Kurdish deputy: Senior officials in Baghdad are behind the dollar smuggling operation out of Iraq

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Kurdish deputy Senior officials in Baghdad are behind the dollar smuggling operation out of Iraq
Kurdish deputy Senior officials in Baghdad are behind the dollar smuggling operation out of Iraq

Al-Kurdi MP Soran Omar revealed on Saturday that the federal budget law did not come into force after that, and that the regional government would withdraw the salaries of the city of June from its special events, he confirmed that “high officials” were behind the operations of smuggling foreign workers abroad.

Soran Umar said during the press conference of Shafaq News Agency that “Until now, the federal budget has not been implemented for the current year, only because of the non-issue of instructions”, affirming that “the citizens of the region are waiting for the implementation of the budget as soon as possible.”

Umar added that “the region used to export oil until 25th of Azar al-Musram, and it received one trillion dinars from Baghdad, and it has to settle accounts for six months”.

Regarding the negotiations of the regional delegation with Baghdad, Omar confirmed that “the delegation held meetings with the concerned authorities in Baghdad for the purpose of settling the financial issues of the past six months, in addition to settling some financial accounts since the year 2004.”

A delegation from the Kurdistan Regional Government was on the 16th of the current year to Baghdad, the federal capital, to discuss the financial entitlements of the Kurdistan Region from the federal budget.

Regarding the increase in the price of the dollar, MP Suran Omar pointed out that “the increase in the price of the dollar is again related to the banks that participate in the currency auction”, stressing that “a large amount of foreign currency does not go to local traders, and many senior officials are behind some of the banks, some of which have branches in Kurdistan, which smuggle dollars out of the country.”

Suran Umar explained that “if the Central Bank of Iraq cannot stop the smuggling operations, the Iraqi currency will be in danger like other currencies, so it requires practical and bold steps and may cause the collapse of the Iraqi economy.”

On 19 July 2023, the US Treasury Department imposed sanctions on 14 Iraqi banks in response to Iran’s dealings in dollars.

The Wall Street Journal cited American authorities as saying that “the move came after the divulgence of data that the designated banks are engaged with tax evasion and deceitful exchanges”, demonstrating that “a portion of these tasks might be connected with people subject to sanctions, which expands the trepidation that Iran will profit from them.”

The U.S. Treasury Department prohibited four other Iraqi banks from accessing the dollar last October, as well as imposing stricter regulations on financial transfers in the country in general, in cooperation with the Central Bank of Iraq.

In the past few weeks, the Central Bank of Iraq has excluded 4 private Iraqi banks from the auction (namely: Al-Ansari, Al-Sharq Al-Awsat, Al-Qabd, and Asia) following instructions and warnings from the US Treasury Department.

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