Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Official: US allowed Iraq to release frozen Iranian assets worth hundreds of millions

An Iranian official says the US has allowed Iraq to released Iranian assets worth $500 million, as the two neighbors make efforts to boost economic and energy cooperation despite American sanctions.

The secretary-general of Iran-Iraq Joint Chamber of Commerce, Hamid Hosseini, said the Iraqi officials agreed to deposit Iran’s electricity and gas funds into a banking account belonging to the National Iranian Gas Company (NIGC) and Iran’s Power Generation, Transmission and Distribution Management Company, or TAVANIR.

The assets, he said, are kept in a bank under strict US supervision and are only allowed to be used for importing goods and commodities that are not subject to the sanctions, he said.

During a recent visit of Iraqi Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein to the US, Iraq was given permission to release $500 million worth of Iranian assets blocked in the Iraqi banks.

Iraq has historically been dependent on Iran for around 40 percent of its power needs.

The two neighbors have continuous transactions with each other, which are carried out partly by the private sectors and the governments of the two states.

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