Iraqi Parliament approves 2021 budget

The Iraqi Parliament has endorsed a bill for the 2021 budget with about $89 billion and a deficit of $19 billion after months of delay due to political differences.

A statement by the media office of Parliament said 215 lawmakers attended a session chaired by Speaker Mohammed al-Halbousi on Wednesday and passed the budget, reports Xinhua news agency.

The proposed budget was set on the basis of an average oil price of 45 dollars per barrel and export of 3.25 million barrels per day (bpd), including 250,000 bpd exported from the Kurdish region, said the statement.

The approval came after months of debates among various political blocs over multiple controversial items, including a 12.67 per cent allocation from the national budget to the semi-autonomous Kurdistan region.

According to Iraqi law, the annual budget must also be approved by the President before going into effect.

Iraq’s economy heavily relies on the export of crude oil, which accounts for more than 90 per cent of the country’s revenue.