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Iraq: Buoyant oil revenues mask deeper problems

Despite continuing, widespread protests focused on official corruption and mismanagement, Iraq enters 2020 with relatively solid economic metrics. Oil exports in 2019 broke records, averaging 3.53m barrels a day (b/d), with 97% of it exported via Basra. With prices heading above $60/barrel, there are sufficient revenues to fund state spending. The World Bank anticipates GDP growing by a respectable 5% this year, thanks to higher crude exports, better rainfall and stronger domestic consumption, fed by an expanding public sector wage bill.

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