Member of Parliamentary Finance: The budget cannot be approved unless a new agreement is reached between Erbil and Baghdad

Member of Parliamentary Finance: The budget cannot be approved unless a new agreement is reached between Erbil and Baghdad

2023-05-31 02:43

Member of Parliamentary Finance - The budget cannot be approved unless a new agreement is reached between Erbil and BaghdadShafaq News/ Today, Wednesday, a member of the Iraqi Parliament representing the Finance Committee, Jamal Cougar, held the federal government responsible for delaying the legislation of the budget law, calling for the need to pass the law in accordance with the political agreement concluded between Erbil and Baghdad.

Committee member Jamal Cougar told Shafaq News agency, “The delay in approving the draft budget law is due to Baghdad (the federal government) retracting its agreements with the regional government regarding the paragraphs related to Kurdistan within the budget law, due to its silence until now on the amendments that have been made to the region’s paragraphs within budget, and what happens is outside its will and control.”

And he indicated that “the budget law can only be enacted after reaching a new agreement between Baghdad and Erbil regarding the region’s share within the budget.”

Cougar continued by saying, “We are not with passing the budget according to the policy of arm-twisting and disagreements, because this may have repercussions on political stability. We are with passing the law with the agreement of all political parties.”

The economist, Nabil Al-Marsoumi, said, yesterday, Tuesday, that the coordination framework that includes the ruling Shiite political forces in the country submitted a new proposal regarding paragraphs 13 and 14 in the budget for the Kurdistan Region.

Al-Marsoumi, in a post on social networking sites “Facebook” today, quoted private sources of this proposal.

According to what is stipulated in the proposal, it is for the Kurdistan Region to deliver 400 thousand barrels of oil per day to the National Oil Marketing Company “SOMO”, and to coordinate the sale of crude with this company as well.

The sources stated that in the event that it is not possible to export oil through the ports of Turkey, Erbil will deliver the oil to Baghdad, and the Ministry of Oil, in turn, will find alternatives to selling Kurdistan’s oil or using it internally.

The sources pointed out that the federal government is committed to paying 400,000 barrels of oil from the sale of oil to Erbil in the event that it receives it from the region, provided that the money from oil sales is placed and recycled internally in an account belonging to the Federal Ministry of Finance.

It is noteworthy that the Presidency and the Kurdistan Regional Government have recently objected to the amendments made to the paragraphs related to the region in the financial budget that the Iraqi Parliament seeks to approve, describing it as a violation of the laws, the constitution, and the agreements concluded between Erbil and Baghdad, which resulted in the formation of the current federal government headed by Muhammad Shia al-Sudani.

The President of the Kurdistan Region, Nechirvan Barzani, had expressed “deep concern” about what he called the changes that affected the paragraphs of the Iraqi general budget bill related to the constitutional rights of the Kurdistan Region, and said that he rejected them “completely.”

And before that, the Prime Minister of the Kurdistan Regional Government, Masrour Barzani, said, “A group in the Finance Committee of the Iraqi Parliament made changes to the draft federal budget, violating a prior agreement we concluded with the State of Prime Minister Muhammad Shia al-Sudani and his government,” noting that “the agreement that is the cornerstone For cooperation between Erbil and Baghdad, and everyone must respect its clauses.

Last Thursday, the Parliamentary Finance Committee voted to oblige the Kurdistan Region to pay 10% on a monthly basis from the salaries deducted to its employees, while this was included in the budget amendments that are being discussed.

A member of the Parliamentary Finance Committee, Mustafa Sanad, also confirmed the committee’s vote to amend paragraphs related to the region in the budget law, regarding its delivery of oil, while pointing to the withdrawal of the Democratic Party bloc representatives from the meeting.

And the Iraqi Council of Ministers approved, on the 13th of last March, the largest financial budget in the history of the country, which exceeded 197 trillion and 828 billion Iraqi dinars (about 152.2 billion dollars), with a total deficit of 63 trillion Iraqi dinars, taking advantage of the rise in oil prices globally. , which constitutes more than 95% of the country’s financial revenues, amid objections from financial and legal experts regarding the budget items, but it has not yet been approved due to disagreements.