February 25, 2022
According to reports, Iran’s gas exports to Iraq have dropped significantly as Iraq is seeking to import gas from other countries.
With the cold season arriving, Iran has faced a shortage of gas and in some cases, the domestic gas consumed by Iranian citizens has been cut off.
The shortage of gas production in Iran has cast its shadow on its export to other countries.
In recent years, Iraq has been one of the main importers of gas from the Iranian regime, but this country has been affected by the consequences of gas shortages in Iran. In the cold seasons of the year, gas exports to Iraq from Iran fell to their lowest level.
In the absence of a guarantee to export the amount of gas agreed by the Iranian regime to Iraq, the country has recently sought to replace the Iran regime’s gas by reaching out to other countries to import guaranteed gas from them.
Recently, Ahmad Musa, a spokesperson for the Iraqi Ministry of Electricity, announced that electricity production at many of the country’s power plants had been halted due to a sharp drop in gas exports from Iran.
Musa added that the Iranian regime has reduced gas exports to Iraq from 50 million cubic meters per day to 8.5 million cubic meters.
In August 2021, Iraqi officials announced that they had begun diplomatic consultations to resolve the gas import problem.
In this regard, Hamid Reza Salehi, a member of the Iran regime’s Chamber of Commerce, recently announced that the Iranian regime has minimal sales of electricity to Iraq and no money is received, which has diverted the country’s large market against the favor of the Iranian regime to countries such as Saudi Arabia and Egypt.
Salehi lamented that the regime is losing Baghdad’s $20 to $30 billion markets, which is a great loss for the regime because of its critical economic situation.
In addition, the state-run daily Mardomsalari reported on February 22, 2022, a ‘countdown to the suspension of the Iranian government’s gas exports to Baghdad’ and announced that Iraq and Qatar were discussing the possibility of exporting Qatari gas to that country.
With these negotiations, which seem to have reached their final stage and will be implemented soon, Iraq will import gas from Qatar and reduce imports from the Iranian regime.
Earlier, Iraqi officials signed a memorandum of understanding with Saudi officials to import electricity from Saudi Arabia.
While Iran ranks second in the world in terms of gas reserves, the mismanagement and inadequacy of the regime in recent years has prevented the country from making optimal use of its vast gas fields.
For example, Iran shares a gas field with Qatar. Qatar alone is extracting gas from this field due to the relevant investment, while the resulting gas is burned on the Iranian side and goes into the air.
Compounding the problem is the fact that because of the US sanctions against Tehran, Baghdad is allowed to import energy but is not allowed to pay Tehran in cash.
The restrictions have been in place since Washington pulled out of the JCPOA in 2018 and re-imposed sanctions on Tehran. The White House has since required Iraq to pay for its energy imports from Iran in form of goods, not in cash.
And this is not the first time that the Iranian people are suffering economically because of the regime’s actions.
The same thing happened with electricity two years ago. At that time, the regime could not manage electricity and had problems in exporting electricity to Iraq, which also replaced the electricity it needed through Saudi Arabia. Therefore, the regime lost another important source of income.
In the meantime, Qatar is reaping huge benefits from this replacement, because it exports gas from the South Pars joint field. This is a blow to Iran’s national wealth because the regime is not able to extract gas from this field.