By John Lee.
Finance Minister Hoshyar Zebari (pictured) said on Wednesday that Iraq has decided to issue $5 billion in international bonds, as it attempts to finance a budget deficit of $25 billion for the current year.
He told reporters in Washington that negotiations were in progress with Citibank and Deutsche Bank, but according to Reuters declined to say what maturity and interest rates were being considered.
He also confirmed that Iraq has also asked the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for relief funding of between $400 million and $700 million.
The government has also managed to borrow $7 billion from semi-state-owned Iraqi banks to cover its shortfall, Zebari said.
(Sources: Reuters, BasNews)