Iraqi parliament to convene Sunday to vote on draft budget law

File – Members of Iraqi Council of Representatives are pictured during a session

SULAIMANI (ESTA) — The Iraqi Council of Representatives will convene on Sunday to vote on the draft federal budget law, the parliament’s presidency said on Friday.

The parliament was scheduled to hold a session on the draft budget law on Saturday.

Iraqi and Kurdish parties have yet to reach a final agreement on the Region’s share of the federal budget bill.

On March 19, a Kurdish government’s delegation and Shia parties reached a deal on the budget, but it was annulled after another term was added to the deal by the Shia parties, according to officials.

The delegation led by Deputy Prime Minister Qubad Talabani is expected to visit Baghdad next week to discuss the Kurdistan Region’s share of the budget bill with Iraqi parties.

According to the new agreement, first section of article 11 of the budget states that the entitlements of the Kurdistan Region and the federal government between 2014 and 2020 should be settled.

The second section of Article 11 includes five points. First point estimates the amount of oil production at the Kurdistan Region’s oilfields at 460,000 barrel per day (bpd). The Kurdistan Region is committed to export no less than 250,000 barrels through SOMO after costs of production, transfers, local usage, and petrodollars are taken out from the 460,000 bpd.

The second point says the first point will be implemented in coordination between the Iraqi oil minister and the Kurdistan Region’s ministry of natural resources.

The third point commits the Kurdistan Region to hand over non-oil revenue to the federal government in accordance with the financial management law.

In the fourth point, the KRG is obliged to repay loans of the Trade Bank of Iraq (TBI) through annual installments, starting from 2021.

The last point abides the federal government by paying the Kurdistan Region’s financial entitlements when the second point of this article is implemented.

The third section of article 11 commits the KRG to pay salaries of its public sectors.

Two more articles are added to the draft budget law, committing the KRG to send names and information about civil and military employees to the Iraqi ministry of finance and economy.

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