Has Warka Bank Collapsed?

Speculation is rife that Iraq’s Warka Bank has collapsed, but its managing director said that it has not collapsed but has faced problems due to a recent decision of the Iraqi government to withdraw over $1.6 billion from the bank.

Our resident blogger on economic issues, Mark DeWeaver, recently reported on the mysteries of Warka's rights issue.

The Iraqi government recently decided to withdraw its money from all private banks, leading to media reports that Warka Bank had collapsed, according to a report from AKnews.

Speaking during a press conference in Sulaimaniya, Mohammed Hussein said, “Warka Bank has not collapsed. It is just some problems we are facing which will be resolved soon and we will resume our work in a better way.”

He said the Iraqi Trade Ministry owes $250 million to the bank but has failed to return the money because of the changes in the leadership of the ministry.

On his part, Dler Mohammed, the head of Warka’s branch in Kurdistan said the Iraqi minister of finance has agreed to give a loan of around $64 million to the bank.

He added several British and Lebanese companies have also agreed to buy shares in Warkaa but did not provide the names of the companies.

Mohammed said following the government’s decision, the Iraqi Public Vehicle Company withdrew around $680 million from the bank, and citizens withdrew around $1 billion.

“During talks with officials at Kurdistan’s Ministry of Finance, they promised us to return the pensions for retired government personnel to Warka Bank,” said Mohammed.

Warka bank was established in 1999 and currently is one of the largest private banks in Iraq with 120 branches all over the country.

Al Sumaria News quotes a spokesman for the bank as saying that the bank “is supported by the Central Bank of Iraq and can not talk about bankruptcy”, and added that the rumours were an attempt by the bank's competitors to tarnish its reputation.

(Sources: AKnews, Al Sumaria)

4 Responses to Has Warka Bank Collapsed?

  1. [...] Bank issued a statement on Wednesday refuting the rumours (click here for more details) that it was in financial [...]

  2. Dil Kazzaz 11th October 2011 at 22:53 #

    I just came back from Iraq. The purpose of my trip was to check on a substantial account I have at Warka Bank. I visited the branch where the account was held and I was disgusted with the state of things there. I entered the bank with greetings from four tea drinking soap opera watching guards manning the door, no weapons and no questions asked of me. Passing them I saw a group of six or seven young girls gathered around the desk of the most popular of them, chatting - they looked like they were chatting about everything but work. A pretty young girl tried to get my attention and offered help. After I told her what I was there for she offered her support and sorrow for my loss and said that there is nothing that the bank or she can do and that there isn't even any visible hope at this time. So that is the state of things for those of you who are like me who are searching for any news about Warka bank.
    later I talked to a friend, high up in Asia Cell that lost 31 million in the bank, he told me that the only hope there is now is for the Ministry of Treasury to loan the bank so it can pay its debt. Take that as the best news available now. What has made matters worse for the bank is the combination of the government withdrawing their deposits from a bank they don't like and the complacency of borrowers not paying back loan they took to a bank that is quasi bankrupt.
    To those like me I say; If you want to do something about your loss, the time is now. We should for a group to pressure anyone we can think of to get the Iraqi government to move on this. What can be done is open to us; efforts like Iraqi embassy contact, Wall Street news spreading, Legal action, establishing web presence to strengthen our resolve and connecting with those in inside Iraq who are in the same situation.

  3. Dil Kazzaz 18th October 2011 at 18:34 #

    I have just established "Iraq's Warka Bank Victims" a Facebook page. I encourage those concerned to help me make it useful to all.

  4. saman 18th March 2013 at 09:42 #

    I am hopeless of gaining my money back from Warkaa ... It has been 3 years aiming to withdrwa my money which is 18 000 000 ID but unfortunalately all the time I visit Warkaa branch in Sulaoimaniyah they replied dont waste your time there rae no new news.
    I demand all Warkaa custumers to gather and arrange a wide spread demonstration all over Iraq to force Iraqi government to resolve this issue ASAP.


  1. Warka Bank Hits Back at Rumours | Iraq Business News - 22nd September 2010

    [...] Bank issued a statement on Wednesday refuting the rumours (click here for more details) that it was in financial [...]