Iran Needs Its Revenues From Gas Export to Iraq
IRAN NEWS ECONOMIC DESK
TEHRAN – Spokesman of the Petroleum Products Exporters Union Seyed Hamid Hosseini says Iraq realize that Iran needs gas export revenues to Iraq, as the country is in critical condition and despite having money in the Iraqi bank accounts, it faces problem for paying $200m for the purchase of medicines.
Speaking to ILNA and on the possibility of losing the Iraq market due to decreasing gas to this country because of not paying its dues, Hosseini said that according to the agreement, Iran should deliver 50 million cubic meters of daily gas to Iraq, and it has fulfilled its obligation to date but when according to this agreement no money is paid, Iran can stop exporting.
He said by stopping export of gas to Iraq or reducing it, Iran will not lose the Iraq gas market because no country can export gas to this country, and regarding electricity, Iraq by getting gas from Iran produces 6500 megawatts of electricity and Iran itself provides Iraq wit exports 1200 megawatts of electricity while Iraq needs 20,000 megawatts of electricity. He noted irregardless of Iran, if any country like Turkey, Kuwait or Saudi Arabia connects to the power network of Iraq, it will not meet the needs of this country. He noted that the capital of Iraq, Baghdad, is connected to the electricity network for just 4 to 5 hours during the day and in the remaining ours of the day, generators provide power for Baghdad citizens, so Iran is not concerned about any rival.
Hosseini said that the total electricity production of Iraq is around 15,000 megawatts and if the country wants to focus on industry and develop it, its needs will rise, therefore, the country will be the purchaser of Iran gas and electricity for years.
He reiterated in case the money is not paid, it is natural to cut the export and it is an ordinary rule in trade, adding that when Iran, in the winter, needs gas and it does not get export revenues, it is natural to take such an action.
Hosseini said that to date, Iran has tolerated it and been ready to get his money in different forms but it has been in vain and now it has been forced to reduce or cut the gas export.
He added that Iraq should understand that Iran needs its money and despite having money in the bank account it cannot spend $200m for the purchase of medicines and when its money is blocked in Iraq, it will be to the benefit of neither Iraq nor Iran.
Hosseini said that now it seems Iraq has started some moves for paying its dues, expressing hope that during Iranian energy minister’s visit to Baghdad this problem would be resolved.
He noted that the main reason behind this problem is the U.S. sanctions and also since Iraq is currently under Chapter VI of the UN Charter is not in charge of its financial resources and all revenues of this country are first deposited in another account and then it is transferred to the account of the government. He noted that Iraq is concerned about the U.S. sanctions and halt in its forex revenues and for this reason it precautions.