KRG delegation in Baghdad meets parliament’s speaker and Maliki

KRG Deputy Prime Minister Qubad Talabani meets Iraqi Parliament’s Speaker Mohammed al-Halbousi in Baghdad, February 1, 2021. (KRG)

SULAIMANI (ESTA) — A Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) delegation met with Iraqi parliament’s speaker and head of state of law in Baghdad on Monday to discuss the Region’s share of the federal budget for 2021.

The delegation led by Deputy Prime Minister Qubad Talabani visited Baghdad on Sunday to hold talks with Iraqi political leaders and members of Iraqi parliament’s committee of finance.

On Monday, the delegation discussed with Iraqi parliament’s speaker Mohammed Halbousi the draft federal budget law for fiscal year 2021 and progress between Erbil and Baghdad toward a resolution, a KRG statement said.

“The two sides agreed that the 2021 budget bill should reflect the interests of all Iraqis before being approved,” the KRG stated.

They also discussed ways to strengthen dialogue between Erbil and Baghdad, stressing the need to continue with talks to resolve issues between both sides, the statement read.

In the meeting with the head of State of Law, Nouri al-Maliki expressed his support for the KRG’s efforts to reach a deal with the federal government’s officials, KRG said in a separate statement.

“Both sides agreed on the need to resolve disputes to protect the interests of all Iraqis and clear the way for other pressing issues in the country, notable the threat of terrorism and the resurgence of ISIS,” the KRG stated.

The delegation also visited Baghdad last week and held talks with members of Iraqi parliament’s committee of defense and parliament’s deputy speakers Hassan Kaabi and Bashir Hadad.

Despite a series of meetings, the delegation has yet to make a deal with members of the Iraqi Council of Representatives to finalize a deal reached with Iraqi federal government’s officials regarding the Region’s share of the federal budget for 2021.

Talabani and Iraqi Finance Minister Ali Allawi said in December that Erbil and Baghdad had reached an agreement over the 2021 federal budget bill.

The draft budget law commits the Kurdistan Region to hand over 250,000 barrels of oil per day and 50% of non-oil revenue to Baghdad in exchange for the Region’s share of the budget.

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