Er­bil has not re­ceived a penny from Bagh­dad for three con­sec­u­tive months

The Kurdish Globe - - FRONT PAGE -

While the cen­tral govern­ment of Iraq has to send IQD 1.2 tril­lion to Kur­dis­tan ev­ery month to fi­nance the pub­lic em­ploy­ees’ salaries and op­er­a­tional budget, but since the be­gin­ning of 2014, Bagh­dad has failed to ful­fill this re­quire­ment.

While the cen­tral govern­ment of Iraq has to send IQD 1.2 tril­lion to Kur­dis­tan ev­ery month to fi­nance the pub­lic em­ploy­ees’ salaries and op­er­a­tional budget, but since the be­gin­ning of 2014, Bagh­dad has failed to ful­fill this re­quire­ment.

This led to a de­lay in salary dis­burse­ments to govern­ment em­ploy­ees. Af­ter more than 2 weeks de­lay in the pay­ment of April salaries, em­ploy­ees of 13 min­istries and other govern­ment in­sti­tu­tions started to be paid on Tues­day, May 13, 2014.

Er­bil has not re­ceived a penny from Bagh­dad for three con­sec­u­tive months

Min­istry of Fi­nance and Econ­omy of the Kur­dis­tan Re­gional Govern­ment (KRG) an­nounced that they have not re­ceived a sin­gle dol­lar of March, April and May bud­gets from Bagh­dad.

Bagh­dad was sup­posed to send IQD 6 tril­lion since the be­gin­ning of 2014 till now, but it has only sent IQD 1.1 tril­lion, QD 566 bil­lion in Jan­uary and IQD 548 bil­lion in Fe­bru­ary, af­ter which fund­ing stopped com­pletely.

The is­sue of sell­ing Kur­dis­tan’s crude oil out of con­trol of the cen­tral govern­ment has been one of the ma­jor sources of dis­pute be­tween Bagh­dad and Er­bil, and Bagh­dad has been us­ing the budget cut as a pres­sure card to force Er­bil to stop its oil sales.

Kur­dish Prime Min­is­ter Nechir­van Barzani has re­it­er­ated sev­eral times dur­ing his re­cent state­ments that the salaries could be de­layed but would never be lost and all em­ploy­ees would get their salaries.

Iraq’s 2014 draft budget law has put a con­di­tion on the KRG to sell 100,000 bar­rels of oil per day through the State Oil Mar­ket­ing Or­ga­ni­za­tion SOMO as a pre­req­ui­site to send the Re­gion’s budget share. The rev­enue of these sales has to go into Bagh­dad’s pocket.

KRG au­thor­i­ties re­jected this con­di­tion and de­scribed it as a pun­ish­ment for the Re­gion. How­ever, Kurds agreed to pump 100,000 bpd with a con­di­tion that it is not through SOMO.

Cur­rently 2.5 mil­lion bar­rel of Kur­dish oil is stored in Cey­han Port in Turkey, await­ing its sales and ex­port to world mar­kets.

If Kur­dis­tan govern­ment con­trols its oil sales, it will be able to fund govern­ment salaries and oper­a­tion ex­pen­di­tures.

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