IMF Advises Iraq To Cut Spending Further

Iraq is rapidly draining its foreign currency reserves as it struggles to pay its dues to foreign oil firms amid the collapse in oil prices, and revenues. Even the latest downward revision to expected 2015 budget income may prove optimistic, the IMF this week warned.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) said after concluding Article IV consultation discussions with Iraq’s finance and oil ministers this month that the Iraqi economy faces further downside risk should revenues fall short of expectations, due to lower oil prices and unbudgeted payments to foreign oil companies.

It urged Baghdad to consider further cuts to its expenditure in order to prevent a deficit wider than the $21.8bn forecast in the 2015 budget. (CONTINUED - 1573 WORDS)