Iraq corporate bank account
Our Clients will be required to open a corporate bank account in Iraq. Healy Consultants will guide our Clients through the entire process by the preparing the application, submitting the requisite documentation and if required, attending the interview at the bank. Please find below additional information regarding corporate banking in the country.
- Iraq’s banking market is made up of state banks, private sector banks (local and foreign), Islamic banks, and financial companies and institutions. Please refer to a complete list of banks and financial institutions operating in Iraq;
- The Iraqi banking scene is dominated by the 7 state owned banks which control 91% of all assets and receive 89% of all deposits in the banking market. This over-reliance on the state banks is due to the implicit guarantee to their deposits by the Iraqi government in case there is ever a run on the bank. However, local private banks do not enjoy the same privilege which is why Healy Consultants discourages all its Clients from opting for local private banks;
- Our experts will assist our Client open their corporate bank account with international banks like Standard Chartered Iraq, T.C. Ziraat Bank and Vakif Bank. Alternatively, our Client may also choose local Iraqi banks if it suits their business needs;
- In Iraq, companies will have access to only a limited range of corporate and personal banking products. International private banks like Standard Chartered are not well established in the country which limits the presence of ATMs and reduces the possibility of issue of debit and credit cards. Furthermore, internet banking facilities and customer care service will be of a poor standard;
- Our Clients are allowed to conduct spot transactions in any currency of their choice. However, forward speculation with regards to any currency including the Dinar is not permitted in Iraq;
- Lastly, multiple currency accounts are still rare in Iraq and so, it is possible that our Client might have to open two bank accounts – one denominated in Iraqi Dinar for covering local expenses and the other one in US dollar for making international payments.
Healy Consultants services
- Our services include assisting our Clients in i) opening the company bank account and ii) obtaining access to internet banking facilities. Our experts can complete this entire process within 5 weeks. Our fee for this service will be US$3,950;
- Healy Consultants will liaise with the banks to prevent our Clients from travelling for the interview. However, there is still a 80% chance that the bank may require our Clients to travel for a one hour interview;
- Following account opening approval, the bank will directly and independently email our Client the corporate bank account number.
Foreign Exchange Controls
The Iraqi Government imposes limited foreign exchange controls in the country. While there are no restrictions on exchanging Iraqi Dinar for other foreign currencies, there will be certain bureaucratic requirements set by the Central Bank that companies will be required to fulfil.
- Companies can purchase foreign currency to complete transactions with non-Iraqi entities through their banks but they must relevant invoices as proof of transaction;
- Companies are allowed to open foreign currency bank accounts and make payments with those bank accounts after showing proof of balance;
- A tax clearance certificate must be issued by the General Commission of Taxes before currency worth 15 million Iraqi Dinar can be converted into foreign currency;
- Lastly, when travelling out of Iraq, bank notes up to value of US$10,000 can be carried without obtaining authorization from the Central Bank.