On Tuesday Iraq’s cabinet approved a budget of $115billion for the year 2013. According to a government spokesman it is an 18% increase compared to the previous year’s spending program.
Ali al-Dabbagh told in a statement that 138 trillion dinar budget which still requires the approval of parliament is a 21 trillion dinar increase of the previous year’s (2012) budget. This is mostly based on the sales of oils. Now the average price is $90 per barrel. And the budget is calculated over the expected production which is near about 2.9 million barrels per day.
The financial condition of Iraq is highly dependent on oil industry. Most of the government’s revenue comes from it. And in recent years they really have improved dramatically in oil production and as well as in export business. But these achievements are not sufficient. A more effort and greater targets are really required.
It was expected that 250,000 bpd of exports will be done from the autonomous northern Kurdistan region. But due to some disputes with central government related to the energy contracts with foreign firms these exports are stopped. The budget of 2013 is hampered, because this 250,000 bpd of exports was included in the budget.
40% of the budget is enrolled for capital investments and the rest is meant for other expenses like different governmental operations, salary payments etc.
This financial program aims at security and electricity as its central focus. For the above causes 21% and 14% respectively are allotted from the proposed budget
Now a decade has passed after the banishment of Saddam Hussein by the US-led invasion. But the citizens of Iraq are still suffering from frequent electricity cuts (6 to 8 hours per day).
The security of Iraq always remains very unstable. Only in 2006 and 2007 the limit of violence is decreased a little bit. But the attacks are very common one. According to AFP tally 250 persons were killed in every 4 months.
Source [Ahram Online]