The Prime Minister, Muhammad Shiaa Al-Sudani, presided over the Council of Ministers’ thirty-ninth regular session, during which the Prime Minister discussed developments in the country, the implementation of files related to various issues at the national level, and the progress of implementing the priorities of the government program, in addition to discussing the topics on the agenda. And making choices and suggestions in this regard.
In honor of the Republic of Iraq’s National Day, the Prime Minister has instructed that all ministries and state institutions suspend official business hours on Tuesday, October 3, 2023, according to a statement from the Prime Minister’s Media Office.
In terms of ongoing financial and administrative reforms, the Council of Ministers decided to commit to all state contracts implemented within Iraq being in Iraqi dinars, with the exception of those opened by an external documentary credit, which will be according to the agreement between the two parties and for the documentary credit’s value only.
The Council directed that the Ministry of Planning inventory all previous state contracts contracted in US dollar currency, with the exception of those for which an external documentary credit was opened, and prepare a table of them to be sent to the Ministry of Finance and the Central Bank with the amounts due, provided that the Ministry of Planning determines the limit. The maximum monthly amount that the Central Bank must cover in US dollars based on receivables from contracting partners. The Central Bank covers these receivables at an exchange rate of (1320 dinars) per US dollar, placed in the Ministry of Finance’s account, to cover monthly payments.
The Council of Ministers also approved the Ministerial Council for the Economy’s recommendation (230204 Q), which included postponing and rescheduling the Ministry of Transport’s claim on its debts related to flooring fees and fines incurred by the General Iron and Steel Company; payment will be made when the aforementioned company’s factories are operational, and the Ministry of Transport/General Company for Ports of Iraq has taken all necessary procedures. To avoid penalties or floor fees as a result of delays in issuance.
The Council of Ministers approved the recommendation of the Ministerial Council for Energy (23083 of 2023) regarding the gas gathering and compression project in the Nasiriyah oil field as part of the Council’s follow-up of the energy sector and progress in implementing paths of reform, development, and exploitation of gas wealth.
The decision included the following: approval of the recommendation of the Central Committee for Review and Approval of the Referral in the Ministry of Oil at its session held on August 6, 2023 regarding the request of Dhi Qar Oil Company, one of the Ministry of Oil’s companies, to approve the referral of the gas gathering and compression project in the Nasiriyah oil field under the custody of the coalition (Oil Projects Company / Ministry of Oil and Oil Company) Italian PEG), a decision of the coalition (Oil
Electricity connectivity project between Iraq and Jordan
In the electricity sector, the Council of Ministers approved what was stated in the Ministry of Electricity letter dated September 4, 2023, regarding amending the sales contract by amending and renewing the contract related to the Iraqi-Jordanian electrical interconnection project, which was signed in 2019, to fit the period. New equipment and amendments to the terms and conditions, while maintaining the price equation contained in the energy sale contract, which includes the sale of electrical energy from the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan to the General Electric Power Transmission Company – Central Region / Ministry of Electricity, to purchase energy for a period of 36 months after the connection is completed. Between Jordan’s two Al-Risha transformer stations and the
In order to complete the export infrastructure and develop Iraq’s capabilities in this field, the Council of Ministers decided to place the Ministry of Finance as a deposit with the Iraqi Trade Bank in the amount of the total cost of the two submarine pipelines projects (4 and 5) and the new marine platform, which is included in the Ministry’s investment plan, amounting to 1.265 trillion dinars. Oil/Basra Oil Company forecast for 2023.
It was also decided that the Ministries of Planning and Oil would commit to the total cost of the aforementioned project as well as the annual allocations within the Ministry of Oil’s investment budget for the years (2023, 2024, 2025, and 2026), and that the Ministries of Oil and Planning would notify the Ministry of Finance/Accounting Department of the financing owed to the contracting company based on the amount of achievement and the approved contexts, and that The company’s financial account from the above-mentioned deposit, as well as the cancellation of Cabinet Resolutions (29 of 2020), (6 of 2021), and (83 of 2022).
The Council of Ministers decided to approve an exception to the contract for implementing the Misk Wadi Al-Tharthar project (purchasing cameras, concrete towers, and establishing fortified points) in addition to following up on the provision of fortifications, requirements for security work, and extending stability. Due to the tactical and strategic importance of the project, the direct contracting procedures provided in the Instructions for Implementing Government Contracts (2 of 2014) and the armament regulations issued by the National Security Advisory for equipping the security services.
The Council also decided to approve the issuance of the Air Defense Institute system, based on the provisions of the Defense University Law for Military Studies No. (4) of 2016, as well as the provisions of the Constitution, while taking into account the observations of the Legal Department in the Council of Ministers’ General Secretariat.
Winter farming strategy
As the Council of Ministers approved the recommendations of the minutes of the meeting of the joint permanent committee between the Ministries of Agriculture and Water Resources regarding the winter agricultural plan approved for the season (2023-2024), it continued to monitor the implementation of agricultural plans, the implementation of methods to combat water scarcity and drought, and the adoption of modern irrigation methods.
The Council directed that the Ministry of Water Resources follow the winter agricultural plan based on international meteorological center forecasts, that the winter planting and seed distribution season begin on October 1, 2023, and that the Ministry of Water Resources begin increasing water releases on November 15, 2023, and that the indicators be re-reviewed. Winter agriculture plan for November 15, 2023 until November 30, 2023.
It was decided to determine the areas covered by irrigation in the winter season, so that the areas covered by irrigation through rivers and streams would be 1.5 million dunums, and the areas for which the water share would be secured through underground wells would be four million dunums, on the condition that modern irrigation systems be used, and those who were negligent would be held accountable and excluded from the next agricultural plan when it was implemented.
The decision also included focusing agriculture on rivers and streams, prohibiting agriculture within the borders of marshes and floodplains in the governorates of Wasit, Maysan, Basra, Diyala, and Dhi Qar, granting interest-free loans to purchase modern irrigation systems (pivot, fixed, and drip systems), and subsidizing fuel prices to the Ministry. Water resources and the release of fuel shares to solve water shortages, as well as the continuation of the effort to reduce violations, particularly the campaign to remove unlawful fish lakes.
According to the decision, the council directed the formation of joint committees from all governorates and local governments’ water resources directorates, agricultural directorates, agricultural committees, agricultural associations, and police directorates to follow up on farmers’ and peasants’ commitment to the irrigation areas approved in the plan above, and to hold transgressors legally responsible for their transgression, and the two ministries are no longer in charge. In reviewing or promoting any demands for compensation in the event that this occurs, including scheduling bi-monthly meetings with agreed-upon dates, in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture directorates and the water resources directorates in all governorates.
The State Council authorized the issuing of the Second Amendment System to the System of the Baghdad School of Expressive Musical Arts (16 of 1985), which was audited by the State Council, based on requirements of the Constitution and the Ministry of Culture Law (17 of 2001).
The Council of Ministers approved the reopening of the Iraqi Cultural Center in Berlin, Germany, as part of the framework of cultural cooperation.
The Council also considered a number of files and issues on the agenda and made the necessary decisions, including granting the Ministry of Justice the authority to exclude from the mechanism used in selection, contracting with law firms with fees commensurate with the value of the case, and the committee composed of the General Secretariat of the Council of Ministers until September 12, 2023, following up on the arbitration decision in the Hungarian case.
The Council approved the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ recommendation to establish non-resident diplomatic representation with the Republic of Moldova through our embassy in Bucharest, based on the provisions of Articles (25) and (26) of Foreign Service Law No. (45) of 2008 and the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations for the year/ 1963, as well as the approval of the Ministerial Council for Human Development’s recommendation (23028 B for the year/ 1963).