ARLINGTON, Va. and BASRA Iraq – Iraqis will be getting some advice on good credit from a U.S. credit union. Information about the wise use of credit cards will be televised in Iraq on Al-Iraqiya Television, the station operated by Harris Corporation under a $96 million Pentagon contract. The TV channel held an interview with Susan King, Community Outreach Co-ordinator of the State Department Federal Credit Union (SDFCU). The filming was done at SDFCU headquarters in Arlington, Virginia. King discussed the importance of consumers staying within budgets, security and fraud avoidance. Because there are no firms offering credit histories, decisions to grant credit cards will be based on reputation and relationships. The Iraq Central Bank (ICB) announced in March that the National Company for Limited Financial Services, a private firm with the Bahrain bank as the major investor would begin issuing the Al-Fayha Credit Card in Basra. If successful, there are plans to expand into other Iraqi cities, according to Zuhair Ali Akbar, Director General of the Basra branch of the ICB. “For the first time, we will have an Iraqi credit card, which is certain to increase trust between shop owners, creditors and customers, and to contribute to the development of banking in Iraq,” he said. The SDFCU interview was set up by the State Department, according to Joan Kayne, SDFCU vice president of marketing and business development.

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