PM Al-Sudani chairs meeting to discuss security, economic files

The 17th regular session of the Council of Ministers was chaired by the Prime Minister, Mr. Mohammed S. Al-Sudani. During the session, the council discussed a range of topics, including the current state of affairs, as well as issues related to security, service, and economic matters. They also reviewed files pertaining to the needs and requirements of citizens and monitored the progress of implementing strategic plans and public service projects.

The Prime Minister expressed his appreciation for the efforts of the ministries during the holy month of Ramadan. He noted that it was the first month in which there were no security breaches and highlighted that the month witnessed the highest number of hours of electricity supply.

Al-Sudani closely monitored the progress of the state’s institutions and government agencies in implementing the government program.

He emphasized the need for ministries to promptly provide relevant committees with implementation indicators, enabling the identification of strengths and weaknesses.

The Prime Minister has instructed the relevant authorities to exert their utmost efforts in evacuating Iraqi citizens from the Republic of Sudan and ensuring their safety, given the current worsening security situation.

As part of the Council of Ministers’ ongoing efforts to monitor the development file and investment plan and ensure their continued progress, the council has approved a recommendation by the Ministerial Council for Economy (230027). This recommendation confirms the implementation of the amended Cabinet Resolution (No. 14 of 2022) regarding the validity of the powers of the Minister of Planning, the relevant minister, the Head of the Government Agency, and the Governor to implement investment plan projects until the issuance of the Federal Budget. The council has also issued instructions to facilitate the implementation of its provisions for the year 2023.

In the oil wealth management file, the Council of Ministers approved the recommendation of the Energy Ministerial Council (23027) for the year 2023, which extended the validity of a memorandum of understanding between the Ministry of Oil in the Republic of Iraq and the Ministry of Oil in the State of Kuwait regarding the common border fields for a period of two years, starting from September 6, 2022, and until September 6, 2024. Taking into account that it is not a reason for requesting additional financial allocations for the Ministry and that any amendment, addendum, or contract resulting from the implementation of this memorandum is presented to the General Secretariat of the Council of Ministers for review before signing it.

Also, the Ministry of Oil should follow up with the concerned authorities to provide a technical report for the joint fields.

The Council of Ministers approved the recommendation of the Ministerial Council for Energy (23025) for the year 2023, which includes approving the recommendation of the Central Committee for review and Approval of the referral in the Ministry of Oil to refer the second phase of the gas drying project for the Gharraf oil field to the consortium of the Oil Projects Company / Ministry of Oil and the Italian PEG company. The amount of the submitted offer is (320,884,293) dollars, with a period of implementation of (35) months and a guarantee of (12) months.

The Council of Ministers decided to approve the amendment of the first paragraph of Cabinet Resolution (23070) for the year 2023 regarding the principles of cooperation for the energy program in Iraq, the second phase, to become as follows:

“Approving the signing of principles of cooperation for the energy program in Iraq, the second phase, between the Ministry of Electricity and Siemens Energy Global Gmbh, which specializes in power plants.”

As part of the efforts of the follow-up on the public services file, the Council of Ministers approved the continuation of the contract between Babil Governorate and (GCITS Babel Limited), (a consortium of companies) referred to in Cabinet Resolution (242 of 2020), regarding the contract for the grand Hilla sewage project / first phase.

After many years of delay, the Council of Ministers ended the land dispute of Al-Shaab International Stadium and agreed to allocate the stadium to the Ministry of Youth and Sports.

The Council of Ministers has approved a proposal by the General Traffic Directorate to impose controls on the sale of distinctive vehicle numbers in public auctions. Additionally, the council has allocated property numbered (7/32/11) to the General Traffic Directorate to implement an investment project to establish a production line for traffic signs, which will comply with all legal requirements and regulations.

The Council of Ministers has approved the Ministry of Interior’s letter dated March 16, 2023, regarding the fees for Iraqi national ID cards.

During the session, the Council of Ministers considered several topics and files presented on its agenda and took the following decisions:

First / Approval of the following:

1- Allocating the approved financial amount in the table of contributions, according to the memorandum of the Council of Ministers and Committees Affairs Department, without specifying the names of the priority organizations; for they all constitute financial obligations for Iraq.

2- All ministries and agencies must coordinate with the Ministry of Finance / the Iraqi Fund for Foreign Development; to schedule payment of the sums owed by Iraq to Arab or international organizations or pay them until December 31, 2022.

3- Consider, in the nomination of representatives of the Republic of Iraq, the high qualifications and professional specialization in Arab and international organizations; For them to compete with the candidates of other countries.

4- Coordinating with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs if a Ministry, or an entity not affiliated with a ministry wishes to withdraw from an Arab or international organization.

5- Coordinating with the Ministries of (Foreign Affairs and Finance), to request participation with an Arab or international organization after obtaining official approvals from the Ministry or the sectoral authority.

6- The Ministry, or the entity not associated with a ministry, can transfer from its financial allocations if it wishes to contribute to a new organization and a financial allocation is not available for it; To pay its financial contributions under the Federal Budget Law.

7- Recommending to the Council of Representatives advising the parliamentary committees and concerned departments not to reduce the amounts of contributions of ministries and entities not linked to a ministry to Arab and international organizations and to include them fully in the Federal Budget Law.

Second / Approval of the following:

First/ Granting a subsequent authority to negotiate and sign a draft agreement on the mutual exemption from entry visas for holders of diplomatic, special, service, and public affairs passports between the Government of the Republic of Iraq and the Government of the People’s Republic of China to the Undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for Bilateral Relations, for his signature on the draft above agreement on June 6, 2022, based on the provisions of Article (6) of the Treaty Contract Law No. (35) of 2015.

Second/ Approval of a bill ratifying an agreement on the mutual exemption from entry visas for holders of diplomatic, special, service, and public affairs passports between the government of the Republic of Iraq and the government of the People’s Republic of China signed in Baghdad on June 6, 2022, and referring it to the Council of Representatives.

Third/ The Ministry of Trade takes the necessary measures to destroy the quantities of wheat (unfit for human consumption).

Fourth / Approval of the Ministerial Council for Social Services’ recommendation (23019) regarding the proposal by nuclear science expert Dr. Hamid Al-Bahili. The proposal relates to the distribution of funds allocated for cleansing Iraq of depleted uranium, which amounts to (4,929,000,000) dinars. The recommendation suggests that the amount be distributed among the budgets of the parties involved in the cleansing process.

Fifth / The authorization of the Council of Ministers for the competent minister, as stipulated in the Opinion Council Law (No. 9 of 2011), to select two external experts with relevant expertise to attend the meetings of the Opinion Council. These experts will not be council members but will be compensated with a financial reward not exceeding 500,000 dinars per session.

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