By John Lee.

Under the guidance of the Iraqi Prime Minister, H.E. Dr. Adel Abdul Mahdi, the patronage of the Iraqi Minister of Electricity, H.E. Dr. Luay al-Khatteeb and in continuation of their dedicated efforts to strengthen Iraq’s power sector, Mass Energy Group Holding (MGH) and GE Power signed a new agreement that will help establish Phase 3 of the Besmaya [Bismaya] Power Plant, taking the total capacity of the facility up to 4.5 gigawatts (GW).

Under the scope of the agreement, GE will supply MGH with four 9F gas turbines and four generators to equip Besmaya Phase 3. The project has already been approved by Iraq’s Council of Ministers and MGH will supply electricity from the new extension of the plant to the Iraqi Ministry of Electricity under a 20-year power purchase agreement (PPA).

The agreement was signed in the presence of H.E. Dr. Luay Al-Khatteeb and John Rice, Chairman of GE Gas Power by Ahmad Ismail, Chairman of MGH and Joseph Anis, President and CEO of GE’s Gas Power Systems and Power Services businesses in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia.

H.E. Dr. Luay Al-Khatteeb said:

As the first independent power project in Central Iraq, Besmaya set benchmarks in public-private sector partnerships and contributions to Iraq’s electricity network.

“It has not only shown that Iraq can be an attractive destination for private sector investments in the energy sector but more importantly, it has played a critical role in helping the government to increase supplies of reliable, efficient, and affordable power to meet the needs of our citizens. We look forward to continuing our collaboration with MGH and GE through the further expansion of Besmaya Power Plant.”

Besmaya Phase 3 is the largest new power plant by output to be added to Iraq’s national grid since 2014. The project is anticipated to bring another 1.5 GW of power online by 2021, with the first 500 megawatts (MW) scheduled to be added to the grid as early as next year. Up to 1,200 people are expected to be employed in the construction of Besmaya Phase 3.

Ahmad Ismail said:

At Mass Energy Group Holding, our mission is to make investments in the interests of the public by being an active contributor to the construction and development of Iraq’s power sector. In GE, we have found a reliable partner that is not only committed to the same values but also able to provide industry-leading technology, as well as world-class execution and service expertise on the ground in Iraq.

“We are excited to start working on the next phase of Besmaya today and remain committed to partnering with the government and people of Iraq to keep addressing the country’s power generation needs in the future as well.

The agreement builds on a proven track record of successful power generation projects executed in collaboration between MGH and GE in Iraq. Besmaya is already the largest power plant in Iraq in terms of output and among the largest across the Middle East and North Africa.

Phase 1 of Besmaya Power Plant is capable of generating up to 1.5 GW of power, while Phase 2 can already produce up to 1 GW and is expected to add up to another 500 MW as it starts combined cycle operations during the end of 2019 / early 2020. GE has provided eight 9F gas turbines and 4 steam turbines for the first two phases of Besmaya. Moreover, MGH and GE have earlier brought up to 4 GW of power online in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq through the Erbil, Duhuk, and Sulaymania projects.

Joseph Anis said:

On behalf of GE, I would like to thank MGH and the Ministry of Electricity for their continued trust in us. GE has been honored to collaborate with various organizations to support the development of Iraq’s electricity sector for over 50 years.

“From being among the first to help rebuild power infrastructure in conflict-affected areas such as Diyala and Mosul, to providing equipment and services for Iraq’s first independent power plant, we have not just promised but continuously delivered on our commitment to help power progress for the people of Iraq.

(Source: GE)

By John Lee.

Under the guidance of the Iraqi Prime Minister, H.E. Dr. Adel Abdul Mahdi, the patronage of the Iraqi Minister of Electricity, H.E. Dr. Luay al-Khatteeb and in continuation of their dedicated efforts to strengthen Iraq’s power sector, Mass Energy Group Holding (MGH) and GE Power signed a new agreement that will help establish Phase 3 of the Besmaya [Bismaya] Power Plant, taking the total capacity of the facility up to 4.5 gigawatts (GW).

Under the scope of the agreement, GE will supply MGH with four 9F gas turbines and four generators to equip Besmaya Phase 3. The project has already been approved by Iraq’s Council of Ministers and MGH will supply electricity from the new extension of the plant to the Iraqi Ministry of Electricity under a 20-year power purchase agreement (PPA).

The agreement was signed in the presence of H.E. Dr. Luay Al-Khatteeb and John Rice, Chairman of GE Gas Power by Ahmad Ismail, Chairman of MGH and Joseph Anis, President and CEO of GE’s Gas Power Systems and Power Services businesses in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia.

H.E. Dr. Luay Al-Khatteeb said:

As the first independent power project in Central Iraq, Besmaya set benchmarks in public-private sector partnerships and contributions to Iraq’s electricity network.

“It has not only shown that Iraq can be an attractive destination for private sector investments in the energy sector but more importantly, it has played a critical role in helping the government to increase supplies of reliable, efficient, and affordable power to meet the needs of our citizens. We look forward to continuing our collaboration with MGH and GE through the further expansion of Besmaya Power Plant.”

Besmaya Phase 3 is the largest new power plant by output to be added to Iraq’s national grid since 2014. The project is anticipated to bring another 1.5 GW of power online by 2021, with the first 500 megawatts (MW) scheduled to be added to the grid as early as next year. Up to 1,200 people are expected to be employed in the construction of Besmaya Phase 3.

Ahmad Ismail said:

At Mass Energy Group Holding, our mission is to make investments in the interests of the public by being an active contributor to the construction and development of Iraq’s power sector. In GE, we have found a reliable partner that is not only committed to the same values but also able to provide industry-leading technology, as well as world-class execution and service expertise on the ground in Iraq.

“We are excited to start working on the next phase of Besmaya today and remain committed to partnering with the government and people of Iraq to keep addressing the country’s power generation needs in the future as well.

The agreement builds on a proven track record of successful power generation projects executed in collaboration between MGH and GE in Iraq. Besmaya is already the largest power plant in Iraq in terms of output and among the largest across the Middle East and North Africa.

Phase 1 of Besmaya Power Plant is capable of generating up to 1.5 GW of power, while Phase 2 can already produce up to 1 GW and is expected to add up to another 500 MW as it starts combined cycle operations during the end of 2019 / early 2020. GE has provided eight 9F gas turbines and 4 steam turbines for the first two phases of Besmaya. Moreover, MGH and GE have earlier brought up to 4 GW of power online in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq through the Erbil, Duhuk, and Sulaymania projects.

Joseph Anis said:

On behalf of GE, I would like to thank MGH and the Ministry of Electricity for their continued trust in us. GE has been honored to collaborate with various organizations to support the development of Iraq’s electricity sector for over 50 years.

“From being among the first to help rebuild power infrastructure in conflict-affected areas such as Diyala and Mosul, to providing equipment and services for Iraq’s first independent power plant, we have not just promised but continuously delivered on our commitment to help power progress for the people of Iraq.

(Source: GE)

Seedstars World, the largest seed-stage startup competition for emerging markets and fast-growing startup scenes, hosted its Iraq round this Friday, at The Station, where 8 selected startups were invited to present their companies in front of the local jury panel.

The local winners were chosen for their innovative sustainable solutions on their different fields. The 1st winner of the competition was IOT Kids,  an online platform teaching kids how to code using scratch and also direct courses in certain private schools. IOT Kids will go on to represent Iraq at Seedstars Regional Summit.

In second place went to Tabib Baghdad, an online booking platform that connects doctors with patients.

Third place was taken by Ur Transport, a revolutionary airboat eco friendly design which will serve as the major future infrastructure for rivers.

After a careful screening and training on Day 1, the Seedstars team shortlisted 8 of the best seed-stage startups in Iraq who pitched on August 2 for the opportunity to compete at the Seedstars Summit, that annually takes place in Switzerland. The list of the Jury members will included Ali Hili, Youth and Entrepreneurship at Zain Iraq, Bassem Abdel Hadi Hassan, Spokesperson for the Central Bank of Iraq (CBI), Noor Alhandal, Chairman at Ashur International Bank, Khaled Alabadi, Project Manager at GE, Dhafer Hasan, Programme Analyst at UNDP and Anas Al-Chalabi, Business Development Manager at Social n’ Tech

A lot of partners have supported Seedstars at making this event happen. The Main Partners of the Event are Central Bank of Iraq continue to position themselves as great believers in the impact of entrepreneurship. The Local Partners of the event are The Station and Social N’ Tech . Further support is provided by Careem, one of the regions most successful startups, as Entrepreneurship Partners.

In order to provide local entrepreneurs with this opportunity and aiming to deliver the best possible event, Seedstars closely worked with Mohammad Salah, who is representing the initiative throughout the year. “As the Seedstars ambassadors in Baghdad, we’re more than proud to have hosted the competition in Iraq; This event was a massive networking and funding opportunity to the finalists. Bringing Seedstars to Iraq will open the door for other global incubators, accelerators and competitions by encouraging them to expand to Iraq. we are here to make a difference, to create opportunities and give exposure to the ecosystem” explains Mohamad Salah , Managing Director at Social N Tech.

Mira Charkawi, Community Events Manager at Seedstars also said:

“At Seedstars, we believe talent and good ideas are everywhere. We see ourselves as a platform connecting investors to the next generation of startup entrepreneurs in places where normally people wouldn’t think startup ecosystem have such traction, growth and buzz. We are very excited to have been in Baghdad, highlighting such a bustling entrepreneurship ecosystem and we are here to witness the reality”.

Continuing on its world MENA tour, Seedstars World’s next stop is in Cairo taking place at Seedstars Seedspace on the 21&22 of August. Seedstars World is looking for smart startups that solve regional issues and/or develop profitable products for the global market. Startups are invited to apply on the above mentioned websites.

(Source: Seedstars)

By John Lee.

The Iraq Britain Business Council (IBBC) has announced that it has established a Health Sector Table.

This Table will be chaired by Professor David Kerr, Rhodes Professor of Clinical Pharmacology and Cancer Therapeutics, and Head of Department of Clinical Pharmacology at Oxford University.

It is being supported by the Iraqi Minister of Health and the Environment, Dr Ala Alwan, who attended its first meeting.

The Table’s first meeting was held at IBBC’s offices on the morning of Friday 28th June. Its purpose is to allow relevant member organisations to become involved in the further development of the Iraqi health sector.

Healthcare is a priority for IBBC, and the Minister will personally be liaising with this Table. Also present at this meeting were representatives of Almanseer Insurance, Serco, Protechnique, GE Healthcare, Perkins+Will UK, PwC, Management Partners, and The Amar Foundation.

For more information on the Iraq Britain Business Council, visit https://www.iraqbritainbusiness.org/

(Source: IBBC)

By John Lee.

General Electric (GE) is reportedly expected to win a large share of the multibillion-dollar contracts to rebuild Iraq’s electricity system.

According to a report from Reuters, “under U.S. prodding, Iraq is asking both Siemens and GE to bid on contracts and expects to make awards to each of the companies“.

Following a hotly-contested competition last year, it was agreed that Siemens and GE would share the work to upgrade they system, with GE supplying 14 gigawatts (GW), and Siemens 11 GW.

The Financial Times subsequently reported that the deals were not certain to be approved.

(Source: Reuters)

GE Power (NYSE: GE) has installed and commissioned a new advanced 9E gas turbine at the Iraqi Ministry of Electricity’s (MoE) Al Qudus Power Plant.

The site was previously capable of generating up to 1,125 megawatts (MW) of power. With the addition of the new turbine, it can generate an additional 125 MW, which will contribute to meeting the higher demand for power during the summer months. GE is also providing maintenance services, parts and rehabilitation works at the site, helping to enhance the reliability of operations at the plant and maintain a stable supply of electricity over the course of the year.

Musaab al-Mudarris, Director of the Media Department of the Iraqi Ministry of Electricity said:

Delivering additional power for the hot summer months is a priority for the Ministry of Electricity. One of the quickest and most cost-effective means of adding efficient, reliable power to the national grid is to enhance the productivity of existing power generation facilities.

“GE can help us meet this objective with its industry-leading solutions, large installed base of power generation equipment across Iraq and local team of experts. The successful delivery, installation and commissioning of a new gas turbine at Al Qudus Power Plant just 5 months after the contract was awarded is a testament to the Ministry and GE’s joint commitment to powering Iraq.”

GE’s 9E technology is capable of running on more than 50 different kinds of fuel. This provides the MOE with the flexibility to operate the unit on the most economical source available and to keep generating power using liquid fuels when gas is unavailable.

Joseph Anis, President and CEO of GE’s Gas Power Systems and Power Services businesses in the Middle East and South Asia, said:

“GE is committed to delivering reliable, efficient and affordable power to help the Iraqi people strengthen their economy, re-build conflict-affected areas and support progress for present and future generations. Our teams were among the first to enter Mosul after its liberation, helping to rehabilitate the Al Qayara power plant; we are supporting the development of the country’s largest power plant in Baghdad province; and we have facilitated the Ministry of Finance to unlock over $2 billion of funding for the power sector.

“We have a strong, successful track record of delivering results under the toughest of conditions across Iraq and remain committed to building upon this legacy.”

GE employs up to 300 people in Iraq, more than 90 percent of whom are Iraqi nationals, and has supported the development of Iraq’s energy sector for more than 50 years. From Zakho to Basra, GE-built solutions are helping to enable growth, health, connection and safety in communities across Iraq.

Today, GE-built technologies contribute up to 55 percent of Iraq’s current electricity production, GE and its partners power more than 90 percent of the aircrafts operated by Iraqi Airways and nearly 4,000 GE Healthcare products are deployed in hospitals and clinics across Iraq.

(Source: GE)

UK International Trade Secretary Dr Liam Fox MP has visited Baghdad for a three-day visit (Sunday, 14 April to Tuesday, 16 April 2019) where he met with the Iraqi Prime Minister and announced that UK Export Finance (UKEF) will make an additional £1 billion of support available for British firms operating in Iraq, providing jobs and promoting stability in the region.

In the first visit to Iraq by a cabinet minister for more than a year, Dr Fox will be meeting with senior Iraqis including the Prime Minister and President to discuss the bilateral trading relationship.

Alongside the Iraqi Prime Minister Adil Abdul Mehdi, the Trade Secretary announced that UK Export Finance is making an additional £1 billion available to support UK exports to Iraq, bringing its total support for the country to £2 billion.

The measure is designed to promote Iraq’s economic development and nation-building, ensuring that UKEF can continue to help the Government of Iraq deliver critical infrastructure.

To date, UKEF has deployed its existing capacity for Iraq, providing around £1 billion in support for projects including:

  • A US$35 million (£26 million) loan for the scoping phase of a water and wastewater treatment project in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq provided by UK company Biwater
  • US$1.02 billion (£770 million) to support Enka UK and GE to build 2 new gas-fired power stations in the Basra region and UK-based GE Grid Solutions to build and refurbish 14 electricity sub-stations across Iraq
  • support for a €30.2 million (£26 million) Siemens UK contract to refurbish the 320-megawatt Al Mussaib power station in southern Iraq
  • a loan to support a US$220 million (£169 million) contract being undertaken by a UK subsidiary of GE to refurbish gas-fired power stations

This support is available to UK companies selling to Iraq or investing in the country and will help the Government of Iraq access finance for projects that source goods and services from the UK.

The International Trade Secretary Dr Liam Fox MP said:

The atmosphere in Baghdad is one of optimism – it is a country which is having an increasingly stable period at a time of significant unrest in the wider region. The British government, working closely with the UK private sector and our Iraqi partners, have a key role to play in the country’s long-term prosperity. The £1 billion we have announced today will significantly strengthen our ability to do just that.

“Iraq’s future is bright, and my international economic department will continue to work tirelessly to ensure it maintains this stability, allowing the hard work of its talented citizens to flourish for the benefit of all.

“Trade is about more than economic self-interest, it is the means through which we deliver the mutual prosperity that underpins our collective security. That is the true prize of trade policy and promotion done right.

During the visit, the Trade Secretary will speak to young Iraqi entrepreneurs who are working to create a more vibrant private sector to support the long-term stabilisation and prosperity of Iraq. He will also meet British firms operating in-country whose investments are vital in the country’s rebuilding efforts.

Siemens UK is improving the electricity supply in Iraq using UKEF finance. Steve Scrimshaw, Country Lead, Gas and Power UK and Ireland, Siemens UK, said:

We are delighted this additional funding has been made available for ongoing regeneration in Iraq and look forward to working with UKEF and the Iraqi government on future opportunities.

“Siemens has already benefited from UKEF support for work on the refurbishment of the Al Mussaib power plant. This will be vital for the people of Iraq who will benefit from both the power and the jobs it will create. With work being delivered from our Newcastle business, it is also helping to secure jobs in the UK.

(Source: UK FCO)

GE Power has announced that it has provided an advanced 9E gas turbine to Iraq’s Al Qudus Power Plant.

The company will also service up to seven GE 9E gas turbines at the facility throughout 2019, including maintenance, supply of parts and rehabilitation.

GE is installing the new gas turbine at the site and it is expected to generate up to an additional 125 megawatts (MW) of electricity.

The service agreement will enhance the reliability of operations at the plant, helping to maintain a stable supply of up to 875 megawatts (MW) of power over the course of the coming year.

GE employs up to 300 people in Iraq, with offices in Baghdad, Basra and Erbil.

(Source: GE)

By John Lee.

The Financial Times has reported that the recently-agreed electricity deals with Siemens and General Electric (GE) are not certain to be approved.

It quotes Minister for Electricity Luay Al-Khatteeb (pictured) as saying:

“I don’t have financial allocations or the processes available at hand, it doesn’t allow me to cherry-pick the right consultancies to deal with these multibillion-dollar deals. The bureaucracy that I inherited is . . . illogical. … certainly it’s going to be quite challenging to blindly accept such proposals.”

Al-Khatteeb took his post after the non-binding deals, or “principles of co-operation” were agreed with his predecessor, Qasim Al Fahdawi.

He said he that “volunteer experts” are helping “read in between the lines of these sophisticated legal contractual documents.

Last month, Lisa Davis, CEO of the Siemens Gas and Power Operating Company, and member of the corporation’s managing board, told The National last week that “discussions are ongoing.

More here.

(Source: Financial Times)

UK Export Finance (UKEF) has announced it will support UK firms with US $1.02 billion to build two new power stations in Iraq and support the restoration of a number of electricity substations in the country.

  • US $1.02 billion in support for UK firms to build two new power stations
  • Agreement will help build and refurbish numerous electricity substations across Iraq
  • Announcement reaffirms the UK’s commitment to Iraq’s continued economic development

US $620 million financing will go to support two contracts between GE and Iraq’s Ministry of Electricity to build two power stations in Samawa and Dhi Qar, located northwest of Basra, in southern Iraq.

UKEF had already provided initial support for the project; this additional financing supports the main construction phase of the project involving further procurement from UK suppliers through GE sub-contractor ENKA UK.

UKEF will also provide US $400 million to support a project by GE’s Grid Solutions, business to develop 14 sub-stations across Iraq. GE will build new substations on a turnkey basis and supply equipment such as transformers and other parts to rehabilitate existing substations, helping to bring power to areas with significant power shortages from the north to the south of the country.

This announcement follows the agreement between the governments of the UK and Iraq signed in March 2017, which re-affirmed the UK’s commitment to Iraq’s continued economic development.

This project will play a key role in bolstering the capacity of the Iraqi electricity grid, the two new power stations, located in the Basra region, will give citizens the access they need to critical infrastructure.

Baroness Fairhead (pictured), Minister of State for Trade and Export Promotion, said:

The scale of these contracts illustrates the demand for British expertise in the utilities sector and the level of support the government can give to British businesses looking to make the most of similar opportunities across the globe.

“The UK Government continues to be committed to Iraq’s economic development and I am delighted that UK Export Finance is supporting projects that will have such a direct impact on improving the country’s critical infrastructure and the lives of the Iraqi people.

Guto Davies, GE Energy Financial Services’ Global Capital Advisory Managing Director, said:

“The announcement of these new facilities further strengthens GE’s collaborations in Iraq to support the country’s power infrastructure and meet the growing need for electricity. GE recognises the importance of UKEF in supporting critical infrastructure projects in Iraq and the UK supply-chain. We are delighted they continue to fund major projects in the country’s power energy sector.”

Yavuz Akturk, Director at ENKA UK, said:

Power shortages continue to halt Iraq’s reconstruction and addressing this scarcity is crucial to the country’s future. As ENKA, we have taken a significant role in rebuilding the country’s infrastructure, and with these projects we will help the people in the country which are in urgent need for electricity.

“It would not be possible without the continuous support of the UK Government and the highly dedicated UKEF team; and we as ENKA, are grateful for the high-level support for these projects which will also provide great opportunities for the UK exporters.”

(Source: UK Govt)