Wed, Dec 22 2021 9:07 AM
Baghdad/National News Center
More than a year after the reform paper handed over by Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kazemi in October 2020, which was called the “White Paper”… Did this paper achieve real reforms or create new crises and problems in the country?
First, the economic expert, Salam Sumaisem, says that the economic reforms paper presented by Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kazemi at the end of last year 2020, which he called the “white paper”, after more than a year passed, the only thing that was implemented from it was to reduce the price of the Iraqi dinar. currency floatation.
The price is exorbitant, and
she added in her speech to “Sputnik”, this reduction allowed the Iraqi government to collect a quantity of liquidity through which it was able to pay the salaries of more than 4 million Iraqi employees, and the other thing in return for decreasing the currency rate was the exorbitant price that was paid socially, because the Iraqi employee and his owners Fixed incomes and the poor are the ones who have endured the devaluation of the Iraqi dinar by 25 percent, in addition to the severe inflation in the economy, as if the value of the salaries of those with fixed incomes decreased by 50 percent, in addition to the increase in unemployment rates.
The economic expert continued, here lies the big question about the benefit of these reforms, which did not bring us any economic recovery, but rather increased the unemployment rate and multi-cause poverty, according to what was indicated by the ESCWA report, which was issued recently.
Diversification of the economy
On the description of the Iraqi economic situation and how to get it out of the situation in which it is living, the economic expert said: If there is no diversification of the economy and areas of control over the areas of financial leakage that exist in the country due to corruption, we will not be able to any economic reform, there are still more than 250 thousand A fictitious person is paid salaries, and more than 50,000 people receive more than 3 monthly salaries, in addition to the fact that state real estate revenues are still not controlled, border areas, customs areas, and taxes, as long as the country remains in this situation, we cannot make an inventory of Iraqi funds.
The economic expert explained that there is an important issue, which is that Iraq is still one-sided because it depends on oil exclusively, which means that all the money that enters from oil resources goes to import, and since the Iraqi dinar is now low against the dollar, this means a very high In prices and inflation in the economy, what is the wisdom in the thing that did not achieve economic diversification or increase in the Iraqi production base and transparency in the collection of Iraqi taxes, especially customs duties and port fees, just as we did not achieve transparency in the distribution of salaries, and for this we have many obstacles that we cannot The reforms sheet allows us to apply the “white paper”.
The high rate of poverty
For his part, a member of the Iraqi National Charter, Abdul Qader Al-Nayel, says, “The White Paper” increased the suffering of citizens in terms of the high cost of living and the low exchange of the Iraqi currency against the dollar, and presented problems in the inflation of the market and the rise of foodstuffs, because Iraq imports them in foreign currency, and thus the impact of this rise on the livelihood of the citizen, which raised the poverty rate to 40%.
He added in his speech to “Sputnik”, and the Ministry of Planning in Al-Kazemi’s government recently admitted that nearly ten million Iraqis do not have their daily food, and this applied to children and the Iraqi family’s inability to provide milk for its children, which led the Iraqi family to live in a housing situation. This has affected the living conditions as well as the social problems, and this is due to the inability of the white paper to address the housing crisis that the Iraqis suffer from.
The health situation, Al-
Nayel pointed out that the living and social situation and the daily suffering are certainly accompanied by the health situation, which is getting worse day by day, due to the lack of hospitals and medicines and the high prices for them, and this also pushes the citizen to travel outside Iraq in search of treatment, which is another crisis that is not Only through the Iraqi passport, which is at the bottom of the international lists, and the difficulty of obtaining a visa to enter, but in terms of buying the dollar, whose percentage of the white paper has increased, which constituted an economic burden on everyone in his family who was sick, and it is known that in Iraq many diseases spread, forcing them to leave the country for treatment On top of these are cancers and deformed children in Fallujah as a result of the occupation’s use of internationally prohibited weapons and other diseases
The member of the National Charter explained that the citizen’s livelihood has become very difficult and the white paper did not provide a solution, but was another reason for the narrowing of living and this is the main reason that directly affected the social situation of Iraqi families, as the divorce rate rose and here we are talking about crazy rates, where tens of thousands of divorce cases The family disintegrates every month, and the main reason is the high cost of living, and the inability to pay the children’s school fees, obtain a separate house or meet the needs of the wife, which pushes the spouses to separate, even though they leave behind children who are lost due to divorce.
The Iraqi Ministry of Planning said that it had completed the preparation of the reform and recovery plan, which will be two years old and operate on 3 tracks, according to what the spokesman for the Ministry of Planning, Abdul-Zahra Al-Hindawi, said in an interview with the official “Al-Sabah” newspaper.
Al-Hindawi said: "After raising the dollar exchange rate, the inflation index rose by 4.9 to 5 percent, while the initial poverty indicators rose by 26 to 27 percent."
He revealed that the Ministry of Planning has completed the preparation of a “reform and recovery plan”, responding to the challenges, and taking into account “the complex crisis that the country is experiencing, which is the economic crisis and the health crisis, and the resulting increase in poverty, prices, inflation and the state of economic downturn that afflicted the country.”
The spokesman explained that the reform and recovery plan will be two years old, from 2021 to 2023, and will work on 3 tracks.
He said that the first track in this plan is economic, which includes improving the level of the economy and supporting the private sector, and the second is social, which includes supporting the level of services in the field of health and education, the return of the displaced and empowering women.
Last March, the Iraqi Ministry of Planning announced a decrease in the poverty rate in the country to 25 percent of the total population, down from 31.7 percent in 2020.
The poverty rate increased during the first phase of the emergence of the Corona pandemic in the first half of the year 2020 to 31.7%, but it returned to decline thanks to the procedures for lifting the curfew and the return of work and activities to their normal state, which led to a decrease in the percentage to 25%, according to a previous statement by the spokesperson for the Ministry of Planning. .
At the time, Al-Hindawi said that “the number of poor people in Iraq is less than 10 million people,” out of the country’s total population of 40 million and 150 thousand people, according to the latest official census.
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