Baghdad: Haider Al-Jaber
The government attaches great importance to reforming the government banking sector, which dominates about 85 percent of investments in this vital sector.
The Prime Minister’s Advisor for Financial Affairs, Mazhar Muhammad Saleh, explained to “Al-Sabah” that
“there are priorities in the pace of economic reform that the government program brought in spirit and letter, as
reforming the government banking sector and returning it to work on the basis of efficiency and high competitiveness is the main goal of the financial reform that it seeks.”
The government reached it within the scope of a broad program of economic and institutional reform and building a modern banking market in accordance with the requirements of the Constitution. Saleh added,
“The government banking sector dominates more than 85 percent of the sector’s total investments, but
at the same time it suffers from a heavy legacy as a result of its faltering for more than four decades of instability in the face of the progress that has afflicted banking in the world,” noting that “this matter
“It necessitated that the financial and banking sector take priority in the basic reform package.” The government's financial advisor added,
"The development plans required to be submitted by government banks will reflect the banks' capabilities for reform and the corrective decisions required to be taken to proceed with the major banking reform process to achieve the goal of reform."
Banking reform plans face difficult obstacles, difficult for several reasons, as they lack a number of foundations that push the process forward.
Banking expert Mahmoud Dagher said in an interview with “Al-Sabah”:
“Reforming government banks is one of the most difficult tasks due to their functional slackness and incomplete data, as well as problems in their budgets with accumulations dating back a long time,” indicating that
“these banks are prohibited from international dealings.”
“There are sanctions on some procedures that took place before 2003, in addition to the difficulty of establishing a technological banking system that enables it to develop.” Dagher continued,
"Since 2018, Rafidain Bank has not been able to install the technological banking system," stressing that
"there is difficulty in reforming government banks if there is no change in ownership, improving the performance of employees, and establishing the banking system." Dagher concluded,
“Banks are a modern banking system through which all branches are able to communicate and exchange information and restrictions with the center.”