In its regular meeting on Wednesday, the Kurdistan Region Council of Ministers discussed and adopted proposed revisions to the salary distribution system, based on funds currently available and projected.
In a press conference after the meeting, Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani briefed the media on the revised salary distribution system. He said the KRG fully understands the hardship being faced by those on government payroll and the related negative impact on the economy that has adversely affected many others. He thanked the people of Kurdistan for enduring such financial difficulties.
Prime Minister Barzani emphasized that he fully respects the people’s right to protest peacefully. Violent protest, however, cannot be tolerated and it is the government’s responsibility to handle it with restraint and in accordance to the law.
Minister of Finance and Economy Rebaz Hamlan explained the revised salary distribution system that significantly reduces amounts withheld (saved) from most staff members, pensioners, social welfare beneficiaries, martyrs’ families, and Anfal victims families.
The revision includes monthly salaries of:
- Up to 400,000 Iraqi dinars – no amount will be withheld
- 400,000 to 5,000,000 Iraqi dinars – 10 to 30 percent to be withheld
- Above 5,000,000 Iraqi dinars – 75 percent to be withheld
While the financial situation remains fragile, it is intended that as available funds increase, amounts being withheld will be further reduced. This will occur in accordance with reforms and transparency processes being guided by the international accounting firms Deloitte and Ernst & Young. A draft reform law currently before the Kurdistan Parliament aims toward ending the current withholding (saving) system.
Minister of Martyrs and Anfal Affairs Mahmoud Haji Saleh explained, during the Council of Ministers meeting, that the Iraqi Parliament adopted a resolution favoring families of martyrs, Anfal victims, and political prisoners in the Kurdistan Region with grants and privileges, to be paid by the Iraqi government in accordance with the Constitution, and which the KRG has been working on since 2015.
The KRG Council of Ministers thanked the Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi and members of the Iraqi Parliament, particularly the members representing Kurdistan Region, who helped pass this resolution.