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Iraq budget shortage amounts to 19 trillion dinars

28 Jan 2013
Economic and financial experts confirmed that some expenditures and revenue data is missing which makes it impossible to know the factual difference between these two components and for determining whether there is an excess or a shortage in the budget. The announcement that the budget of State had a shortage every year was not welcomed by some financial and economic experts who doubted the results of those indexes. They made a confirmation that no clear data about expenditures and revenues are available which prevent giving a true estimate of these numbers especially that these indexes settle whether a state’s budget has a deficit or a surplus. Ahmed Al Husseini, who is the director of Iraqi Institute for Economic Reform said that their ministries always report shortages even though in reality they have an excess of money; meaning that no actual shortage exists since it is covered by giving the finance minister or any official acting in his place the competence of borrowed from the International Monetary Fund IMF or the World Bank. Now, he wonders if he has an excess why would he burden himself with external debt. The determined shortage rate should not exceed 3 % however every year, it records a rate ranging between 10 % and 12 %. This shortage does not really exist, meaning that there is a mistake in estimating expenditures and revenues in this regard, as a result, a non-existing deficit is recorded in the Iraqi budget, stated Tawfik Mane, the economic expert. The financial and economical experts criticized the strategy adopted by budget markets in the ministries and provincial councils in general, requesting to the relevant officials to draw their budgets in agreement with a clear policy aiming to benefit to the best extent from the revenue of the country, namely oil. Oubeid Freih, the financial expert expressed his thoughts, saying, “How is a budget drawn up? Is it drawn up correctly these days? Do ministries have a certain vision when working on their budgets? When ministers have a certain project in mind they ask for money to be allocated from the budget. Then when asked why the project was not realized they reply back that the ministry does have no land for building this project on, a hospital for example. As a result he must be asked whether he was having plans in building it on planet Mars? Abdullah Al Jabouri, the economic expert said that the economies of several countries benefit from their profits for building effective investment projects. A general budget of 138 trillion Dinars and a financial deficit amounting to 19 trillion Dinars got approved by the Iraq cabinet at the end of the year 2012, if an oil barrel’s price is estimated to 90 dollars and a quantity of 2 million 900 thousand barrels are produced on a daily basis and 250 thousand of which are produced in the Kurdistan region. Source: [Al Sumaria]
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