Iraq delays domestic bond issuance to 2015 chief

DUBAI, Jan 27 (Reuters) - Iraq has delayed to next year a plan to issue its first domestic currency bonds in a decade, while an international debt issue is not on the cards for 2014, central bank governor Abdul-Basit Turki Saeed said on Monday.

The government wants to issue its first domestic currency bonds since the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003. The maturity of the bonds would be over five years, officials have said.

"It was supposed to be issued this year but unfortunately it was next year," Saeed said on the sidelines of a financial conference in Dubai, speaking through an interpreter. He cited legal difficulties arranging the issue; he did not elaborate.

"The size of it depends, because it is the first time we issue them," Saeed said, adding that the main reason for issuance would not be to finance the government's budget deficit but to broaden the financial markets and expand investment choices for banks.

Saeed added that there was no plan for an international bond issue this year; he did not comment on the possibility in later years.

Inflation is not a worry at the moment, hovering just above 2 percent, the governor also said, adding that the economy was expected to grow over 8 percent in 2014. (Reporting by Martin Dokoupil; Editing by Andrew Torchia)