IMF: Iraq Growth To ‘Slow Markedly’

Despite running budget surpluses in the last two years, Iraq is in danger of running costly fiscal deficits in the ‘medium term,’ the IMF said in an Article 4 statement this week.

Government salaries and other current spending is growing so much so that even with exports running at near-record volumes ( MEES, 10 May ), a sizeable deficit is predicted for 2019.

Recently released data from the Central Bank of Iraq shows that Baghdad ran a $21.6bn (ID 25.7tn) surplus last year.

With Islamic State-related security woes subsiding, the main impetus is now for Baghdad to invest in reconstruction projects – particularly given the relatively strong fiscal position of the government ( MEES, 16 February 2018 ). (CONTINUED - 263 WORDS)