its debt obligations, according to an article in Australia’s Investor Daily.
Responding to the question “what’s your view on bonds issued by Iraq’s government?“, Mark Baker writes:
“Iraq is a net external creditor, meaning its external assets are greater than its external liabilities. That means the nation is well positioned to service its debt obligations.”
More here. LINK
Samson: Al-Tamimi: The government completed the budget before it resigned, and we do not know why it was not sent
11:32 - 01/30/2020
Member of Parliamentary Finance Committee Magda Al-Tamimi said on Thursday that the government had implemented the 2020 budget law before its resignation, expressing surprise at the failure to send the budget after its completion.
Al-Tamimi said in a statement to "Information", that "the government could have sent the 2020 budget in mid-October last year," stating that "the government completed the budget before announcing its resignation, so what is the secret that prompted the government to refrain from sending the project?"
Al-Tamimi pointed out that "the government, by doing not to send the budget, may have hidden something that it does not want the parliament to see." The member of the Parliamentary Law Committee, Hussein Al-Oqabi, had confirmed in a previous statement/the information, the inability to send the caretaker government a draft budget law to parliament, stating that allowing the budget to be sent is a legal disaster. LINK
Samson: Parliamentary shock from "smuggled money" and calls for a strong government to settle it
13:44 - 01/30/2020
The deputy of Al-Fateh Alliance Fadel Jaber, Thursday, announced by the Supreme Council for Combating Corruption, described "shocking", stressing the need for a strong government to resolve the corruption files.
Jaber said in a statement to the "information", that "what the Anti-Corruption Council announced about the volume of funds stolen and smuggled out of Iraq constitutes a great shock to public opinion," surprising from "not paying attention to it and not highlighting the light and attention to it."
He added that "this dreadful amount is equivalent to the budgets of previous years, and a strong government must be formed to uncover the corrupt and hold them accountable and recover those enormous sums", noting that "opening these files will end the existence of large political blocs, but it will stand against the formation of a strong government."
Yesterday, Wednesday, the Supreme Council for Combating Corruption estimated the value of the funds stolen from Iraq. It is equivalent to investment budgets approved since 2003 until now. LINK
Don961: 76 countries participated in it .. Advisor to Mahdi: What Iraq earned from the Kuwait conference very little money and `` good intentions ''
Politics 01/20/2020 21:26 168 Editor: amm Baghdad today - Baghdad
Despite the participation of 76 countries during its contract in 2018, the Prime Minister's advisor for financial affairs, Mazhar Muhammad Salih, affirmed that Iraq only received “moral support and goodwill” from the Kuwait International Conference for the Reconstruction of Iraq.
Saleh said in a statement to the Iraqi News Agency, and followed him (Baghdad today), "Iraq submitted the cost of reconstruction for the losses caused by ISIS, which is estimated at 88 billion dollars, in addition to providing an investment map contributed by foreign countries and companies during the Kuwait International Conference for Reconstruction". Iraq".
He added that "the Secretariat of the Council of Ministers was running the work at the time and submitted a document of pledges," noting that "40% of countries answered the document that was submitted and 60% did not answer."
He stressed that "the countries that answered the document were limited to granting commercial loans," noting that "the Kuwait conference supported Iraq morally only."
He pointed out that "all credit facilities and investments in order to rebuild what was destroyed by the war were just pledges that did not take their way to the course of implementation."
He explained that "what was previously implemented was called (the Stability Cell) provided by the United Nations, the World Bank, international agencies and the European Union gave aid to the liberated areas to return the displaced, build the main infrastructure and remove mines," noting that "the amount of this aid does not exceed two billion dollars."
". He added, "The government is following up the file of the Kuwait conference, but some of them present difficult conditions," noting that "the other side is hesitant, but these pledges exceeded only good intentions."
He continued, "There are no sums transferred to Iraq after the conference, except for a very weak thing that does not amount to the reconstruction of all liberated areas."
The pledges made by the countries participating in the Kuwait Conference for the Reconstruction of Iraq amounted to 30 billion dollars on the third and final day, so that such aid be in the form of loans, credit facilities and investments provided to Iraq in order to rebuild what was destroyed by the war.
In a press statement, Kuwaiti Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled Al-Sabah said at the time that "the commitment of the international community to Iraq was clear during the conference" with a total amount of 30 billion dollars. At that time, former Foreign Minister Ibrahim Al-Jaafari said, in the first reaction to the declaration, "We were hoping For an even greater amount. " LINK
Samson: Details Of The Economic Part Of “Deal Of The Century"
29th January, 2020
The US peace plan that President Donald Trump unveiled on Tuesday focuses on the economic side for a qualitative shift in Palestinian life in exchange for peace and security for Israel.
The economic aspect of the 80-page plan focuses on investing $ 50 million in the Palestinian territories and neighboring Arab countries over a 10-year period.
At the invitation of the Kingdom of Bahrain, the United States had put forward the economic aspect of the peace plan in the Middle East, under the title ( Peace for Prosperity: A New Vision for the Palestinian People ), at a conference held in Manama last June.
The text of the plan, published on the White House website, indicates that the successful signing of the agreement on the Israeli-Palestinian peace plan will have a significant impact on the region's economic prosperity, and notes that the international community has affirmed in Bahrain its commitment to the economic plan and its necessity, as is the case for the possibility of starting to Implement it as soon as the peace agreement is signed.
The plan includes three initiatives that will support the main pillars of Palestinian society, namely the people, the economy, and the government.
With the possibility of facilitating more than $ 50 billion in new investment over a decade, Peace for Prosperity is the most ambitious and comprehensive international effort to date for the Palestinian people.
And the American administration asserts that "the plan has the ability to implement a radical transformation of the West Bank and Gaza, and to open a new page in the history of the Palestinians, a specific page, not with hostility and loss, but through opportunity and dignity."
The first initiative - the economy:
The plan indicates that “the first initiative will unleash the economy of the Palestinian people, through property rights and contracts, the rule of law, anti-corruption measures, capital markets, an escalating tax structure, and low tariffs while reducing trade barriers,” adding that “this initiative envisions policy reforms alongside Investments in strategic infrastructure that improve the business environment and stimulate private sector growth. ”
The plan aims to make electricity, clean water, and digital services secure for hospitals, schools, homes, and businesses, at reasonable rates. And it confirms that "millions of billions of new investments will flow to various sectors of the Palestinian economy."
Implementation of the plan will allow "businessmen to enjoy increased access to capital," and the West Bank and Gaza Strip markets will be linked to major trading partners, including Egypt, Israel, Jordan and Lebanon. This will lead to the growth of the economy, which would lead to ending the unemployment crisis and turning the West Bank and Gaza into a center of opportunity.
The second initiative - Quality of Life for the People:
The second initiative enables the Palestinian people to achieve their aspirations, by leading new data and outputs based on education options, strengthening online education platforms while increasing professional and technical training, and expanding international scientific exchange.
This initiative will enhance the diversity of programs that will directly improve the ability of the Palestinian people, as it will strengthen the Palestinian educational system and ensure that students are able to achieve their academic goals and prepare for the labor market.
Equally important, the plan sees that "access to quality health care will be greatly improved, and Palestinian hospitals and clinics will be equipped with the latest healthcare technology and equipment."
In addition, the plan indicates that "new opportunities will be created for cultural and recreational activities that will improve the quality of life for the Palestinian people, whether from gardens and cultural institutions to sports facilities and libraries, and the projects of this initiative will enrich public life throughout the West Bank." West and Gaza. ”
The third initiative - the government:
The third initiative will focus on strengthening the Palestinian government, improving the capacity of the public sector, to serve its citizens and the ability of the private sector to grow.
This initiative will support the public sector in making the necessary improvements and reforms. To achieve long-term economic success.
The plan says that “commitment to support property rights, improve legal and regulatory frameworks for the work of companies, adopt a taxable, growth-oriented and enforceable tax structure, and develop strong capital markets, increase exports and foreign direct investment,” adding that “a fair judiciary would exist It is independent to ensure this growth, and new regulations and policies will help enhance government transparency and accountability. ”
The plan affirms that the international partners will work to end the dependence of the Palestinian public sector on donors and dependencies, and "put the Palestinians on a path to achieve financial sustainability in the long run, and that the institutions will be modernized and more efficient to facilitate the provision of the most effective basic services to citizens."
The plan believes that "with the support of the Palestinian leadership, this initiative can lead to a new era of prosperity and prosperity for the Palestinian people and institutionalize the policies necessary for the success of the economic transformation."
How to manage funds
The plan believes that "these three initiatives are more than just a vision for a promising future for the Palestinian people. They are also the basis for any actionable plan."
The plan defines the management of funds through "placing the capital raised through this international effort in a new fund managed by a multilateral development bank," noting that "accountability, transparency, anti-corruption and conditional guarantees will protect investments and ensure the allocation of capital efficiently and effectively."
She adds that "the leadership of the fund will work with the beneficiaries to set the outlines of annual investment, development goals and government reforms that will support the completion of the plan or project in the areas identified in the" peace for prosperity "framework.
As for grants, loans on concessional terms, and other forms of support, they will be distributed to projects that meet the specified criteria through a simplified process characterized by flexibility and accountability, according to the plan.
The plan sets conditions for the Palestinian leadership, saying that "in addition to the requirement for the state of Palestine to comply with all aspects of the Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement, the" peace for prosperity "agreement will be conditional on the following:
The establishment of the State of Palestine for transparent, independent and credit-worthy financial institutions capable of engaging in international market transactions in the same way as financial institutions in Western democracies.
Establish an appropriate system of governance to ensure the proper use of the funds.
Establishing a legal system that protects investments and fulfills trade expectations.
The plan indicates that "the United States will work with the Palestinian Authority to define economic projects for the city of Jerusalem and employ them in" peace for prosperity "projects.
The economic plan published on the White House website concludes that it "will enable the Palestinian people to build a society that they aspire to establish for the sake of future generations." It will allow the Palestinians to achieve a better future and pursue their dreams. We are confident that the international community will support this plan, but in the end, the ability to implement it lies in the hands of the Palestinian people.” LINK