Iran has escalated its stance on Iraq’s debts, demanding that it pay for what Baghdad has purchased of Iranian gas within one month, which Iraqi officials considered difficult to verify, and portends a crisis in the short term.
The Director General of the Iranian Gas Company, Majid Jekini, said that Iraq owes Tehran an amount of 1.6 billion dollars, in return for the natural gas it imported from Iran.
In a statement today, Tuesday, May 17, Gekeni said that, according to the agreement signed between Tehran and Baghdad, Iraq must pay $1.6 billion for the Iranian gas it obtained, before importing any other quantities from Iran, to which sources responded that the payment It will be difficult before the end of this year.
Iraqi sources said, in exclusive statements to “Energy”, that Baghdad will not be able to pay the amount of 1.6 billion US dollars for Iranian gas, before the end of the current year 2022, explaining that in the best circumstances, 50% of this amount can be paid within a month or two. .
The sources indicated that the recent visit of the Iraqi delegation to Tehran was very positive, but the Iraqi Ministry of Electricity was surprised by the statements of the Director General of the National Iranian Gas Company, announced today.
The sources pointed out that there are almost non-stop contacts between the two countries, especially with Baghdad’s constant keenness to maintain bilateral relations with its closest neighbor, Iran, especially with regard to the supply of Iranian gas.
It is noteworthy that “Energy” requested a comment from the official spokesman for the Iraqi Ministry of Electricity, Ahmed Musa, but he did not respond.
Iranian gas supplies
Despite his demand for urgent payment, the General Director of the Iranian Gas Company, Majid Jakini, said that his country is committed to supplying gas to Iraq, according to the quantities specified in the bilateral agreement between the two countries.
He pointed out that due to Iraq’s current conditions and its need to import more Iranian gas, the two countries agreed to continue increasing the volume of Iranian gas exports to Baghdad, provided that the due debt would be paid within one month.
The Acting Iraqi Minister of Electricity, Adel Karim, had visited Tehran at the beginning of this month, to discuss continuing to pump gas at the rates agreed upon with the debt scheduling.
About a week later, a spokesman for the Iraqi Ministry of Electricity, Ahmed Musa, announced a breakthrough in the Iranian gas negotiations, which will raise the quantities from 8 to 30 million cubic meters per day, and agree to pay the dues within 3 years.
Baghdad is seeking to solve the electricity crisis, which has been increasing recently, and is expected to reach its peak next summer, in addition to searching for sources to secure the fuel required to operate power plants, most of which are powered by gas coming from Iran.
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