12-19-14 My Ladies: WHAT A WEEK THIS HAS BEEN.
GOOD FRIDAY MORNING EVERYONE. LET ME START BY SAYING THIS WAS SUCH A BUSY WEEK IN IRAQ. EVERYONE HAS SOMETHING TO SAY, THE CBI, THE GOI, THE ISX SO LET’S GET TO IT. JUST A REMINDER NO ONE ON THESE SITES KNOW THE DATE BUT WE CAN LOOK AT THE PROGRESS THAT HAS TAKEN PLACE AND MAYBE SEE HOW WE CLOSE WE ARE TO COMPLETION. BE WARNED THIS IS A BIT LONG
FOR STARTERS WE SAW IN OUR POST EARLIER THIS WEEK THE POSSIBLE TIME LINE FOR HCL OF JAN 1 2015 AS REPORTED IN THE WASHINGTON POST AND AL MONITOR IN IRAQ, AND WE SAW ABADI ON TV TALKING ABOUT A HISTORIC EVENT TAKING PLACE THAT WAS TO BE LIKE NONE OTHER SINCE 2003. HERE IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
AND WE SAW A VIDEO OF RAFIDIAN BANK TOP EXEC TALKING ABOUT NEW CARDS WITH SIM CHIPS AND NEW ATM’S BUT THEY WERE BEING HELD HOSTAGE BY THE CBI UNTIL THE DELETE THE ZEROS PROGRAM WAS IN PLACE
NOW THIS WEEK WE HAVE 4 GREAT ARTICLES ABOUT CHANGING THE CURRENCY, LET’S HAVE A LOOK. SO OK IT SEEMS THEY ARE GOING TO BE REPLACING THE OLD NOTES WITH THE NEW ONES AND THIS PROCESS WILL NEED TO BE OVERSEEN BY THE INTEGRITY COMMITTEE.
Integrity’s (et al): the currency exchange risk and the corruption and financial supervision of the central replaced
Stressed the Parliamentary Integrity Committee member Abdul Karim Abtan “The issue of dangerous currency switch, and the corruption.” He called the governor of the Central Bank and the Finance Ministry to form a committee of intelligence and the prime minister and integrity, to oversee the replacement of the currency.”
Abtan said in a statement singled out by the reporter for News Agency (et) that “the process of replacing the currency need to general supervision of the Ministry of Finance and the Central Bank, but we can not determine the existence of fake currency in the category of ten thousand.” Stressing that “the Parliamentary Integrity Committee will have a visit to the Central Bank, to view the currency exchange mechanism and how to burn them, and where they burn and what is the amount of the switch.” Noting that there were many questions from the Committee will ask the central bank need to answer, saying, “The Integrity Committee will monitor the currency replacement process with precision.”
The Central Bank of Iraq, according to a decision of the previous government decided coins withdrawn category 10 025 thousand dinars, and replace them with new cash paper of the same class but different from typographical graphically the banknote, while denying any case of corruption in the switch of the local currency.
AND HERE IS MORE ON IT, THE HEAD OF THE ISSUANCE DEPARTMENT OF THE CBI, IHSAN SHOMRAN YASIRI IS SAYING THEY HAVE TAKEN STEPS TO COMBAT COUNTERFEITING AND FORGERY AND ALL THE BANKS HAVE RECEIVED THE LATEST MACHINES TO COUNT AND SORT BANKNOTES AND SECRETION OF FAKE AND DAMAGED ONES. THEY HAVE ALSO PUT AN INTERNAL CONTROL SYSTEM IN PLACE AND MONITORING CAMERAS. THE INVESTMENT COMMITTEE WENT ON TO SAY THAT NEIGHBORING COUNTRIES HAD PRINTED SIX DIFFERENT EDITIONS OF THE IRAQ CURRENCY AND ENTERED THEM INTO THE IRAQI TERRITORY IN ORDER TO TRY AND DESTROY THE IRAQI ECONOMY. THIS WAS ANOTHER REASON FOR REPRINTING THE CURRENCY AND THIS TIME THE 25 THOUSAND NOTES HAVE THE KURDISH LANGUAGE ON IT. NOW THE THEY ARE ON THE DOOR STEP OF RELEASING THIS NEW CURRENCY AND THE INTEGRITY COMMITTEE WILL BE OVER SEEING THE ENTIRE PROCESS AND IN SPITE OF THE LEGISLATIVE RECESS THE COMMITTEE WILL CARRYING OUT THIS SWITCH IN ALL STATE INSTITUTIONS.
Central Bank’s (et): there is no corruption in the process of switching the currency
Parliamentary Economic’s (et): We will monitor the process of replacing the currency
Suspicions of corruption in currency exchange
ALRIGHT SO NOW MOVING ALONG ABADI DID A LIVE INTERVIEW THIS WEEK IN FRONT OF A SENIOR US OFFICIAL STEWART BOWED JR. WHO IS THE SENIOR ADVISER AT THE CENTER FOR STRATEGIC AND INTERNATIONAL STUDIES. HE PREVIOUSLY SERVED AS THE SPECIAL INSPECTOR GENERAL FOR IRAQ RECONSTRUCTION FROM 2004 -2013. IN THIS 90 MINUTE INTERVIEW ABADI TOLD HOW HE WAS RECONSTRUCTING IRAQ.
HERE READ FOR YOURSELF;
December 17, 2014, 03:00 pm
Beginning of Iraq?
By Stuart W. Bowen, Jr.
Last week, I returned from my 38th trip to Iraq (since 2004), but my first since the shocking June 10 seizure of Mosul, Iraq’s second largest city, by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). Falling almost upon the one year anniversary of ISIS’s initial incursion into Anbar Province, my journey was highlighted by a lengthy visit with Iraq’s new Prime Minister Dr. Haider al-Abadi. Our discussion centered on the other war he is fighting, the one against corruption.
The Prime Minster’s first words upon succeeding to his new office in September signaled hope on the anti-corruption front: his administration would focus on “efficiency and integrity, to salvage the country from security, political and economic problems.”
After several late summer downturns in the battle against ISIS, the fight has steadied somewhat, thanks to an increase in air-strikes and the deployment of more Coalition resources, which bolstered Iraqi ground forces. The recent strategic recovery of Bayji, home to Iraq’s largest refinery, marked an important success. The fight against endemic Iraqi corruption, however, has just begun.
Over the course of 90 minutes in his Republican Palace office, Dr. Abadi laid out an ambitious anti-corruption agenda, focusing on five sectors:
Security Sector Reform. Corruption is rife in this sector. The Prime Minister recently cleaned house at the Ministries of Defense and Interior, cashiering over 50 senior leaders for manifest incompetence and rampant fraud. These weaknesses doubtlessly contributed to ISIS’s rout of the Iraqi Army in Mosul. Regarding corruption at the Defense Ministry, Dr. Abadi expressed public outrage at the revelation that there were 50,000 “ghost soldiers” on his Army’s payroll (the result of falsified personnel entries). The Prime Minister told me that many more necessary reforms are coming at Defense and Interior including reining in rogue militias, eliminating sectarianism from the security forces, and ensuring prosecution of those guilty of graft in the arms procurement pipeline.
2. Energy Sector Reform. Iraq is a command economy; the government owns the entire oil and gas industry, the country’s only profitable segment. The Prime Minister’s recent agreement with the Kurdistan Regional Government on oil exports signals important progress in this area, but Dr. Abadi emphasized that additional steps must be taken to limit risk and ensure fairness, including strengthening transparency and accountability for all oil accounts and securing the equitable distribution of revenues among the provinces.
3. Rule of Law Reform. In 2004, the United States created a Commission of Public Integrity and an Inspector General system for Iraq, but these novel organizations failed to stem the rising tide of corruption. Moreover, prosecutions of senior officials for major fraud have been largely non-existent. The Prime Minister demonstrated a willingness for reform in this arena when he recently issued an executive order limiting the period a person can be held without charges; unlawful detentions had roiled Sunnis across Iraq. More reforms are coming, he said, including a full-scale review of the judiciary, a bolstering of prosecutorial capacity, and a functional strengthening of the anti-corruption departments.
4. Banking System Reform. The Central Bank of Iraq protects the country’s financial reserves and has the duty to prevent money laundering associated with its daily auctions of hundreds of millions of dollars. A senior Iraqi official recently told me that these auctions have been a nest of corruption for about a decade, leading to criminal losses amounting to well over $150 billion. The Prime Minister said he will move to address this financial black hole by increasing the CBI’s anti-money laundering budget and personnel, stepping up investigations of the country’s largely unregulated private banks, and starting a serious stolen asset recovery initiative.
5. Contracting System Reform. In Iraq, the government is the dominant contracting entity. Its opaque processes bred a business mafia in Baghdad invested in perpetuating a shadowy system. As a member of Parliament, Abadi sought to revise that system, and he has now taken up the task again from the more powerful vantage point of his new office. To that end, he said he intends to empower a new contracts review committee that will vet and approve every major government engagement before its issuance and to push for new conflict of interest laws that punish those in the public sector who game the system for personal profit.
This past summer some observers publicly declared the “end of Iraq,” after ISIS seized control of about 30 percent of the country’s territory. And, indeed, some things have come to an end in Iraq. But the advent of new leadership in the Prime Minister’s Office indicates that a new beginning might be at hand.
But to succeed in saving Iraq and restoring its territorial integrity, Abadi must stay committed to achieving unity with and among his country’s Sunni and Kurdish communities, to continuing the growth of a meaningful anti-ISIS Coalition that fully includes Turkey and the Gulf Cooperation Council countries, and to pressing forward ever more aggressively with his twin wars against ISIS and corruption. If he does these things, then perhaps we might one day look back on this moment as the point in time when a new Iraq began to take shape.
Bowen is a senior adviser at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. He previously served as the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction from 2004 to 2013.
AND HERE NOW IN ARABIC
Abbadi vows in front of the US Inspector for the reconstruction of Iraq to rein in rogue militias and the elimination of sectarian Security
WHEW! THAT IS SOME LAUNDRY LIST RIGHT? BUT HE IS GETTING IT ALL DONE STEP BY STEP. ONE OTHER VERY IMPORTANT STEP IN THE REFORMS IS THE PRIVATE SECTOR; THIS SECTOR NEEDS TO BE STIMULATED BUT NOT TO WORRY BECAUSE ABADI IS A MAN WITH A PLAN.
WELL THE PRIVATE SECTOR NEEDED TO BE CAPITALIZED RIGHT SO HOW TO DO THAT? WELL ABADI TOOK HIMSELF TO ABU DHABI AND HELD A MEETING AT HIS HOME FOR ALL IRAQI BUSINESS MEN LIVING OUTSIDE OF IRAQ AS WELL AS UAE OFFICIALS.
THEY DISCUSSED INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITIES FOR THE PRIVATE SECTOR AND WAYS OF REMOVING ANY OBSTACLES. HE LISTENED TO VIEWS AND PROPOSALS OF THESE BUSINESSMEN ON PROCEDURES FOR TRAVEL, AND INVESTMENT LAWS, AND THEY CAME UP A STRATEGY TO GET THE PRIVATE SECTOR ENGAGED. THEY EXPRESSED THE DESIRE OF THE UAE TO INCREASE COOPERATION WITH IRAQ AND ESTABLISH A SPECIAL RELATIONSHIP WHERE THE UAE WOULD BE A NATURAL PARTNER FOR IRAQ.
THE MEETING ENDED WITH ABADI REQUESTING THE INVESTORS VISIT IRAQ TO SEE FOR THEIR SELVES THE PROGRESS, AND NOT LISTEN TO THE DISTORTION OF THE MEDIA. THE INVESTORS PROMISED TO CONSIDER THE REQUEST SERIOUSLY.
Abadi confirms directed the government to support the private sector http://www.imn.iq/news/view.56461/
NOW IT WOULD SEEM THAT EVERYTHING ABADI TOUCHES TURNS TO GOLD BECAUSE A FEW DAYS LATER WHAT HAPPENED? SAADI WHO IS THE HEAD OF THE SECURITIES COMMISSION CONFIRMS A TRUE PARTNERSHIP. THAT’S JUST AMAZING.
Saadi: Meet Abadi businessmen confirm true partnership
AND ALWAYS A MAN WITH A PLAN AND ALWAYS THINKING ABADI HAS TO FIGURE THE BEST WAY TO GET THE BUSINESS MEN INTO IRAQ. SO HE COMES UP WITH ELECTRONIC VISAS. YOU SEE ELECTRONIC VISA WILL BE MUCH QUICKER WAY TO FACILITATE THEIR ENTRY INTO IRAQ. WHILE HE’S AT IT HE WANTS TO GRANT ELECTRONIC VISAS FOR ALL INVESTORS AND BUSINESS MEN INTERESTED IN INVESTING IN IRAQ.
Iraq gives (VISA) electronic foreign businessmen
OK SO LETS RECAP QUICK, WE HAVE THE CORRUPTION GETTING UNDER CONTROL, THE CURRENCY BEING SWITCHED THE NEW BILLS ARE COMING OUT, THE BUSINESS MEN COMING ON ELECTRONIC VISAS TO CAPITALIZE THE PRIVATE SECTOR SO WHAT IS MISSING? AHA THE CENTRAL BANKS OPINION OF ALL THIS. OH YEA AND THE IMF’S OPINION TOO. SO HERE WE SEE WHAT THEY HAVE TO SAY AND THE STEPS THE CBI IS WILLING TO TAKE WITH THE PRIVATE SECTOR.
Central Bank: We support the private sector continuing to provide foreign exchange requirements
AFTER READING THIS ALL WEEK WE HAVE TO AGREE THAT A RATE CHANGE IS RIGHT UPON US. WE ARE SEEING TIME LINES BEING MET, THE GOVERNMENT PROGRAM BEING FOLLOWED, THE CENTRAL BANK CLEANING HOUSE; THE GOVERNMENT BANKS HAVE NEW ATM’S AND NEW CARDS WITH SIM CHIPS AND ARE READY TO DISTRIBUTE THEM. WE SAW THE CBI SAY YET AGAIN THEY HAVE ALL THE ELECTRONIC SYSTEM IN PLACE TO DELETE THE ZEROS AND THEY ARE SET TO GO TOO
THE AGRICULTURAL SECTOR IS READY TO BE ACTIVATED AS WELL AS OTHER AREAS TO DEFLECT FROM OIL BEING THE SOLE SOURCE OF INCOME
THE ISIS SITUATION IS MORE THAN UNDER CONTROL. THEY ARE ENCOURAGING THE DISPLACED TO RETURN TO THEIR HOMES EVEN THE ONE’S IN PREVIOUS HOT SPOTS.
THE DECISION WAS IN TODAY FROM THE UNITED NATIONS TO ALLOW IRAQ TO POSTPONE THEIR LAST COMPENSATION PAYMENT UNTIL 2016 TO KUWAIT. THIS WILL CERTAINLY BE A BIG HELP ON THE BALANCE SHEET FOR IRAQ.
YES IT CERTAINLY DOES LOOK LIKE CLIMATE IS GOOD FOR THE FINAL STEPS OF THE MONETARY REFORM. AND WE ARE NOT THE ONLY ONES THAT WOULD AGREE WITH THAT.
YESTERDAY THERE WAS A MEETING WITH THE FINANCE MINISTER AND THE OIL MINISTER AND A DELEGATION FROM THE US CONGRESS. WE ASKED OUR SELVES WHY NOW? THEY WERE REVIEWING THE ECONOMIC SITUATION AND THE BUDGET AND DEVELOPMENTS OF THE GLOBAL OIL MARKET. HUMMM THEY COULD HAVE DONE THAT FROM WASHINGTON.
Finance ministers and oil Showcase economic conditions for Iraq with a delegation from the US Congress
The Ministry of Finance revealed that the Finance Minister Hoshyar Zebari and Oil Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi has met with a delegation from the US Congress.
Statement of the Ministry of Finance had seen him for News Agency (et) that he was most evident during the meeting urged the government programs in the areas of development, was also review the economic situation and the budget and the developments of the global oil market.
The Delegation of the Congress President of the Republican majority in the House of Representatives Kevin McCarthy and Rodney Vrling Hocn member of the House of Representatives Chairman of the Appropriations Committee and Devin Nunes member of the Intelligence Committee and participated in the meeting, also vice chairman of the US mission and a number of aides members of the congressional delegation.
The delegation of the Congress of the United States stand with the government and people of Iraq in the face of terrorism and achieving security and stability and support the government’s program to bring more democracy, reconciliation and reforms.
AND THEN LAST BUT NOT LEAST LAST NIGHT ABADI CALLED THE PRESIDENT OF THE USA AND GAVE A NICE PROGRESS REPORT.
(*) Readout of the President’s Call with Prime Minister al-Abadi of Iraq
President Obama spoke by phone today with Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to discuss the political and security situation in Iraq and the progress of Iraqi Security Forces in their efforts to counter ISIL. The President commended the steps that Prime Minister al-Abadi has taken in the first three months of his administration to govern inclusively and begin building a united front among Iraqis to combat ISIL. The President congratulated the Prime Minister on the conclusion of the recent oil revenue-sharing arrangement with the Kurdistan Regional Government and reiterated his commitment to supporting the Iraqi Security Forces’ success through train and assist programs, provision of weapons and equipment, and airstrikes. He also noted U.S. support for the Iraqi government’s ongoing efforts to integrate Sunni tribal fighters into Iraq’s security institutions.
SO THAT IS THE END OF OUR UPDATE FOR THIS WEEK, FROM WHERE WE SIT EVERYTHING IS LOOKING GREAT. THE BUDGET IS SCHEDULED FOR MONDAY AGAIN, AND WE MAINTAIN THEY WILL NOT OPEN IT UNTIL THE CBI POSTS A RATE. IF THAT IS NOT WHAT THEY ARE WAITING FOR THEN THE BUDGET COULD HAVE READ BACK IN NOVEMBER WHEN THEY FIRST FINISHED IT. THE DROPPING OIL PRICES MAKES A NICE COVER BUT IF WE REMEMBER WHEN ALL THIS STARTED WITH THE DECLINE IN OIL PRICING IRAQ SAID THEY WOULD ADJUST AT $60 A BARREL AND INCREASE PRODUCTION, SO WHY THE DAILY DELAY. ADDITIONALLY WE FEEL ABADI HAS BEEN A MAN OF HIS WORD, SO WE FIND IT ODD THAT HE WOULD PLAYING THE WHERE’S WALDO GAME WITH THE BUDGET UNLESS HE WAS BEING TOLD TO HOLD OFF.
WE POINTED THE HIGH LIGHTS OF THE WEEK AND NOW YOU READ AND DRAW YOUR OWN CONCLUSIONS, WE FEEL THIS SHOULD BE A VERY TELLING WEEKEND.
LOVE TO ALL ….MY LADIES.
OH P.S. HERE IS THE NEW PLATFORM FOR THE KURDISTAN STOCK EXCHANGE Erbil Stock Exchange
12-19-14 My Ladies: WHAT A WEEK THIS HAS BEEN.