KRG announces salary disbursement amid financial challenges

KRG announces salary disbursement amid financial challenges

Shafaq News/ The Kurdish Ministry of Finance and Economy announced the disbursement of February's salary to employees.

According to a schedule obtained by Shafaq News Agency, salary distribution will begin next Saturday, March 30, to the employees of the ministries of Health, Finance, Interior, and Social Affairs, along with retirees and people with special needs.

The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) has faced significant challenges in meeting the timely and complete payment of salaries to its civil servants for the past decade. This financial strain intensified following a ruling by a Paris-based arbitration court that suspended the KRG's oil exports to international markets a year ago, exacerbating its financial crisis.

As a result, the KRG has been heavily reliant on local income sources and its allocated share from the federal budget, which has been a subject of controversy. Despite efforts to manage its fiscal situation, the KRG has consistently struggled to meet its salary obligations.

The Federal Supreme Court of Iraq's decision worsened the situation by issuing a ruling ordering the "localization" of salaries for all Kurdistan Region employees in federal banks. This decision has resulted in the halt of salary disbursements, leading to numerous strikes across various sectors.

Last year, the KRG managed to pay nine salaries to public employees, but this year, it has only been able to pay one salary so far.

The federal government disbursed around 600 billion dinars to cover the February salaries of KRG civil servants, excluding security forces. However, Erbil declined to accept the partial payment, insisting on receiving the total amount required for salaries. The KRG indicated that the received funds accounted for only about 60 percent of the total salary expenses, underscoring the ongoing financial strain and the challenges in meeting salary obligations for its workforce.

After a cabinet session, Kurdish Prime Minister Masrour Barzani said, "The federal government is ethically accountable for fulfilling its promises to ensure salary payments. We have fulfilled all our obligations and aim for this to mark a new phase of timely salary distribution."

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