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Tuesday, August 25, 2020
Calls for sovereign funds for future generations
Baghdad/ Hussein Faleh
Experts in the economic affairs, that the transformation of the Iraqi national economy from rent to production, is an urgent necessity in light of the successive crises, which hit the world's economies, which are directly affected by Iraq, due to the lack of diversification of its sources of production, while calling for the importance of establishing sovereign funds for future generations to serve the country in a period of financial crises.
"The Iraqi economy is still a rent-a-country economy," said economist Bassem Antoine in a statement to Al-Sabah.
Experiences of previous years
"The price of a barrel of oil fell in 2008 from $147 to $30 per barrel, and Iraq did not benefit from this lesson, and sovereign funds were not established to store money for generations to come, and it was repeated in 2014 and now as well," he said.
He stressed that the House of Representatives should not only legislate, but its role must also be supervisory, as it is representative of the people, pointing out that "there are departments that have balances in banks that do not disclose them, and did not provide final accounts, and the audit of the Financial Supervisory Office, which reveals the places of waste in the money."
"Oil-producing countries like Norway have oil, but they have a sovereign fund of $870 billion for generations to come," Antoine said, noting that "borrowing from abroad should be for productive investment purposes, not just distributing salaries and ending."
It's a matter of time.
"There are 8 million Iraqi citizens working in the private sector," he said, adding that "the best solution for unemployment and poverty eradication is the development of the industrial sector, which contributes to the employment of as many workers as possible."
A new salary pattern
"The government must bring in an authentic national private sector to overcome this economic crisis," he said, adding that the loans would not be granted if the projects being borrowed were not specified. "The rest goes to salaries," he said, adding that "a new pattern of salary creation should be developed, and the loan will be productive and not a consumer loan."
"The IMF is now not asking for a study and the feasibility of the projects on which Iraq will be granted loans, and the amounts will not be given without calculations," he said, adding that "the investor will not come to Iraq randomly, wants a democratic legal attractive environment without blackmail and others."
Develop strategic insights
"Iraq has not benefited from the period of oil price rise over the past years by investing money and putting it in a sovereign fund that can be used during the fall in oil prices or in the event of a severe financial crisis," Abdul Aziz said.
"The export oil sector is still dominating the Iraqi economy, which has left other productive sectors lagging behind," she said, calling for strategic visions to activate production plants and revive local industry and agriculture, to be active in supporting the national economy and contributing to the movement of the wheel.
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