Tuesday, October 14, 2003

Iraq's interim administration is relying on oil sales to balance its books in 2004 - and foreign aid to cover the cost of reconstruction.

The administration has unveiled its 2004 budget, with projected spending of $13.5bn and a deficit of $600m...

"This budget represents an important step toward the rebuilding of Iraq by Iraqis," he said.

"The budget was prepared by a team of Iraqi experts, with a series of budget hearings attended by representatives from the various Iraqi ministries and chaired by the officials of the Minstry of Finance."

The budget would be "funded by available Iraqi resources" and not "increased borrowing, printing money or foreign assistance", he added.

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