By Omar Sattar for Al Monitor. Any opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News

Iraq fears bevy of levees will mean parched years ahead

Although water levels in the Tigris and Euphrates rivers have been rising as torrential rains fill some of the largest dams in Iraq, the threat of drought persists.

Turkey is now taking the necessary steps to fill its controversial Ilisu Dam, while Iran continues to cut off tributaries of the rivers flowing into Iraq.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said at a March 7 rally that the country will begin filling the reservoir of the dam on the Tigris River in June, despite warnings from the Iraqi government that the process will dry out large areas of the country.

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By John Lee.

Iraq’s Ministry of Oil has announced interim oil exports for March of 104,686,779 barrels, giving an average for the month of 3.377 million barrels per day (bpd), down from the 3.621 bpd exported in February.

These exports from the oilfields in central and southern Iraq amounted to 100,899,853 barrels, while exports from Kirkuk amounted to 3,063,972 barrels, and from Qayara 722,954 barrels.

Revenues for the month were $6.679 billion at an average price of $63.804 per barrel.

February export figures can be found here.

(Source: Ministry of Oil)

By John Lee.

Iraq’s Ministry of Oil has announced final oil exports for February of 101,387,559 barrels, giving an average for the month of 3.621 million barrels per day (bpd), down from the 3.649 bpd exported in January.

These exports from the oilfields in central and southern Iraq amounted to 99,120,006 barrels, while exports from Kirkuk amounted to 1,753,373 barrels, and from Qayara 514,180 barrels.

Revenues for the month were $6.179 billion at an average price of $60.943 per barrel.

January export figures can be found here.

(Source: Ministry of Oil)

By John Lee.

A Turkish airline will start new services from Diyarbakir and Gaziantep to Erbil from 21st March.

AnadoluJet, a subsidiary of Turkish Airlines, plans to offer three flights per week to each location.

(Source: AnadoluJet)

By John Lee.

Oil Minister Thamer Al-Ghadhban met on Tuesday with Nhat Ozdemir, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Turkish conglomerate Limak.

The minister said he was keen to develop the energy sector through cooperation with international companies, noting the presence of promising opportunities in Iraq.

Mr Ozdemir said his company wants to cooperate with the Ministry of Oil in the development of the energy sector in the country.

(Source: Ministry of Oil)

By John Lee.

Iraq’s Ministry of Oil has announced interim oil exports for February of 101,387,615 barrels, giving an average for the month of 3.621 million barrels per day (bpd), down from the 3.649 bpd exported in January.

These exports from the oilfields in central and southern Iraq amounted to 99,120,006 barrels, while exports from Kirkuk amounted to 1,753,373 barrels, and from Qayara 514,236 barrels.

Revenues for the month were $6.168 billion at an average price of $60.834 per barrel.

January export figures can be found here.

(Source: Ministry of Oil)

By John Lee.

Turkey will reportedly provide around $5 billion in loans for the reconstruction of Iraq.

According to Anadolu Agency, Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu (pictured) told a meeting in Istanbul on Sunday:

“We will provide $5 billion credit … We have already begun coordination of these works for the reconstruction of Iraq,”

(Source: Anadolu Agency)

By John Lee.

Iraq’s Ministry of Oil has announced interim oil exports for January of 113,111,437 barrels, giving an average for the month of 3.649 million barrels per day (bpd), down from the 3.726 bpd exported in December.

These exports from the oilfields in central and southern Iraq amounted to 110,245,281 barrels, while exports from Kirkuk amounted to 2,315,381 barrels, and from Qayara 550,775 barrels.

Revenues for the month were $6.353 billion at an average price of $56.164 per barrel.

December export figures can be found here.

(Source: Ministry of Oil)

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)