Iraq seeks another emergency financing law as 2020 budget stalls

Cabinet considers new borrowing legislation to fund massive deficits after political headwinds stopped attempts to pass a full 2020 budget.
Iraqi Finance Minister and Deputy Prime Minister (second from right) and other Cabinet members in a meeting Sept. 28, 2020. (Source: Iraqi Prime Minister's Media Office)

Iraq's finance minister on Monday requested the Cabinet fast-track a law to cover deficit spending through the rest of 2020, effectively ending the push to approve a full budget law this year.

The stop-gap financing law is needed to cover monthly spending of about 8 trillion Iraqi dinars ($6.8 billion) on public sector salaries and other government operating expenses, according to a senior Iraqi official. Iraq has averaged less than $3 billion in oil revenues over the past six months, leaving a massive deficit.

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