Central Iraqi provinces to face electricity shortages as Iran further reduces gas exports
Iraq is facing more electricity shortages as Iran further reduces its gas export to Iraq to 3 million cubic meters (mcm) a day, according to a spokesperson for Iraq’s Ministry of Electricity.
“Iran will reduce its gas exports to three mcm as a result of the Iraqi side not paying the money they owe for buying gas,” Ahmad Moussa told Iraqi state media on Sunday.
“This reduction will mainly affect Baghdad and central provinces,” Moussa added.
The spokesperson also called on the Ministry of Finance to pay the money Iraq owes to Iran, and said the Iranian Minister of Energy will visit Iraq next Tuesday to discuss the issue with Baghdad officials.
Iran had initially reduced its daily gas exports to Iraq from around 40 mcm daily to 10 mcm.
“They said the weather has gotten cold in Iran, and we need more gas ourselves,” Moussa told Rudaw earlier this month.
Iraq has long suffered from chronic outages and shortages of electricity. Rampant electricity shortages have in past years been a rallying call for protesters, most notably in the summer of 2018.
Iraq signed a two-year contract with Iran in June, renewing commitments to import Iranian gas for electricity, Iranian state media reported.
Iran previously exported 1200-1500 megawatts of electricity to Iraq on a daily basis, in addition to 38-40 million cubic meters of natural gas to feed several of Iraq’s power stations, according to Sayyid Hamid Hosseini, secretary general of Iran-Iraq Joint Chamber of Commerce. Source