Iranian Energy Minister Reza Ardakanian says the country will continue to export electricity to Iraq for two more years in defiance of the US sanctions.
Ardakanian made the remarks during a visit to the Iraqi capital of Baghdad, where he met Iraqi electricity minister.
The Iranian official also noted that Iraq has settled half of the money it owes to Iran for the electricity imports so far, and the settlement of the other half is being processed.
In turn, Iraqi Electricity Minister Majed Hantoush said in his meeting with Ardakanian that Baghdad’s debts to Iran for electricity imports from the country have been put on the agenda and the issue is being dealt with by the Iraqi finance ministry.
He thanked Iran for exporting 1,200 megawatts of electricity to Iraq.
The minister noted this amount of electricity imports is very important in the summer season.
Baghdad hopes Iran’s electricity exports to the country will not decrease this summer, he said, expressing gratitude to the Islamic Republic for meeting Iraq’s demand for electricity.
The Iranian minister, for his part, said Iran has vowed to help Iraq improve its electricity sector.
“Around one and a half years ago, an agreement was signed with Iraqi officials during a trip to Iraq, and we promised that the Iraqi electricity industry will get to a desirable state in a three-year plan,” he said.
“In this regard, and with regards to Iraq’s interests, no other country would have offered Iraq the proposals that we did,” he said.
“These proposals include creating the potential for manpower, reconstructing its installations, reducing losses and offering engineering services,” said Iran’s electricity minister.
“Last year, despite problems, including supplying natural gas to power plants, we tried hard to meet Iraq’s demand for electricity and fulfill our duty with regards to serving the Iraqi nation in the best way possible,”
“This year, our situation is very different, and early heat as well as the coronavirus outbreak has led to a rise in power consumption in Iran, and electricity consumption in the country has registered an unprecedented increase compared to that of last year, and we have a tough situation ahead of us this year,” the Iranian minister said.