Iran signs agreement to export natural gas to Iraq

amiri20130721141957480Iran has signed an agreement with Iraq to deliver natural gas to its western neighbor, an Iranian deputy oil minister says.

“Based on this agreement, 25 million cubic meters (mcm) of gas will be delivered to Sadr, Baghdad and al-Mansouryah power plants through … pipeline,” Mohammad Javad Owji said in Baghdad on Sunday.

The agreement was signed in the Iraqi capital by Iran’s Oil Minister Rostam Qasemi and his Iraqi counterpart, Abdul Kareem Luaibi.

“By signing this deal, the country [Iran] will earn USD 10 million a day and USD 3.7 billion a year in revenues,” Owji said.

He added that Iran has already completed the construction of its 227-kilometer section of the pipeline to carry natural gas to Iraq.

Owji, who is also managing director of National Iranian Gas Company (NIGC), stated that the 270-kilometer Iraqi section will be completed in one or two months.

The official noted that Iran is likely to sign another agreement with Iraq in two months’ time for the export of an extra 20 mcm of natural gas a day.

The first pipeline will stretch from Assaluyeh, near the massive offshore South Pars gas field in southern Iran, and will continue into neighboring Iraq to feed Iraqi power plants running on gas.

The South Pars gas field is located in the Persian Gulf on the common border between Iran and Qatar. It is estimated that the field contains 14 trillion cubic meters of gas and 18 billion barrels of condensate.

Iran, which sits on the world’s second largest natural gas reserves after Russia, is making efforts to up its gas production by increasing foreign and domestic investments, especially in South Pars gas field.

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