Iraq Economic Forecast

Iraq Economic Outlook

November 28, 2017

Tensions between the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) and the central government eased in recent weeks after KRG Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani accepted the Supreme Federal Court’s ruling that the 25 September independence referendum was illegal. Barzani also stated that the federal government should cancel the measures adopted against the region in the aftermath of the referendum and urged Baghdad to negotiate an agreement regarding the management of oil exports and federal budget allocation to the Kurdish areas, issues of long-standing disagreement. On 21 November, IMF officials continued discussions on the third review of the Standby Arrangement, noting that progress is being made towards reaching an agreement on the 2018 budget.

Iraq Economic Growth

Economic growth is expected to pick up steam next year. That said, the lack of structural reforms; large fiscal imbalances; and lingering political tensions, particularly between the federal government and the KRG, represent sizeable risks to Iraq’s growth outlook. FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists see growth of 2.6% in 2018, which is down 0.2 percentage points from last month’s projection. In 2019, they see growth at 3.6%.

Iraq Economy Data

Population (million)32.633.434.335.236.1
GDP per capita (USD)6,6937,0226,8464,676-  
GDP (USD bn)218235235164-  
Economic Growth (GDP, annual variation in %)12.65.6-3.9-2.4-  
Industrial Production (annual variation in %)
Unemployment Rate15.315.115.015.516.1
Fiscal Balance (% of GDP)4.1-5.8-5.3-12.3-  
Public Debt (% of GDP)34.831.231.855.0-  
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %)
Policy Interest Rate (%)
Exchange Rate (vs USD)1,1641,1651,1431,0961,182
Exchange Rate (vs USD, aop)1,1641,1631,1631,1481,171
Current Account (% of GDP)13.59.610.42.5-  
Current Account Balance (USD bn)29.522.624.44.1-  
Trade Balance (USD billion)35.230.430.810.2-  
Exports (USD billion)94.289.884.043.4-  
Imports (USD billion)59.059.353.233.2-  
Exports (annual variation in %)18.2-4.7-6.4-48.3-  
Imports (annual variation in %)23.40.6-10.4-37.6-  
International Reserves (USD)70.377.766.451.142.2
External Debt (% of GDP)27.725.324.540.8-  

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Iraq Facts

Exchange Rate1,1820.0 %Dec 06

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