For Immediate Release
December 8, 2003
From a Coalition Provisional Authority briefing, 12/5/03
"The future of the Iraqi people should not be mortgaged to the
enormous burden of debt incurred to enrich Saddam Hussein's regime.
This debt endangers Iraq's long-term prospects for political health and
economic prosperity. The issue of Iraq's debt must be resolved in a
manner that is fair and that does not unjustly burden a struggling
nation at its moment of hope and promise." --President Bush, 12/5/03
- Former Secretary of State and former Secretary of the Treasury,
James Baker III, has been named President Bush's envoy on Iraq's
external financial obligations.
- Reducing Iraq's debt obligations, sovereign debt and private debt
obligations has been a high priority for the Iraqi Governing Council
and Ambassador Bremer.
- Iraq's Minister of Finance, Kamil Gailani, welcomed Baker's
appointment. Gailani said the appointment will give significant
momentum to the process of resolving Iraq's external financial
- Iraq's total indebtedness is difficult to quantify at this point.
The estimates have been as high as $125 billion.
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