The Iraqi currency exported…to where?
The Iraqi currency exported…to where?
Introduction: Shawan Zangana
The Iraqi currency issued is the banknotes issued by the Central Bank for circulation (i.e. printed), with the exception of cash in the vaults of the Central Bank, and is usually found in the vaults of local banks, and in the possession of citizens. The size of this monetary mass depends on the economic situation in Iraq, from Where the growth of the gross domestic product, the speed of monetary circulation, and the level of prices therein, however, the monetary data of the Central Bank of Iraq confirm that the increase in the volume of the monetary mass exported does not fall under the influence of the usual economic factors, which were mentioned above, but rather is controlled by the political mood and random trends. The monetary policy pursued by the Central Bank and the Ministry of Finance, despite the Central Bank’s claim that the quantities of Iraqi currency are printed according to the needs of the Iraqi economy and within strict standards.
If we took a look at the volume of cash issued in previous years until this year, and according to the data of the Central Bank of Iraq, we would find a steady, unnatural increase in the volume of printing of the Iraqi dinar, which is not at all commensurate with the need and growth of the Iraqi economy, especially in the last five years, which was recorded in the last three years. The last of which is the pinnacle of printing.
Data on the issuance and printing of the Iraqi dinar, by year, showed the following:
January 2004: 6 trillion and 189 billion dinars
As of 2/2013 AD: 36 trillion and 845 billion dinars
K2/2014 AD: 40 trillion and 786 billion dinars
K2/2019 AD: 44 trillion and 374 billion dinars
K2/2020 AD: 51 trillion and 964 billion dinars
K2/2021 AD: 68 trillion and 948 billion dinars
K2/2022 AD: 78 trillion and 206 billion dinars
K2/2023 AD: 93 trillion and 511 billion dinars
November 2023 AD: 102 trillion and 601 billion dinars
The Iraqi dinar in Iraqi banks in October 2023: 9 trillion 37 billion dinars
Source: Central Bank of Iraq website/statistical website/monetary sector, www.cbi.iq
1- About 40 trillion dinars were issued during a period of 10 years, from 2/2004 AD, until 2/2014 AD, which is the period after the occupation, when a new Iraqi currency was printed, and this printing came to meet the market’s need, in accordance with the economic controls and mechanisms followed. about this.
2- The size of the issuance amounted to about 44 trillion dinars in February 2019, that is, a difference of 4 trillion Iraqi dinars over the period between February 2014 and February 2019, which took 5 years, with a growth rate of about 10%, and this issuance volume is the size of Printing minus the amount of destruction, and this limited increase in edition is consistent with the economic reality that Iraq has experienced due to the ISIS crisis.
3- From the beginning of 2019 AD until the beginning of 2020 AD, which is the period between Iraq’s emergence from the ISIS crisis and its entry into the Corona pandemic (Covid-19), which is the period of economic recession in Iraq, the volume of dinar issuance increased from about 44 trillion, to about 52 trillion dinars, with a difference About 7.5 trillion dinars, and the reason for resorting to this size of issuance may be the growing hoarding tendencies among citizens, due to the Corona virus, and the high rates of smuggling abroad, which led to a reduction in the monetary supply in the markets, and the increasing government demand for the dinar for the purpose of public spending.
4- The year 2020 AD is considered the year of the pandemic and economic recession, as the government imposed the economic closure, and the price of Iraqi oil fell below 20 dollars, so the government was forced at the end of it (December) to take the decision to deflate the dinar from 1,190 dinars to the dollar, to 1,460 dinars, and it appears This measure was not sufficient to cover the general budget deficit, so the government printed large quantities of dinars, until the volume of issuance reached 69 trillion dinars at the beginning of 2021 AD, and this means printing about 17 trillion dinars during the year 2020 AD.
5- The three years, from 2021 AD until the end of 2023 AD, were characterized by excessive issuance and printing of the local currency, as the volume of issuance increased from about 69 trillion dinars in January 2021 AD, to about 102 trillion dinars in November 2023 AD, an increase of about 33.5 trillion AD. These are the years that followed the decision to deflate the Iraqi dinar, and coincided with the imposition of the electronic platform on the Central Bank of Iraq, by the Financial Crimes Office of the US Department of the Treasury, which restricted the transfer of dollars that were smuggled to neighboring countries, led by Iran, through bank transfers. The Central Bank of Foreign Affairs, which led to smuggling operations being directed to local markets, causing a major and chronic imbalance in the dollar exchange rate in Iraq, from which Iraq is still suffering.
6- The printing of the dinar, in this huge quantity, in the last three years, in light of the aforementioned circumstances, came to meet the market need, and to compensate for the shortage in the local currency, which was under pressure, due to the decision to deflate on the one hand, and smuggling operations on the other hand, so it added a reason. Another is due to the high rates of inflation in Iraq, and this printing did not come due to the rapid circulation and circulation of the currency, to meet the needs of development and production, and this is an economic dilemma in itself.
7- The size of the monetary mass exported in October 2/2023 is about 102 trillion dinars, and the volume of what banks have of it is about 9 trillion in October 1/2023.. This means that there are about 93 trillion dinars in the possession of citizens, and in the markets, and it has appeared Reports and news, recently, indicate the loss of trillions of Iraqi dinars from Iraqi markets, and their smuggling to neighboring countries, but the Central Bank of Iraq denied that news, and claimed that the printing of the Iraqi currency comes according to the needs of the Iraqi economy and within strict standards, which is inconsistent with The reality of the situation… there is an actual shortage in the Iraqi monetary mass in the local markets, and the Central Bank also has, as evidenced by its delay in sending the Kurdistan region’s dues due to the shortage in the availability of its local monetary mass, and the printing of cash does not come in accordance with the needs of the Iraqi economy, as the Central Bank claims, as The economy did not witness growth in the gross domestic product in parallel with the high levels of currency printing, and the local markets did not witness tangible economic activity in conjunction with this steady increase in the printing of the dinar. Rather, the opposite is the case with the markets, as they suffer from a lack of cash and a lack of its circulation. Accordingly, the central bank does not He prints the dinar for local economic needs, but rather to compensate for the deficit resulting from smuggling operations, which he is, essentially, the main reason for their implementation and sustainability, without taking real deterrent measures to eradicate them.
8- The reasons for the lack of local monetary supply in Iraqi markets are many. Smuggling to neighboring countries, especially Iran, comes at the top of those reasons, and in conjunction with the smuggling of the dollar, in order to complete the smuggling cycle, without the need to exchange them for goods and benefits from outside the country. Inflation and deflation of the local currency also push the citizen to search for a safe haven for his dinar savings, in order to protect them and reap profits, so he buys the dollar, or gold and hoards it, or invests in stock exchanges, cryptocurrencies, and others, which was not the economic habit of Iraqis previously. Because of the stability of the local currency’s exchange rate at the time, perhaps the most dangerous thing in this area is that the citizen enters the spiral of “expectation inflation.” Whenever the citizen feels that his local currency will lose its purchasing power over time, he will experience future expectations of the dinar’s contraction, so he resorts to hedging. And constantly getting rid of its local monetary mass, this will cause a chronic contraction of the dinar and a chronic and continuous rise in inflation, and the prices of goods and utilities. This is the most severe dilemma in the world’s economies: that inflation is chronic and structural, as it will push the economy into chronic inflationary stagnation, which is difficult to address in the long term. Perspective.
The printing of the local currency (the Iraqi dinar) began since the restructuring of the Central Bank after the occupation, and it was carried out according to the needs of the Iraqi economy in its early days. However, printing has increased rapidly and steadily in the last five years, not to meet the needs of the economy, but rather to provide a mass of cash prepared for smuggling, and in plain sight. The government’s reputation and financial management.
The dinar was subjected to deflation due to the smuggling of the dinar and the dollar. This burdened the Iraqi economy and exposed it to chronic inflation. It created in the citizen an estranged expectation of his local currency, and he began seeking to get rid of it by investing it in safe havens, thus changing his character that he had previously become accustomed to when he hoarded the dinar. He saves it, for its strength and stability.
The continuation of smuggling operations brings with it an excessive increase in the printing of the dinar, which will suffer from a noticeable and chronic contraction, in conjunction with high rates of prices and inflation, in light of a stagnant economy, in which cash is not invested for the sake of development and production, but rather for cash exchanges aimed at profit through organized, semi-organized smuggling operations. Officially… This situation will create a state of coexistence for the citizen with his local currency, in which he loses confidence. This path has a clear direction, as it is heading towards an inflationary stagnation.
I recommend stopping the printing of local currency, planning to withdraw excess currency from local markets, and taking a bold, clear and immediate step to prevent the smuggling of dollars and dinars to neighboring countries, especially to Iran, and to stop taking cartoonish measures that are used to cover up major corruption operations, under the guise of addressing problems. Monetary and financial matters in Iraq, and being satisfied with this amount of laughing at the chins of the Iraqis, and paying attention to the interests of the people.