Blog posts tagged with 'Dinar'

Dinar is served; Investors caught between Iraq and a hard place- Sunday, August 26, 2012

Dinar is served

Investors caught between Iraq and a hard place

Thousands of Main Street investors, fed up with a stock market that has barely moved in more than a decade, are seeking out heftier returns in more exotic investments.

And then there is Ryan Williams.

Williams, 35, of Bakersfield, Calif., has abandoned US stocks and bonds for one of the chanciest investments on the map: the Iraqi dinar.

The small-business owner said he has been buying Iraqi dinars regularly since he was first turned on to them around 2005. His last purchase: just this month.

“There’s risk in anything,” he told The Post in a recent interview, explaining why he gave up US stocks and bonds in favor of the world of currencies. “I think our economy has shown us that.”

Iraqi dinar investing figures in the plot of “Hit and Run,” starring Kristen Bell, above, giving Hollywood heft to a potentially explosive bet.

Williams is not alone in investing in the currency of the war-torn country. There is a growing number of dinar devotees betting that the currency — currently pegged at 1,165 dinars per US dollar — could one day spike in value if Iraq’s new government gets on its feet, begins profiting from its massive oil supplies and revalues its currency.

The exotic investors point to currency spikes in West Germany following World War II and in Kuwait following its 1990 invasion as proof the strategy works.

The potential for riches has opportunity-hungry investors so eager for information that Paul Christopher of Wells Fargo said he gets more questions about the controversial paper than any other currency except, more recently, the euro.

“I don’t get many currency questions as frequently as I get questions about the dinar,” Christopher, the chief international investment strategist for Wells Fargo, told The Post.

Indeed, knowledge of the once-obscure currency trade is reflected in “Hit and Run,” a new movie starring Bradley Cooper and Kristen Bell.

Bell, who plays a university professor in love with a former bank robber, derides Cooper’s dinar deal as a “get-rich-quick” scheme.

Wells Fargo’s Christopher agrees with Bell’s assessment — and not just because of the ongoing geopolitical turmoil that could tumble the current government.

The Iraqi dinar isn’t held by US banks or traded by major currency exchanges, so interested investors must locate dealers who will deliver the investment in paper form.

That means higher risk for fraud, which has been increasing around this trade in recent years, according to warnings from the Better Business Bureau.

But it also means higher markups to buy the currency, plus storage fees. Selling the dinar could also be pricey, given the lack of big, institutional buyers.

At dealer DinarTrade, for example, buying 1 million dinars will cost $1,020, according to the website. But selling them back will earn you just $810, said DinarTrade founder Ali Agha, citing the unfavorable exchange rate by the Central Bank of Iraq.

Still, Agha, one of the few dealers rated favorably by the Better Business Bureau, doesn’t see interest in the trade fading anytime soon, given the degree to which mom-and-pop investors — who make up the bulk of his clientele — have been burned by stocks and real estate.

“Main Street doesn’t believe in the stock market anymore,” Agha said.

Import of 60 armored vehicles for the transfer of funds between Iraqi banks- Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Import of 60 armored vehicles for the transfer of funds between Iraqi banks

Translation:  Finance 60 US-made armored truck, to transfer money between Iraqi banks. The sources said the reporter Agency (dinars), "The Ministry of Finance has imported 60 trucks armored American made, dedicated to the transfer of funds between banks in Baghdad and the provinces, adding that the new trucks armored and can not be breached even improvised explosive device., The sources added, quoting a Force Personnel Protection and the Ministry of Finance he new trucks were imported due to the worn out old trucks. Iraq has witnessed many incidents of theft of money banking during the transfer process during the deterioration of security after the 2003 World especially in Alosth region and west of it.

United Nations: Iraq Update June 2012, Security Council- Thursday, May 31, 2012

United Nations: Iraq Update June 2012, Security Council


Expected Council Action
The funding for the activities of the High-level Coordinator who advises the Council on the Iraq-Kuwait missing persons and property issue, is due to expire in mid-June. The Council is expected to receive a report on the issue, pursuant to paragraph 14 of resolution 1284, and a briefing in consultations by the coordinator, Gennady Tarasov. The Council is likely to issue a press statement on the coordinator’s activities and supporting the extension of the coordinator’s funding.

The Council is also expecting the second report of the Secretary-General, pursuant to paragraph 6 ofresolution 1956, on the post-Development Fund for Iraq (DFI) mechanism. At press time it was not clear if the Council would consider the report in June.

The mandate of the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) expires on 28 July.

Key Recent Developments
On 10 April, Martin Kobler, head of UNAMI, last briefed the Council. Kobler stated that “Iraq’s political situation is heightening communal tensions in the country.” However, he commended “the Kuwaiti and Iraqi Governments for their efforts to improve bilateral relations.” 

In other significant Iraq-Kuwait related developments, Nasser Hussain Bandar, head of Iraq’s civil aviation authority, said on 5 April that Iraq had agreed to the request of Kuwait’s Jazeera Airways to operate flights to Iraq, more than 20 years after direct flights between the two countries were halted. 

On 16 and 17 April in Kuwait, a delegation from the Iraqi Ministry of Foreign Affairs transmitted Kuwaiti currency, documents, keys for safes belonging to the Central Bank of Kuwait, and 15 microfilm cassettes containing the archives of Al Anba newspaper, to the Kuwaiti authorities. On 20 May in Baghdad, Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari met Tarasov and highlighted these developments. According to the Iraqi Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ website, Zebari also highlighted Iraq’s “serious efforts to find the remains of the Kuwaiti Missing in Action” and his country’s keenness to getting out of Chapter VII.

On 29 April, Sabah al-Khalid al-Hamad al-Sabah, Kuwait’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, attended the second meeting of the joint Iraq-Kuwait Committee, in Baghdad. Following the meeting, Zebari told reporters that the two sides had reached important agreement on cooperation.

In other developments regarding the compensation, on 26 April, the UN Compensation Commission (UNCC) made a payment of $1.02 billion to six claimants. (The Geneva based UNCC was established through Council resolution 692 in 1991, to process claims and pay compensation for losses resulting from Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait in 1990.)

In a 4 May letter to the President of the Council, the President of the Governing Council of the UNCC highlighted Iraq’s contribution to the Compensation Fund stating that “the outstanding balance of $16 billion could be paid in full as early as April 2015.” Furthermore, the letter noted “satisfaction with the continued transfer of 5 per cent of Iraqi oil revenues to the [Compensation] Fund since the transfer of the oversight over Iraqi oil revenues to the Committee of Financial Experts.” 

Human Rights-Related Developments
After a meeting in Baghdad on 25 April with Iraqi Minister of Human Rights Mohammed Shi’a Al-Sudani to review the situation of human rights in Iraq, Kobler welcomed Iraq’s intentions to place greater attention on social, economic and cultural rights, while also remaining committed to promoting and protecting political and civil rights. Noting that human rights are “a cornerstone of every democratic state,” Kobler said that UNAMI would continue its support to the Minister of Human Rights as a key player in ensuring that Iraq meets its international human rights obligations.

Key Issues
A key issue before the Council is the extension of the High-level Coordinator’s activities to help resolve the issue of missing Kuwaiti persons and property.

Another issue for the Council is whether the post-DFI mechanism is functioning in a satisfactory fashion.

On Iraq-Kuwait issues the Council could release a press statement that:

  • acknowledges the recent positive developments;
  • encourages Iraq to make further progress on resolving outstanding issues (including borders, missing persons and property);
  • supports the Secretary-General’s intention to extend the activities of the High-level Coordinator for an additional six months or longer; and
  • reiterates the need to resolve outstanding issues between Iraq and Kuwait before the removal of any further Chapter VII measures imposed during the regime of Saddam Hussein.

On the post-DFI issues the Council could take no action at present while continuing to monitor the progress of the post-DFI mechanism until the audit is conducted. (The first report of the Secretary-General pursuant to paragraph 6 of resolution 1956 [S/2011/795] notes the appointment of the firm Ernst & Young to conduct the 2011 audit of the DFI and its successor account.) 

Council and Wider Dynamics
Most Council members are overall pleased with the recent progress on Iraq-Kuwait issues. Several members feel that it is important for Iraq to make further efforts to fulfil its obligations to Kuwait but they do acknowledge that the recent developments on this issue are encouraging.

The US is the lead country on Iraq issues in general, and the UK is the lead on Iraq-Kuwait issues.

UN Documents

Security Council Resolutions

  • S/RES/2001 (28 July 2011) extended UNAMI’s mandate until 28 July 2012.
  • S/RES/1958 (15 December 2010) terminated the Oil-for-Food programme and established an escrow account to provide indemnification to the UN with regard to the programme for a period of six years.
  • S/RES/1957 (15 December 2010) terminated the Weapons of Mass Destruction-related Chapter VII measures that Iraq was subject to and urged Iraq to ratify the Additional Protocol to the Comprehensive Safeguards Agreement with the IAEA as soon as possible.
  • S/RES/1956 (15 December 2010) extended the Development Fund for Iraq and related immunities a final time until 30 June 2011 and affirmed that five percent of Iraqi proceeds from oil sales would continue to be deposited into a compensation fund after that date.
  • S/RES/1284 (17 December 1999) established UNMOVIC and requested the Secretary-General to report to the Council every four months on the compliance by Iraq with its obligations regarding the repatriation or return of all Kuwaiti and third-country nationals.
  • S/RES/692 (20 May 1991) established the UNCC and the UN Compensation Fund.

Secretary-General’s Reports

  • S/2012/185 (29 March 2012) was the latest Secretary-General’s report on UNAMI.
  • S/2011/795 (22 December 2011) was the first report of the Secretary-General pursuant to paragraph 6 of resolution 1956 about the UN Compensation Fund.

Selected Letters

  • S/2012/332 (4 May 2012) was from the president of the Governing Council of the UN Compensation Commission to the president of the Council.
  • S/2012/309 (10 May 2012) was from Iraq’s Ambassador Hamid al-Bayati to the president of the Council, updating him on the handover of some of the missing Kuwaiti belongings.

Meeting Record

  • S/PV.6747 (10 April 2012) was Kobler’s briefing to the Council.

Security Council Press Statements

  • SC/10490 (15 December 2011) expressed the Council’s intention to continue funding for the activities of the high-level coordinator for missing Kuwaiti persons and property.
  • SC/10307 (30 June 2011) welcomed the Iraqi government’s assumption of autonomy over the DFI.
  • SC/10289 (22 June 2011) expressed the Council’s intention to continue funding for the activities of the high-level coordinator for missing Kuwaiti persons and property.

Other Relevant Facts

Secretary-General’s High-Level Coordinator for Iraq-Kuwait Missing Persons and Property

Gennady Tarasov (Russia)

Full Forecast

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Iraq reached an agreement worth $500 million to settle the debt with Kuwait- Monday, August 8, 2011

Iraq to reach an agreement worth $ 500 million to settle the debt with Kuwait

Arbil, March 14 / March (AKnews) - A media adviser to Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki on Wednesday that Iraq reached an agreement worth $ 500 million with Kuwait to settle debts dating back to the Gulf War prevented Iraqi Airways flights to the West.

It quoted "Reuters" Ali al-Moussawi of Kuwait visited by Iraqi Prime Minister, saying that "Iraq will pay under the agreement of $ 300 million in cash to Kuwait and will invest another $ 200 million in airline joint Kuwaiti-Iraqi."

He added that "Kuwait in contrast to halt legal action against Iraqi Airways."

In 2010 Kuwaiti lawyers tried to detain aircraft for the Iraqi lines in the first flight to London.

The theme of Iraqi Airways is part of a long-standing dispute between Iraq and Kuwait on billions of dollars in damages for invasion of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein of Kuwait in 1990-1991.

Maliki arrived in Kuwait on Wednesday morning at the head of a delegation to discuss the outstanding issues between the two countries.

The debt on top of these files in addition to the demarcation of land and maritime borders and the issue of port Mubarak that created a kind of political tension between Baghdad and Kuwait during the past months.

But the visit comes after the countries have recently expressed their support for the resolution of disputes dating back to the nineties of the last century after Saddam Hussein's invasion of Kuwait in 1990.

Kuwait announced earlier readiness turn the page on the past and start a new page of its foreign relations with Iraq on the basis of mutual respect which positions شاطرها when Iraq over remarks by Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki.

Kuwait rejects Iraq would emerge from Chapter VII of the UN Security Council until the fulfillment of obligations owed with respect to three files is the issue of missing Kuwaitis and archives, as well as the issue of the demarcation of the border between the two countries.

It is possible to affect negotiations the two sides on the decision taken by the UN Security Council in June next on the possibility of the withdrawal of Iraq from Chapter VII.

Abdullah Sabri