Iran government urged not to neglect Iraq’s energy market

Iranian private sector has warned the government authorities about neglecting the Iraqi energy market.

8 September 2021
ID : 33055
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Iranian private sector has warned the government authorities about neglecting the Iraqi energy market.  

Energy Commission of Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mine, and Agriculture (ICCIMA) convened on Tuesday examining the situation of the Iranian refineries.   

The commission members believed that Iran has the capacity to increase its share from the Iraqi market.

They referred to a 27-billion-euro contract recently signed between France’s Total and Iraq, saying that France is a serious rival for Iran in the Iraqi market.  

Hamidreza Salehi, the head of ICCIMA Energy Commission, said, “today Iran's position in Iraq has unfortunately been weakened.”

“Despite the huge reserves of gas and energy, we have not been able to perform successfully in Iraq,” Salehi argued.

Referring to the presence of France and Turkey in the Iraqi energy market, he expressed hope that the Iranian authorities will change their look to relations with neighboring Iraq and so as to have a stronger presence in the country’s market.

In an interview with Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines, and Agriculture (ICCIMA) news website on Monday, Sha’ban Foroutan, a board member of Iran-Iraq Joint Chamber of Commerce, said that due to the lack of trade views in the field of exports, Iran is lagging behind its trade rivals in the Iraqi market, including Saudi Arabia and Turkey.

Foroutan said that increased tariffs have reduced Iran’s competitiveness in the Iraqi market while he believed that due to cultural and religious proximities, the Iraqi people prefer to trade with Iran more than Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Jordan.

He proposed that a working group has to be set up between Iran and Iraq led by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the private sector so as to be able to raise and follow up on problems directly.

“The Iranian businesspersons have to be looking for new products and new markets in Iraq as the conditions are constantly changing,” he said, noting that Iran used to be the leading exporter of cement to Iraq in the not so distant past but due to constructing cement factories in Iraq, the country no more needs Iranian cement.

Iraq was the second-biggest export destination for Iranian products during the first four years of the Iranian fiscal year (March 21-July 22) importing some $2.8 billion worth of goods from Iran during the mentioned period.

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