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Iran, Iraq Sign Long-term Strategic Energy Contract
By Staff, Agencies
Iran signed a long-term strategic electricity contract with Iraq to provide its Arab neighbor with sustainable energy supplies, Iranian Minister of Energy Ali Akbar Mehrabian said.
The Islamic Republic is already a key energy provider to Iraq which faces chronic electricity shortages despite sitting on the world’s fourth largest oil reserves.
“Given that we are facing a surplus of electricity production in the country at many times of the year, we pursue the development of energy diplomacy centered on electricity with neighbors in order to both solve their problems and create a stable flow of income and use the maximum capacity of our electricity network,” Iranian media on Wednesday quoted Mehrabian as saying.
The minister touched on Iran's self-sufficiency in the technical knowledge of power plant construction, saying that the construction of 1,950 megawatts of power plants so far has been implemented by Iranian companies with the investment of the Iraqi side.
The knowledge-based companies of Iran’s private sector are also implementing the construction of 1,700 megawatts of power plants in Iraq, he added.
The conclusion of long-term strategic contracts in the electricity sector has been one of the centerpieces of the Iranian government's “dynamic regional diplomacy which has brought brilliant results for the country,” the minister underlined.
“In this regard, we prepared the ground for the first long-term cooperation in the electricity sector with Iraq, and signed an important and strategic contract with the country,” he added.
Mehrabian cited international reports, saying that the largest electricity production and distribution capacity among the West Asian countries belongs to Iran.
The agreement comes amid unilateral US sanctions reimposed on Iran since 2018, which forbid countries from purchasing Iranian energy.
It also comes after Iraqi authorities announced on Saturday the signing of a deal with Saudi Arabia for connecting their electricity grids.
Saudi media widely touted the agreement as a step to help Iraq with its electricity woes and reducing energy dependence on Iran.
Iraq relies on Iran for natural gas that generates as much as 45 percent of its 14,000 megawatts of electricity consumed daily. Iran transmits another 1,000 megawatts directly, making itself an indispensable energy source for its Arab neighbor.
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