Wednesday, December 14, 2016


Hi Everyone,
I bring you much news today. With December just about half over we are moving towards some real exciting times in early 2017, at least we are hopeful.
Many are wondering about my new format of the news letters and why I now call it “News Brief”. My intent is to first include some upfront paragraphs to introduce key elements of the current news (news in brief). Then to present the articles that are noteworthy and backup the news, then comment on them when appropriate so you can further understand (news in detail).

But remember these comments are my opinion  from my study of this ongoing saga. After reading thousands of articles over the last 10 years and talking to Iraqi contacts (both military and govt), I think I have a good handle on the situation. I am not always correct in my opinions but the FACTS speak for themselves in the printed articles I also present. 

You can be the judge and THINK, THINK, THINK for yourself. My concentration is not to convince you anything but to present to you what I know to be FACTUAL and then you decide. My focus is thus not on any other currency but the Iraqi dinar revaluation and on the forthcoming “project to delete the zeros”. This is what I have been told to concentrate on by the CBI and so I find it makes total sense.
As always, my comments are in italic RED 
Baghdad} Euphrates News said the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, liberated forces commitment to preserve the lives of civilians. Abadi said in a statement the agency {Euphrates News} received a copy of it today that "our forces in all Qtatha committed during the battle and our aim to reduce the number of casualties of our troops and civilians and we will complete the ISIS battles soon." (we know the end of 2016 is very near and we have been told the operations are targeted to  be concluded by this time)
Today I also talk about the press statement made public by the Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on the completion of the first review of Iraq’s three-year Stand-By Arrangement (SBA). It is interesting and we still see proof that they need to move to an international market place. I also included a link so you can read the press statement for yourselves, if you wish. Remember we want to empower ourselves and not rely so much on the jibber,  jabber nonsense of many of these so called “intel guru”.

How many times must I tell everyone that HCL is not done and still needs legislation. Yes the council of ministers completed their version of the HCL and moved it to parliament for a vote. They voted on it and it did not pass, as it stands today. Yes- there are provisions in the 2017 budget that commit the govt to many of the needed oil revenue payments and they all agreed to these provisions in the budget but still there is not a much needed formal  “legislated law”. Do you know what a legal law is? Better go back and read up to find out. I am not about to give lesson on government…lol…lol…
There needs to be legislative in many different areas in dealing with energy and in particular oil. So this week out popped yet another article telling us they are still working on HCL and they realize they still need it. See article below. Do they need this for the RV? The verdict on this debate is still open for discussion since a year ago I was told YES, now my source in the CBI is telling me NO, that they have what they needed for now but the country itself still needs a comprehensive energy law including oil, gas and electricity. Also the nuclear issue keeps coming up since Iraq wants nuclear energy. But we will shelf the nuclear stuff for another days discussion.
So what else do we need to complete the 2017 budget? Well…we all should know by now the process of getting a law implemented. We know the budget passed in parliament, then when to the president where it now resides.
The cabinet spokesman Saad al-Hadithi's (Journal News), told us that the government is waiting for the release of the budget in the Official Gazette and to question the delay. The delay is said by spending provisions added into the budget by parliament without final review by the cabinet or approval by the cabinet. Then voted on. So whether these changes affect the financial distress suffered by the budget is a matter of question. So the announcement by the cabinet was to either ratify the budget (post in gazette) and proceed or to go to the courts to challenge it.
So just how does the legislative process work in Iraq?

The council of ministers write the laws and vote on the them, then pass them to the house for discussion. The house gets up to two sessions to discuss and pick it apart and make recommendations to the council. Then it is passed back to the council for any needed changes. Can parliament go beyond the two reviews? Legally according to the constitution NO they can’t. But they often do and this is part of the hold up in much of the legislation. So if the law does not pass when voted on, it goes back to the council and the process starts all over again. They have a waiting period before they can resubmit the law again and this too causes much delay. So once passed the law goes to the president for ratification (normally just a formality) then it gets published in the gazette before it can be implemented. The gazette makes it “public” and allows the common person view it and become aware of it. Today I bring you an article letting the citizens know the status of the budget for 2017. See article below.
Lots going on between Iran and Iraq these days too. Seems they are making peace with each other and establishing future avenues for constructive trade. We know this is needed since they are neighbors and have been trading partners forever. We also know Iran will need a viable currency with Iraq in order to fairly conduct this trade. So what will Iran do, now that they are in sanctions? Well they have only two choices – 1) get themselves out of sanctions and cooperate with the rest of the world, or 2) keep suffering under sanctions and allow a civil war. The news last week that Iran is switching its national currency to toman was more than just a big announcement; it also polarized opinion and exposed the apparent disharmony among policymaking bodies. The decision to change the monetary unit from rial to toman and thereby remove one zero from the national currency was announced, as the Cabinet approved parts of the Central Bank of Iran Bill before sending it to the parliament. The plan is to exchange 10 rials for 1 toman in this process. YES- this is a lop and so all I can say to everyone who purchased Rial….’I told you so”….lol…lol….
So if you bought 5,000,000 rial after this lop it will be worth 500,000 tomans. Then they are telling us the rate of the toman is still 39,000,000 to the US dollar. So I don’t get why everyone is flocking to the dealers for Rial? You just lost so much money even with the old rate without doing anything…. I keep telling everyone not to go half-cocked from what these so called “intel gurus” tell you. It would get you in trouble and so it has….shame on you……Again I also warn you about the Nesara bullshit nonsense and how it too is going to get you into a jam. They are nothing more that a bunch of opportunists who are taking advantage of you and the news to declare their successes while in reality there is no “New Republic” or any new “TRN” currency or any such successes to contributed to anyone from their organization. I can assure you their organization is not legal nor is it even a real organization. It is in fact just a couple looney tunes trying to stir the pot in the USA. These people have no real power unless you give it to them, and so then again be careful what you wish for and who you put into power. What really is their agenda? Just remember the brain washing in Germany in the 1930’s with the National Socialists Party! I rest my case on this topic…..
Also we hear many times from Hakim recently and he stressed the "unity of land full Iraqi sovereignty , " adding that " the liberation of the Iraqi regions should be done at the hands of Iraqi forces and on this basis do not accept the entry of military forces of other countries in the Iraqi territory without coordination with the Iraqi government." Remember they are about to complete the liberation of Mosul region and so the National Reconciliation is about to kick in. This law in part prohibits outside countries from sending armed forces into Iraq. Iraq is to provide its own security and defense. It is believed this will eliminate the private militias and make it easier to identify any potential terrorist gangs in Iraq. The “national unity ID card” too will help. Remember this effort?   
In a move to reduce the burden on the citizens, the Interior Ministry confirmed the possibility of a unified national card of the citizen who lost his identity card without a review of the judicial circuits. As soon seeking to open a new private offices issuing the card, the ministry called on all government departments adopting the completion of transactions. In the meantime, it expected to reach completion rates of the single card project to 50 percent the end of next year.
Articles Begin
Hakim declares from Tehran on a draft national reconciliation
[ Arbil ] 

President of the National Alliance , Mr. Ammar al - Hakim, on Monday, for a project for national reconciliation in Iraq in conjunction with the field the progress of the security forces and the popular crowd, pointing out that relying on foreigners can not bring security to the region. 

He said al - Hakim, in a press conference held at the Iraqi embassy in Tehran on Monday, said that " the Iraqi National Alliance , and in conjunction with the military achievements realized presented a project for national reconciliation would be trusted all the Iraqi people, noting that the settlement does not include criminals who stained their hands with the blood of the Iraqi people it includes partners in the political process and the representatives of the Iraqi people to engage in comprehensive talks. " 

He said al - Hakim said that "reliance on foreign arrivals from overseas can not bring security to the region," he said , "We call for dialogue  is always transparent and serious to resolve bilateral problems in Iraq." He pointed out that " the National Alliance delegation 's visit to Iran comes in the periodic visits of the Alliance to the context of the countries in the region, to inform State officials on the latest security and political developments in Iraq." 

He said the President of the National Alliance , said: "We have achieved a lot of achievements on the level of security in the country and after that was 40 percent of Iraq 's land area is under the control of terrorist groups , " he said . "There is currently a fateful battle to regain Iraqi territory by the army and police forces and the crowd folk and tribal forces and the Peshmerga. " 

He stressed the "unity of land full Iraqi sovereignty , " adding that " the liberation of the Iraqi regions should be done at the hands of Iraqi forces and on this basis do not accept the entry of military forces of other countries in the Iraqi territory without coordination with the Iraqi government."

Parliamentary power: law and national oil company of the priorities of our work
[Special Oan-] 
Announced that the Commission on oil and energy parliamentary, that the legal Oil and Gas National Oil Company legislation will have priority in its work in the next legislative term.
Committee Chairman Ares Abdullah, told all of Iraq, "We have the Ministry of Electricity Act and we will start at the beginning of the next legislative term, and there is also a legal attempt to oil and gas legislation and national oil company." (how many times must I tell everyone that HCL is not done and still needs legislation. Yes- there are provisions in the 2017 budget that commit the govt to many of the needed payments but still there needs to be legislative in many different areas in dealing with energy and in particular oil, that extend beyond just payments to the Kurdistan region for back money owed or future. So please listen to me….this article is yet more proof. No Hype, No Rumors, just the FACTS!)

He pointed out that his committee " has embarked on the legislative term of the previous several important laws, including the Atomic Energy Act and the exemption of foreign and local companies from fees." 

He said Abdullah "We as a committee we have made great efforts in the legislative and regulatory side and we had a distinct role in the monitoring and control of the ministries of oil and electricity , and there is cooperation between the Commission and these two ministries for the success of the work of parliament and the government together." 

The federal government and the Kurdistan Regional Government once made 17 of December 2014 oil agreement (but this is NOT a passed law thru the legislative brand of the GOI) to export the region 250,000 barrels of production with 300,000 barrels of the province of Kirkuk fields in exchange for pay Baghdad Kurdistan 's share of the federal budget by 17%, and this is what was agreed upon in 2017 budget is at loggerheads for years between the center and the region to export the power and confined in the absence of oil and gas inactivated law passed for years, but the two sides reached in December 17, 2014 an agreement to export the region 250,000 barrels of production with 300,000 barrels of Kirkuk province , fields vs. to pay Baghdad Kurdistan 's share of the federal budget by 17%. 

The oil and gas law had previously introduced in the previous legislative session of the parliament did not get the agreement passed. (I rest my case…..lol….lol…)
Cabinet discusses the budget to take a position on them
Abadi said the Office, on Tuesday, the cabinet will begin to discuss the approval of the general budget to take an official position on them.
He said cabinet spokesman Saad al-Hadithi's (Journal News), the government is waiting for the release of the budget in the Official Gazette facts to be direct study of the doors, which were added on and whether it affects the financial distress suffered by the budget and the announcement of the approval to proceed with or to go to the courts to challenge the then. (the contention now to challenge in the budget is the cost cutting measures, namely salary and pension cuts)
Adding that the Constitution gave powers to the House of Representatives to conduct transfers between the doors of public spending and reduce the total spending in the event of increased public expenditure ", stressing that" the House of Representatives is obliged to return to the government in some paragraphs to be responsible for the customizations and provide financial cover. "
The House of Representatives voted on 7 January this on the general budget for 2017, revenues amounted to 79 trillion and 11 billion and 412 million dinar $ 71 billion and the deficit exceeded 21 trillion dinar.

IMF Executive Board Completes First Review of Iraq’s Stand-By Arrangement

Please refer to link for entire document:

Note I did not (obviously) present the entire document today. You can click the link above and review it for yourself. But here are some key points.

The Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) today completed thefirst review of Iraq’s three-year Stand-By Arrangement (SBA), which is designed to support Iraq’s economic reform program and restore fiscal balance over the medium term. The Board also completed financing assurances review under the SBA. The SDR 3.831 billion arrangement (about US$5.34 billion at the time of approval) was approved in July, 2016 (See Press Release No. 16/321). The Board’s approval enables the disbursement of SDR 455 million (about US$617.8 million).

From the document I pulled some of the noteworthy performance corrections that are still needed. I quoted from the press release No 16/321:

“Significantly improving public financial management will be important. Arrears need to be assessed and paid following verification, and expenditure commitment and cash management should be strengthened to prevent the accumulation of new arrears.

“Measures to bolster financial sector stability include strengthening the legal framework of the Central Bank of Iraq, restructuring state-owned banks, andeliminating exchange restrictions. Measures to prevent money-laundering, counter the financing of terrorism, and strengthen the anti-corruption legislation also need to be implemented.

Implementation of the budget-sharing agreement with the Kurdistan Regional Government would put both the federal government and the Kurdistan Regional Government in a better position to address the shocks to the Iraqi economy.” (part of the much needed HCL law)

A.   Managing External Pressures

17.      The authorities remain committed to maintaining the Iraqi Dinar’s peg to the U.S. dollar (MEFP, ¶23). The peg provides a key nominal anchor in a highly uncertain environment with policy capacity weakened by the conflict with ISIS. To analyze the persistence of spread between official and parallel market rate (¶11) and make recommendations to reduce it, the CBI has requested technical assistance from the IMF Monetary and Capital Markets department. (so this one has me baffled. They will have to get off the peg if they move their currency international.Very  important to remember that Iraq is still NOT in the SDR basket of currencies and are still pegged to the US dollar (for now…lol…lol).

18.      The authorities are gradually removing remaining exchange restrictions and a multiple currency practice (MEFP, ¶24).

A move towards acceptance of the obligations under Article VIII of the IMF’s Articles of Agreement will send a positive signal to the investor community.

As a first step, the CBI made the weekly limits on the purchase of cash at the weekly foreign currency auctions indicative, by announcing that the CBI will directly meet any documented, bona fide need in excess of limits, or that banks may access foreign exchange in excess of the weekly limit to meet client demand based on appropriate documentation. As a second step, the CBI will issue clarifying implementing regulations and comprehensive instructions, to remove the limitation on transfer of investment proceeds that gives rise to an exchange restriction (SB, MEFP Table 2). (so if they don’t make a move in early 2017 to go international with the dinar, the investment proceeds in dinars earned within Iraq will have to be converted to US dollars within Iraq first and they then will be able to take out of the country [this is still the current “closed” & “sanctioned economy].
Do you think Iraq can afford to do this? Have you been reading all the articles about the corruption and draw down of the reserves associated with the currency auctions? They are having a hard time now holding on the dollars in the CBI reserves, never mind if all these foreign investors are to come into Iraq and they have to convert their dinars to dollars too..my take [my opinion only] on this is they MUST move their dinar international and allow it to circulate outside of Iraq if they are EVER going to grow the private sector in the way they keep telling us they want do.)

40.      Steps to strengthen the legal framework of the CBI, remove exchange restrictions and implement AML/CFT measures are welcome. They will help to improve the integration of the domestic financial system into the global economy(Yes, you read this correct. They did say “integration of the domestic financial system in the “global” economy”. We all know by now what this, in part, means)

Articles End
Remember this as we part today - Recently…the CBI came out and stated that they had tried to delete the three zeroes before in 2011, 2013, and 2015, but were delayed and plan on beginning the projects the first part of 2017…Three attempts that failed…hopefully, 2017 finally going through
Their words not mine…..No Rumors, No Hype, Just the FACTS!
Auf Wiedersehen
Much love to ya all,

Mnt Goat

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