Spokesman: Iraq Cabinet approves 2015 budget of $105 billion, pending parliamentary approval

BAGHDAD – A government spokesman says Iraq’s Cabinet has approved next year’s budget, sending it to parliament for final approval.

Spokesman Rafid Jabouri said Tuesday that the 2015 budget of 123 trillion Iraqi dinars ($105.48 billion) will run with a deficit of 23 trillion dinars ($19.72 billion).

The approval is considered an achievement for Haider al-Abadi’s government as the previous administration never managed to approve the 2014 budget due to political wrangling.

Jabouri added that the budget calculations are based on an assumed oil price of $60 a barrel.

Iraq holds the world’s fourth largest oil reserves, some 143.1 billion barrels, and oil revenues make up nearly 95 per cent of its budget. The price of oil has fallen by about half since June to around $55 per barrel.