Samson: The Arab Monetary Fund publishes the “Strategies for adopting DLT/Blockchain Technologies in Arab Countries”
18th August, 2021
Great opportunities for enhancing financial services by fostering the use of DLT/ Blockchain Technologies in Arab Countries
Guidelines and roadmap on how to embrace these technologies in the financial sector, how to employ it properly and the related requirements
The Arab Monetary Fund (AMF) issued today Tuesday, August 17, 2021, Policy Guide on “Strategies for Adopting DLT/ Blockchain Technologies in Arab Countries” prepared by the Arab Regional Fintech Working Group (WG), which AMF has its technical secretariat. The guide is being issued in the framework of the Fund’s endeavours to promote awareness of the requirements for developing Fintech industry and supporting digital financial transformation efforts in Arab countries.
The guide aims to provide policy directions on how to adopt these technologies in the financial sector, how to employ them properly, the related pre-requisites; thereby improving the efficiency of financial and banking services and enhancing support for digital financial transformation and financial inclusion efforts.
The guide elaborates on the various types of Distributed Ledger Technologies (DLT) and blockchain, clarifies common myths and misconceptions about them, highlights their governance methodologies, and the initiatives of different countries in adopting these technologies and how to formulate national strategies.
The guide also addresses Distributed Ledger Technologies (DLT) and blockchain applications in the financial sector, and how to overcome the implementation challenges.
In this regard, the guide provides multiple sets of recommendations and roadmap with a range of action plans and considerations when these technologies are applied at the local level. These policy recommendations include formulating strategies to employ DLT and blockchain at the national level, taking into account different models for blockchain governance, building standards for technical solutions using DLT and blockchain, the shared interoperable blockchain system, the integration with legacy system, developing capacity and building awareness, as well as partnership with the private sector.
The recommendations highlight the need for integration with other services, for example smart contracts, digital signature, key custody and security solutions, in addition to the integration with other technologies such as artificial intelligence, big data and the Internet of Things. These would also include aspects of cost analysis, prioritizing leading use cases at the national level, and operationalizing the regulatory and supervisory tools embedded on blockchain networks.
Finally, the guide includes an evaluation matrix to follow up the progress in adopting these techniques, including several indicators. These indicators address respective aspects of building an ecosystem for distributed ledger and blockchain technologies, including indicators of organizational, technical, research, user engagement, and industry indicators.
The guide was prepared and reviewed by representatives of Arab Central Banks, the Arab Monetary Fund (AMF), the Egypt Post, the Islamic Development Bank Group (IsDB), the World Bank Group (WBG) and Karam Legal Consultants members of the Arab Regional Fintech WG, as well as experts from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), and the World Economic Forum (WEF).
In this context, His Excellency Dr. Abdulrahman Al-Hamidy, Director General Chairman of the Board of Arab Monetary Fund, noted with appreciations the initiatives of the Arab Reginal Fintech Working Group in issuing guidelines providing advice to the relevant authorities in the areas of Fintech, strengthening digital financial services, and supporting innovations and access to formal financial services. H.E referred to the great opportunities offered by promoting the use of DLT and blockchain in the financial services. He added his wishes that the guide would contribute to raise awareness of deploying such technologies.
Finally, he noted with appreciations the ongoing cooperation of the Arab Reginal Fintech Working Group with international institutions, research centers and universities.
Samson: Kurdistan Region suspends official working hours next Thursday
17th August, 2021
Today, Tuesday, the Kurdistan Regional Government decided to suspend the official working hours next Thursday.
A source I followed (Al-Oula News) said, “The Kurdistan Regional Government has decided to suspend the official working hours in all its official departments next Thursday on the occasion of Ashura.”
It is noteworthy that a number of Iraqi provinces, including the holy Karbala and Najaf, decided today, Tuesday, to suspend official working hours tomorrow, Wednesday, and the day after tomorrow, Thursday, on the occasion of Tasua and Ashura. LINK
Samson: The Iraqi Stock Exchange will stop trading on Thursday
18th August, 2021
The Iraq Stock Exchange announced, on Wednesday, that it will stop its activity tomorrow, Thursday, due to an official holiday.
The market said in a statement received by Shafaq News Agency, that “based on the decision of the Council of Ministers to declare an official holiday on Thursday, due to the presence of a religious occasion, it will not organize the trading session for shares for that day.”
The market added that “it will start its activity after the official holiday and starting next Sunday, according to its official timings.”
It is noteworthy that the Iraq Stock Exchange (the Iraqi Stock Exchange) organizes five trading sessions a week from Sunday to Thursday, and includes 103 Iraqi joint stock companies representing the sectors of banking, telecommunications, industry, agriculture, insurance, financial investment, tourism and hotels.
Samson: World Bank: Iraq burns more than 17 billion cubic meters of gas annually
17th August, 2021
According to the latest data of the World Bank, Iraq burns more than seventeen billion cubic meters of gas annually, ranking second after Russia, and the emissions equivalent to carbon dioxide emitted are equivalent to about ten percent of total global emissions.
The Minister of Environment and Agency Jassem Al-Falahi said in a statement that the government is taking a serious step towards the use of renewable energies, according to what was stated in the economic reform paper, in which the optimum use of these energies was encouraged, noting that the Prime Minister paid great attention to the environmental sector in light of the growing problem of climate change.
During its participation in the International Conference on Climate Change at the end of this year in Britain, Iraq is heading to announce its accession to the Environmentally Friendly Economy Initiative, which provides for reducing the use of oil for energy and using renewable energies and agricultural, industrial and tourism fields as diverse sources of income. LINK
Samson: Parliamentary Foreign Ministry: The Baghdad summit must come out with an international charter that preserves the sovereignty and rights of Iraq
17th August, 2021
On Tuesday, a member of the Parliamentary Foreign Relations Committee, Nahida Al-Daini, called for the conclusion of a long-term international charter that guarantees Iraq’s economic rights with neighboring countries and preserves security sovereignty during the Baghdad summit, which will be held at the end of this month.
Al-Daini said that “the Baghdad summit should be a door for Iraq to get out of the cloaks of security interference and external domination of the local economy and control of the private sector and its management in accordance with the interests of neighboring countries,” stressing “the inclusion of the regional water file, and the conclusion of a long-term agreement that guarantees Iraq’s water rights on the riparian rivers.” Sharing the damages of drought and water scarcity in accordance with international norms.
Al-Dini called on the Iraqi government and the countries participating in the conference to “save Iraq and get it out of the grip of external security interventions and violations of sovereignty in several border areas and to oblige neighboring countries to participate in the fight against terrorism and prevent the infiltration of terrorist groups in order to preserve common international interests.”
And he expressed his hope that “the Baghdad summit will be a new page of strong relations with neighboring countries in a way that guarantees the interests of Iraq and frees it from the economic and political problems that have accumulated for many years.”
Iraq is preparing to hold the Baghdad summit at the end of this month, with the participation of neighboring countries and a number of major countries, to discuss and address security and economic problems. LINK
Samson: Turkey builds border wall with Iran
17th August, 2021
In recent days, Turkey has begun building a 243-kilometer border wall with Iran to stop the flow of Afghan immigrants.
Agence France-Presse in Arabic said on its account in Twitter” that “Ankara in recent days, it has accelerated the construction of a border wall with Iran, which is scheduled to be 243 kilometers long.
“This wall aims to stop the flow of Afghan migrants who have been entering for months,” she said.Turkey across its eastern border. LINK
Samson: An attack targeting a convoy of the International Coalition north of Baghdad
17th August, 2021
A security source reported, on Tuesday, that a convoy of support for the International Coalition was targeted by an explosion north of the capital, Baghdad.
The source told Shafaq News Agency, that an explosive device was planted on the side of the road north of Baghdad, and it exploded this afternoon as a logistical convoy of the international coalition passed. He pointed out that the explosion did not result in any casualties.
Yesterday evening, Monday, a security source told Shafaq News Agency, “An explosive device exploded targeting a logistical support convoy of the International Coalition while it was passing within the southern borders of Baghdad, without injuries.”
Hours later, another security source told Shafaq News Agency, “An explosive device targeted a convoy of logistical support near the Sabba field bridge, south of Nasiriyah, the center of Dhi Qar governorate.”
Samson: Severe imprisonment sentences two employees for embezzling 6 billion dinars
18th August, 2021
The Supreme Judicial Council reported, on Wednesday, the issuance of four sentences of severe imprisonment for two years for two employees of the Ministry of Health after they were convicted of embezzlement of more than six billion dinars.
The council said in a statement received by Shafaq News Agency, “The Rusafa Criminal Court, which is specialized in integrity issues in the presidency of the Baghdad Rusafa Federal Appeal Court, issued four sentences of severe imprisonment for two years to two employees of the Ministry of Health for embezzling more than six billion Iraqi dinars by disbursing salaries for protections.” They are fictitious who are not contracting with the Ministry of the Interior, as they are members of the committee to receive the salaries of the protection of the Ministry of Health.”
He added that “the court obligated the convicts to pay the embezzled amount in favor of the Ministries of Health and the Interior, in accordance with the provisions of Article 321 of the Penal Code.”
The statement indicated that “the court found the evidence obtained sufficient and convincing to convict the accused in accordance with the provisions of Article 315 / Part Two of the Penal Code and in the meaning of Articles 47, 48 and 49 of it.” LINK