In a strategic move following its recent announcement of a ban on cash withdrawals in the US dollar, Iraq's Prime Minister, Mohammed Shia Al Sudani, has informally expressed interest in joining the BRICS alliance. The decision to ban cash withdrawals in the US dollar is set to take effect on January 1, 2024, as Iraq's Central Bank seeks to curb the misuse of foreign remittances. Simultaneously, Iraq is aggressively pursuing de-dollarization initiatives in alignment with the goals of the BRICS alliance.
The Prime Minister's interest in BRICS membership was articulated just days after the announcement of the US dollar ban. Al Sudani confirmed Iraq's readiness to join BRICS, emphasizing that the country is prepared to become a member if invited by the founding countries of the alliance. In an interview with local channel RT, Al Sudani stated, "Iraq is ready to join the BRICS group if it receives an invitation from the founding countries." He further acknowledged Iraq's understanding of the role played by the BRICS group and its awareness of the conditions and specifications for joining.
Iraq, facing longstanding sanctions and economic challenges for two decades, sees joining BRICS as a significant opportunity to revitalize its native economy independently of the US dollar's support. The move aligns with Iraq's broader objective of diversifying its economic partnerships and reducing dependency on a single currency, marking a potential shift in the geopolitical and economic landscape in the region.