Experts: The absence of guarantees paid by {40} trillion dinars outside the banks


Establishment of a company to secure the deposits of citizens
Baghdad / Huda al-Azzawi
The Central Bank of Iraq resorted to the issuance of the system of guarantee bank deposits, including the bank to grant a license to practice a guarantee for a joint stock company established in accordance with the provisions of the Companies Law, a system that was welcomed by the economic circles because of the weakness in the mobilization of funds and deposit with banks to take their way to various investment channels, Especially after the large losses caused by the financial crises in the state budget.

The participation of banks is mandatory
The Director General of the Legal Department of the Central Bank, Mustafa Ghaleb, told the "morning": "The Central Bank is currently working according to the feasibility study of technical and economic and legal establishment of the Iraqi Company to ensure deposits with a mixed contribution of government and private banks with the Department of registration of companies in the Ministry of Commerce ,

According to the provisions of the Companies Law No. 21 of 1997, "noting that" this institution aims to achieve the public interest of the community and protect the funds of depositors and increase their confidence in the banking sector existing in the State, away from profit. "

He explained that the proposed capital of the company, amounting to 100 billion dinars, 55 percent of its nominal capital of the contribution of public and private banks and branches of foreign banks, including the minimum required for the contribution of the state of 25 percent, while the remaining 45 percent will be put to public subscription on the basis of the provisions of Article 39 of the companies mentioned law ,

"pointing out that" the participation of Iraqi banks , which is compulsory to ensure the continued existence of sufficient balance within the fund and use it to provide financial cover to ensure that the assets of depositors in banks licensed by the Central Bank of Iraq within the country. "

compensation according to the circumstances

"The company’s money can be invested in the field of deposits with banks, such as fixed deposits and the purchase of government securities such as treasury bills and bonds, and remittances issued by the Central Bank of Iraq, which is purchased from the secondary market, and can be invested in borrowing from banks or issue bonds A loan to support its capital and its own resources, "stressing that" the company will pay compensation for deposits with banks according to amounts and depending on the economic conditions of the country. "

He concluded by saying that "the company’s certificate of incorporation will be announced by the Ministry of Commerce after the Central Bank completes all the requirements for incorporation with the registration and public subscription department in accordance with the Companies Law referred to."

Doubts and concerns of depositors

Regarding the culture of dealing with the banking system, the financial adviser to the Prime Minister Dr. Mohammed Saleh said to the morning that dealing depends on the awareness of the Iraqi financial system, considering private sector projects and the availability of job opportunities that can contribute to reducing unemployment rates.

The system of deposits adopted by the Central Bank has been approved by the Council of Ministers for more than two years, which is expected to see the year 2018 achievement, aims to encourage citizens to save in banks rather than compactness, "noting that the percentage of cash out of banks up to 80 percent , So as to attract them to Government and private banks, must provide real guarantees that encourage depositors to save.

Offering Contracting Parties

For his part, professor of monetary at the University of Mustansiriya Dr. Faleh al-Zubaidi told the "morning" that the banking system to clarify the nature of work on how to invest the funds of unemployed citizens and operate transparently, without any ambiguity or ambiguity, within the legal contracts that preserve the rights of contracting parties through The company offered its shares to the public,

with the aim of seeking to increase its capital and contribute to attract financing for the sale of its shares or issue new shares to support the current capital.

Explaining that some of the amount of money outside the banking system and estimated at 40 trillion dinars, a normal situation because Iraq from developing countries known to increase the proportion of currency in circulation outside the banking system,

"pointing out that" the investment of this huge amount of money by the banking system or Companies will employ money will contribute to the revitalization of the Iraqi economy and provide job opportunities to reduce the high unemployment rates rampant in the country. "

Increasing supervision and supervision
In terms of the most important steps taken by the Central Bank to withdraw funds Almknzah to financial institutions and banking, the Director of Payments in the Central Bank, Subhi Abdul Karim Mohammed, "Sabah" that the project of localization of salaries,

which will contribute to raising awareness of banking and saving and reliance on technical methods in The transfer of funds and not rely on cash, will work to determine the conversion rate from the dinar to the dollar in cards issued locally,

"noting that the card is used outside Iraq to be a catalyst for citizens to be used in any place where it is resolved as well as the inside of Best services ", adding that the financial inclusion strategy , which will soon be launched by the bank aims to access financial and banking services for every citizen in line with their needs."

The payments manager is expected to contribute to the establishment of strategic projects in the country with the financial and banking institutions.

Plans for the interaction of the productive and service sectors


To achieve sustainable development
BAGHDAD / Hussein Tgb
is to achieve sustainable economic development is the goal of everyone in the public and private sectors to maximize financial resources, where th
e next stage requires the fight against corruption and the provision of substantial amounts of economic and social development, and require a reduction of operating expenses.

Member of the Baghdad Economic Forum Majid Al-Soury stressed "the implementation of the provisions of the Constitution on financial and economic issues and the law of financial management and public debt, and the use of modern electronic information systems to implement and follow up all related to public finances of the

Development Goals

He pointed out to the "morning" on the sidelines of an economic symposium that "maximizing resources other than oil and gas resources, after the confusion experienced by the management of public funds, and the failure to achieve the objectives of economic and social development, can not be only maximize the resources of oil and gas itself, With the rational use of those resources for economic and social development. "

He also called for the creation of economic policies and plans for interaction and cooperation between the financial, production and commercial sectors of the state and the commitment to follow up their implementation in order to expand the local production base to meet domestic needs and encourage exports in the public and private sectors.

With significant amounts and the provision of large amounts in foreign currency, and mitigate the impact of external factors on the
Iraqi economy .

Implementation responsibilities

"The rational use of financial resources requires a clear identification of the Iraqi economy, defining the strategy of economic and social development, setting the necessary plans for implementing them according to a timetable, defining the responsibilities of implementation, monitoring and monitoring their implementation,"

he said, noting that "the five-year plan has been adopted Social economic economy, which is the most economic policy in line with the requirements of the Iraqi constitution and its trends in the use of modern economic bases, and is able to achieve the economic and social development required of all segments of the
Iraqi people .

Development Bank

He pointed out the importance of "bold restructuring of the financial institutions in Iraq, especially government banks, including the integration of commercial banks in one bank, as well as all banks specialized in a large development bank, with restructuring administrative and financial, and provide the necessary necessary and the principle of separation of management from Ras Money for all government and private banks, while activating the role of the development bank in the development of local production, to cover the bulk of the needs of the
domestic market .

He said that the rational use of wealth requires the control of foreign trade and border crossings, land, air and sea, which is an area of ​​financial corruption and an important factor in the disruption of domestic production and economic development and looting many of the government resources that may be directed to cover the financial needs of the government, Border control is a very important element in fighting corruption, maximizing state resources, and protecting the product
Local "

The local market The image of" the importance of the trend towards restructuring public production institutions, and develop their productive capacity, by all possible means, including participation with local and foreign private sectors, to cover quite a bit of the needs of the domestic market, Special production and service in all areas and to enable it to cooperate with the sector public. "

He urged" to achieve tax policy to redistribute income fairly, and to encourage local production and protection, and create a tax environment that encourages domestic and foreign investment, and the provision of services of Basic necessary, especially to solve the problem of electricity, and to provide all help to reduce local production costs, in order to enable it to compete with foreign products, improve product quality. "

Strategic planning .. Measures to contain unemployment


The distribution of jobs between the public and private sectors decreases

The efforts of specialists are concentrated in reducing the phenomenon of unemployment that kills the economic body, although it is a phenomenon that suffers from different countries in different countries, including Iraq. However, the elimination of it completely may face difficulty in investigating the difficulty of including a large segment of society in a suitable job that provides them with a normal life and a level of


Official statistics speak of a 10 to 11 percent unemployment rate in Iraq, as well as unofficial statistics of 15-20 percent of the unemployment rate compared to the population. Unemployment among women is 68 percent.

The causes of unemployment in the economic affairs member of the General Federation of Businessmen Hussein Rahim spoke to the "morning" on unemployment and its causes, stressing that it is achieved "corruption and the absence of strategic planning to accommodate graduates from universities and government colleges and private, especially scientific specialties,

noting that the Ministry of Health in 2017 announced The appointment of 85 doctors only at the time of graduating a large number of doctors in seven colleges of the official.

" Solutions and proposals

"The most important solution is to eliminate administrative and financial corruption and as a management and government should seek to eliminate them, but in reality we do not find concrete work, and encourage young people to establish small and medium enterprises, we find one
solution," Rahim said .

He pointed out the importance of "supporting the private sector and promoting it to improve production and prevent the importation of similar materials for what can be produced locally, and to reduce the indiscriminate import especially for foodstuffs and agriculture, and one of the priorities of supporting the local product is to prevent imports to find labor opportunities and support agricultural products to stimulate the work of the agricultural sector" .

Sustainable development and Rahim "As for sustainable development, the stagnation comes from the spread of unemployment, the movement of the market depends mainly on the ability of the individual to buy and if he is unemployed or even low-income remains sustainable development paralyzed can not move a step."

He called for "re-employment of the service council for the purpose of distributing graduates to the departments and placement of some of them to the private sector for the purpose of expanding the capacity of absorption of graduates, technicians and non-professionals from employment, providing many jobs for unskilled workers in private sector factories, The ability of the rest of the leather, textile, agricultural
and other industries .

He pointed out that "the stagnation of energy work led to the suspension of most of the private sector factories, pointing out that some of these reasons can perpetuate the absence of programs of sustainable development and its role in strengthening the economy and increase unemployment suffered by most
young people."
Rahim said that "

Baghdad ( The Central Bank of Iraq (CBI) currency auction on March 18 registered $200,041,909 in sales, a -0.03% volume decline from the US $200,110,472 sold by Iraqi Dinar, credit and transfer at the previous auction held on March 15. The latest auction was attended by 45 banks …

By Wassim Bassem for Al Monitor. Any opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News

Mohammad Hassan worries about the steady decline in the number of customers who come to his shop in Baghdad’s Souk al-Safafeer, the legendary copper market in the neighborhood of Bab al-Agha. The shop sports Hassan’s handmade copper products, mostly miniatures of Iraq’s symbols and monuments, such as the palm tree, the Lion of Babylon, the Malwiya Minaret in Samarra and Mosul’s Great Mosque of al-Nuri, which the Islamic State destroyed in 2017.

Hassan, who has been a coppersmith for 30 years, exercises a profession that dates to the Abbasid period of the 10th century, when many everyday goods, from lanterns to water bottles and from cups to knives and daggers, were made of copper. But those days are long gone.

“Industrial development has turned this profession into a business that only provides decorative objects,” Hassan told Al-Monitor in his shop in Souk al-Safafeer, which takes its name from the color of copper, “safra” in Arabic.

The situation is similar in all coppersmiths’ markets around the country. In Nasiriyah, a city on the banks of the Euphrates River about 370 kilometers (225 miles) southeast of Baghdad, the copper market, once an important place of commerce and socialization, is now almost nonexistent. The same goes for Mosul’s market, Basra’s Musa al-Attiyah market and Najaf’s Safafeer market, which are turning into mere memories.

Coppersmith Haider Khafaji told Al-Monitor that the famous Safafeer market in the southern province of Babil has now faded behind the modern shops, but in the past it was packed with tourists who would head there after visiting the nearby historic city of Babylon about 20 kilometers (12 miles) away.

Khafaji said, “I started working in this profession 40 years ago, back when there was significant demand for copperware, when copper was an important commercial commodity and copper goods were a sign of status.” He added that there are just a few coppersmith shops left and most double now as blacksmiths.

“Our work today is limited to making gifts and souvenirs that hardly ever get sold,” Khafaji added. “We seriously fear that this craft will disappear, as the new generation is not keen to learn the craft.”

Member of parliament Maysoon al-Damluji, a member of the legislature’s committee on culture, told Al-Monitor that the days when people used copper in most of their daily goods are gone, but that the craft of the coppersmiths, part of the Iraqi intangible heritage, should be maintained.

“[The coppersmith shops and markets are part of] the identity of Iraqi cities,” he said, expressing concern that Iraq’s cities, which have been badly damaged in the wars and battles that have taken place in Iraq and have been subject to poor urban planning, have lost their historical heritage.

Damluji said one of the reasons copper markets are disappearing is the “law issued by the Ministry of Health in the 1950s preventing the use of copper utensils for eating, as it causes poisoning.”

Another reason, according to Damluji, is related to “the unstable security and political situation in Iraq, as the Iraqi state has allocated its budget for wars since the 1990s, leaving no room for projects to preserve cultural heritage.”

Ibrahim Khalil al-Alaf, professor of modern history at the University of Mosul, told Al-Monitor that the craft was also disappearing because local and handmade goods were unable to hold their ground against foreign copper miniatures of Iraqi monuments that flood the markets and are sold at lower prices. These come from China and the government has no regulation or subsidies to protect the local products. “The Safafeer market in Mosul has been in steady decline,” he added.

In many Safafeer markets, coppersmiths themselves have begun trading in imported goods, no longer relying on creating their own. Given the lack of financial support from the government for this dying profession and the reluctance of the new generation to master this craft in which profits are low, coppersmiths are becoming a part of disappearing intangible heritage.

Alaf said he deeply regrets how Mosul’s heritage has been falling apart before his eyes. “We need to preserve historical monuments using modern restoration techniques and learning from the experience of developed countries in urban and market planning,” he said.

“The Directorate of Heritage and Antiquities should develop a comprehensive national strategy and cooperate with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization because the Safafeer market in every city is not only a market but a museum preserving this profession and all Iraqi handicrafts,” Alaf said.

Meanwhile, Amran Obeidi, the director of media and spokesman at the Ministry of Culture, told Al-Monitor that the ministry believes preserving Baghdad’s Safafeer market, the largest of the copper markets in the country, does not fall under its responsibilities according to laws and regulations in force. “Maintaining the Safafeer market is Baghdad municipality’s job. Our work in the ministry is only limited to technical consulting,” he said. “The Safafeer markets are Iraq’s cultural introduction to the world, as well as they showcase a now rare profession that has long been part of the Iraqi folklore.”

Obeidi said the ministry classified Rashid Street, at the end of which the Safafeer market in Baghdad is located, as a historical area, so any change in buildings there requires the ministry’s approval. “It is particularly important to preserve this market because it specializes in creating cultural handicrafts,” he said.

Hakim Abdul Zahra, the director of media and public relations in the Baghdad municipality, told Al-Monitor that the city is trying to ensure that the old markets do not disappear. Some store owners try to reconstruct the historical stores and turn them into another business, which is illegal. “We have plans, in coordination with the Heritage Authority, to repair and restore houses and ancient markets as soon as our financial situation improves,” Zahra said.

(Picture credit: Jonathan Zander)

Barzani Party: Oil files, budget and Article 140 has not been resolved with Baghdad

The Kurdistan Democratic Party, headed by Massoud Barzani, Saturday, the most outstanding issues between Baghdad and Erbil, despite the declaration of agreements on the opening of airports and ports, indicating that the agreement on managing the oil file and the application of Article 140 and determine the proportions of Kurdistan, the most prominent of these issues.

"The files of oil management and determine the federal gross product in Kurdistan and the application of Article 140 of the Constitution on the disputed areas and the proportion of the region of the budget is still stuck until after the elections despite the agreements," MP Najeeb Najib said in an interview with local media. Declared ".

"The agreement on the opening of airports and the delivery of border crossings entered into force after the arrival of federal officials from the departments of passports, customs, taxes and security to airports and ports."

She said that "Baghdad deposited about 400 billion dinars in the central bank in Arbil as a provision of salaries to employees of the region, but it needs exclusive approval from Prime Minister Haider Abadi to spend in the coming days."…%D8%A9-%D9%88/

Washington and Baghdad begin negotiations to "adapt" the US presence

"The US military presence in Iraq after the end of the organization" Daash "criminal at a time of growing popular and political demands for the withdrawal of US and foreign troops, while reviving the denial of the presence of US military bases .

"After the battle of Mosul and the announcement of the expulsion of Saddam from Iraq, negotiations between Iraq and the international coalition led by the United States on the reduction of foreign forces in Iraq began,"

said Ihsan al-Shammari, head of the Center for Political Thinking in a statement published by the Saudi daily Asharq Al-Awsat. Iraq, which was providing support and support to the Iraqi forces through advisers. "

Al-Shammari added that "what happened is that the talks in this regard have not been activated, but now the serious steps have been taken in this regard as the two parties entered into talks in this direction."

He pointed out that "the most important in these negotiations is the reactivation of the strategic framework treaty, 2008 during Maliki’s first term but Americans froze during his second term. "

Al-Shammari explained that "the current discussions are taking two tracks. The first is to re-adapt the US presence in Iraq according to the Strategic Framework Agreement which includes areas and fields, including training, processing, logistical and intelligence support as well as deterrence, while the second track is to reduce the number of American advisors in Iraq. New between the parties, "denying" the presence of US bases inside Iraqi territory "

Asked about the concept of deterrence in the context of the Strategic Framework Agreement, al-Shammari said that "the deterrence is the possibility of Iraq need air strikes against the organization of Daadash, who is still trying to pressure on the Syrian border and thus risk remains."…A%D9%8A%D9%81/

Abadi: We will chase the big thieves and recover the money they seized


Received a call from the US Vice President and held a meeting with the directors of Baghdad
Baghdad / follow-up morning
Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi vowed to hunt down the big thieves who seized the state land and citizens’ properties, stressing that he would challenge any law that could benefit from these thieves.

As he accelerated the completion of services projects in the areas of the outskirts of Baghdad and provide the necessary funding and financial allocations that have priority, US President Mike Pence, during a telephone conversation, led by Abadi in the victory against the «urging», reiterated his country’s continued support to Iraq in all areas.

According to a statement issued by the Prime Minister’s Office, the Prime Minister, Dr. Haider al-Abadi, held a wide-ranging meeting with the district directors and municipal units in the city of Baghdad.

He said during the meeting that "Iraq has gone through a difficult stage and an existential and economic challenge. And we must work now to harness all the national capabilities and capabilities to provide services to citizens after the great victory achieved with the most sacrifices and the least potential ».

During the meeting, Abadi called on the district directors and municipal units in the city of Baghdad to "follow the field for every small and large, and be true to the promises in providing services and not to give promises can not be met, and away from partisan loyalties or work for electoral reasons at the expense of quality."

"The need to make maximum use of the available resources and the national effort." He stressed that "collection should not be limited to providing appropriate services, and not be tax to take payments without services and it is very necessary to stop waste in order to reach services to eligible citizens."

Abadi said: "We must take into consideration the need of citizens, but we must pursue the big thieves who seized the state land and the property of citizens, while at the same time distinguish them from the poor citizens in need of housing.

And also appealed the amnesty law, which unfortunately included the kidnappers and criminals, "vowing to pursue" the big thieves and recover the money they seized. "

Al-Abbadi listened to a detailed explanation of the reality of the services provided by Amina Baghdad and the Governor of Baghdad and the managers of the districts and municipal units.

The solutions were put in place and the allocations were made in the field of services, water networks, sewerage, tiling and other basic services inside and outside the city of Baghdad.

The Prime Minister urged the speedy completion of service projects in the outskirts
of Baghdad and the provision of funding for financial allocations, which is a priority.

He also stressed the rehabilitation and completion of hospital projects in the areas of seven wells and laboratories, in addition to the launch of allocations for cleaning efforts in the capital and other provinces.

The meeting was attended by the Minister of Planning, Reconstruction and Housing and the deputies of a number of ministries and officials in the service departments.

The Prime Minister, Dr. Haider Abadi, on Thursday, the opening of the airports of Sulaymaniyah and Erbil for international aviation after the completion of legal and constitutional procedures by the federal control of the two airports, according to a statement of the Information Office.

On the other hand, Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi received a telephone call from US Vice President Mike Bens, praised Bens leadership of Abbadi in the victory against «Da’ash», stressing the continued support of his country to Iraq and renewed US President’s victory, .

"He expressed his admiration for the vision of the Prime Minister and his country leadership and for achieving community cohesion and his keenness to guarantee the rights of all components of the Iraqi people that he saw through the visit of Dr. Haider Al-Abbadi to Mosul."

He also praised the government’s steps in reopening Sulaymaniyah and Erbil airports, And stressed the support of his country for the unity of Iraq and sovereignty, "noting that" the leadership of Dr. Haider Abadi in this file proved to all the Iraqi people not to distinguish it to the component without another, "according to a statement to the media office of the Prime Minister.

Abadi stressed his keenness to consolidate democracy in Iraq and strengthen the institutions of the state and the importance of continuing the citizenship project to overcome sectarian and racist policies, praising the aspirations of young Iraqis aspiring to hold free and fair elections for a new Iraq.

The local government in Kurdistan aims to solve all the problems between the center and the region and to feel the Kurdish people that is an essential part of the state and the Iraqi society », noting that« the government is paying salaries of the staff of the region »,

and Abadi« he now has a strong army and military institution and the government is working On The further strengthening of the rest of the state institutions and the goal is to reach a sober political situation to prevent foreign interference, which seeks to weaken the sovereignty of the state ».

The Prime Minister also confirmed during the telephone call to the US Vice President, "the plan that was put in place to reduce the number of American advisers and trainers in Iraq after a crushing victory over the terrorist advocate, and that the presence of these trainers to support the Iraqi military and security institutions with international expertise in training and technical support»

Abadi stressed «the importance of consolidating economic and trade relations between the two countries, as Iraq hopes the US administration to encourage the private sector to invest in Iraq».

By John Lee.

The Iraqi government has freportedly revoked a contract with a Kurdish-owned garbage removal firm in Kirkuk, resulting in a garbage crisis in the oil-rich province.

The owner of the business, Khalid Shinke, told Kurdistan 24 that the Iraqi government canceled the contract with his company on 28th February, leading to the suspension of garbage collection across Kirkuk.

He added that the central government in Baghdad still owes his company 12 billion IQD.

(Source: Kurdistan24)

This article was originally published by Niqash. Any opinions expressed are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.

By Hayman Hassan.

The Iraqi Kurdish authorities owe many state employees months in back pay. The citizens of Iraqi Kurdistan owe the government a variety of fees. But right now, it seems nobody is getting anything.

In the semi-autonomous, northern region of Iraqi Kurdistan, there are a lot of debts to be paid – and everybody owes somebody money.

One of the most pressing issues is that of the partial payment of salaries to those employed by the government. Iraqi Kurdish teachers have recently been protesting about this again, causing the closure of some local schools, and other state employees have done so in the past.

As a result of its financial problems – caused, partially by the security crisis, a fall in oil prices and ongoing wrangling about their share of the national budget – the government of Iraqi Kurdistan decided to “save” employees’ salaries in 2016. This means that a part of any employee’s salary was paid to them as usual and the other part was withheld, with a view to returning it later. It was a debt that the Iraqi Kurdish government owed to its people.

Earlier this month, the authorities decided again to set up a whole new department – the department of government debt – to deal with this issue. They had announced they would do this last year but nothing really happened.

The department should log all of the money that the Iraqi Kurdish government owed and also what was owed to them. The staff salary “savings” are meant to be part of this but it’s hard to know how the department could enforce any exchange of cash. As yet, there is no dedicated bank account to deal with this issue and nobody knows when repayments might happen.

“The Kurdish government should pay their people back around US$10 billion, and then another US$10 billion to other investors,” Ali Hama Salih, the deputy head of the Iraqi Kurdish parliament’s finance committee and a member of the anti-corruption Change movement, told NIQASH. “But it has no mechanism in place to pay anything back.”

“When the government’s revenues increase again, it is going to pay those debts,” says Safeen Dizayee, the spokesperson for the Iraqi Kurdish government and a member of the region’s biggest political party, the Kurdish Democratic Party.

Over the past four years, nobody has managed to figure out how to pay government employees back what they are owed. One of the ideas suggested by provincial councils late last year was that the government deduct the money they owe citizens from citizens’ bills for power and water and for other payments such as traffic fines.

“We’ve suggested this project two times now,” says Khanzad Younis, a member of the Erbil provincial council. “But the government refused, saying such a thing cannot be implemented right now. That is despite the fact that we outlined all of the specific things the government and citizens should do to have these debts repaid.”

The Kurdish government told the council members that it would all take too long and that too much information was required, that nobody had. It also requires all employees to have bank accounts, which they do not. Additionally, the government still only has enough money to pay the proportion of salaries it is liable for.

Another proposal says that a bank account should be opened, and all of the savings should be deposited in there eventually. This would be impossible currently and anyway, the ministry of finance has all of the details of what is owed. Still, the idea was thought to be a symbolic step in the right direction. However, this has not happened either.

And there is an added complication. In November 2017, the government waived some payments that local tax payers were supposed to make to it. This includes some payments for water and power, marriage license fees and loans for housing, saying that those who had been impacted badly by the fight against the extremist group known as the Islamic State should not have to pay these.

The debt that locals owe the Kurdish government apparently totals around IQD3 billion (around US$2 million) and is slowly being paid back via small monthly instalments, Dizayee explains. But this is nothing when compared to the larger amount of back pay owed to employees.

“Given that the government is the executive authority in Iraqi Kurdistan it could issue new laws that allow it to collect those debts from citizens faster,” speculates Khalid Hayder, an assistant professor of economics at the University of Sulaymaniyah in Iraqi Kurdistan. “As for what the government owes its citizens, it is under pressure to pay that money back at some stage. If it doesn’t this creates a serious lack of trust and endangers the whole region’s economic future.”

Right now, it seems the Kurdish government is waiting for the federal authorities in Baghdad to pay them their share of the federal budget. But, he adds, when it comes, that is most likely to be used to pay the outgoing salaries of citizens and not the debts.

The Iraqi government passed its 2018 budget earlier this month, and although wrangling continues as to whether it is actually workable, one thing does appear to have been made clear: The percentage of the income that the Kurds get has dropped. Politicians have already warned that they won’t be getting enough to pay back the debts they owe their own employees and voters. The debtors’ standoff looks likely to continue.