The Blogiston Post

Politics, money, and war.

Monday, May 24

budget woes

Back in April, the Open Society Institute’s Iraq Revenue Watch project published a report. In conjunction with a recent article in the Washington Post, the source of the problems becomes clearer. Why such incompetence? Is it really so much more preferable to have politically connected players than it is to have people who are qualified? What an embarrassment.

Financial Planning for Iraq Unsound, New Report Finds
Ahead of a deadline for the transfer of power, the Coalition Provisional Authority’s reporting of Iraqi finances falls short of international standards of accounting and transparency, said a report by the Open Society Institute’s Iraq Revenue Watch project. The report, Opening the Books: Transparent Budgeting for Iraq --- PDF, urges the CPA and the Iraqi Governing Council to make further improvements in accordance with these standards before a new Iraqi government is elected in 2005.


Iraq’s 2004 budget, produced by the CPA and Iraq’s Ministries of Finance and Planning, is the country’s first full-year financial plan since Saddam Hussein’s removal. However, it lacks key information about state-owned enterprises, financing for sub-national governments, and contingencies that pose significant risks to Iraq’s public purse. There is no contingency planning for what Iraq will do if oil prices fall or exports are disrupted, if hostilities resume, or foreign aid fails to materialize.
In Iraq, the Job Opportunity of a Lifetime
Managing a $13 Billion Budget With No Experience
In short order, six of the new young hires found themselves managing the country's $13 billion budget, making decisions affecting millions of Iraqis. [...] But they were also involved in higher-level policy decisions -- revising the 2004 budget, shifting around money as priorities changed and formulating plans for replacing the food baskets Iraqi families got each month with cash payments.
What was the White House thinking?


Post a Comment

<< Home