Uncertainty after Parliament ousts Iraq’s finance minister

A long-serving lynchpin in Iraq’s government was ousted over corruption allegations, leaving up to $18 billion in loans and Iraq’s draft 2017 federal budget hanging in the balance.
Then-Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari, now Finance Minister, meets with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry in Baghdad on June 23, 2014. (THAIER AL-SUDANI/Reuters)
  • Kurdish parties, including KIU, voted against him
  • SoL and Sunni bloc MPs say more no-confidence votes to come
  • IOCs don’t see immediate impact on payments, but concerned about uncertainty

BAGHDAD - Hoshyar Zebari, Iraq's Foreign Minister from 2003 until he became Finance Minister in 2014, lost a vote of no confidence on Wednesday, with 158 MPs – including some from his own fractured Kurdistan Alliance bloc – siding with a campaign ultimately against Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi led by former Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.

Zebari’s ouster has potentially far-reaching implications for Iraq as it deals with a severe financial crisis brought on by collapsed oil revenues, chronic budgetary mismanagement and a two-year long war against the Islamic State (IS).

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