QatarEnergy recently acquired a 25% stake in the Gas Growth Integrated Project in Iraq.
Qatar and Iraq are taking on various discussions on gas supplies, the rehabilitation of oilfields, and the exchange of experiences, Baghdad’s ministry of electricity announced.
Ahmed Musa, the spokesperson for the Ministry of Electricity, stated on Saturday that the decision to export Qatari gas to Iraq has been forwarded to the Ministry of Oil based on a directive from the Iraqi Council of Ministers, reports said.
Qatar’s Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani visited Iraq in June in which he announced plans to invest $5 billion in various sectors in Iraq over the next few years.
The amir’s visit to Iraq was his first since 2021 and came months after Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia Al Sudani assumed his position.
Since June, Iraq has started benefiting from the electrical interconnection project with Gulf countries in an effort to address a shortage caused by the decrease in Iranian gas supplies.
The project aims to fulfil the country’s domestic energy needs, particularly during the summer months when energy demand is high.
Currently, Iraq produces approximately 23,000 megawatts of electricity, although it requires around 35,000 megawatts to ensure uninterrupted power supply.
Qatar and Iraq discuss energy
Iraq’s Oil Minister Hayan Abdel Ghani Al Sawad confirmed in May that Doha is in talks with Baghdad to take part in oil and gas explorations
He visited the Gulf country and attended the Qatar Economic Forum 2023 in Lusail, which he described as an opportune platform to unveil a series of energy projects that Qatar and Iraq aim to develop in the near future.
“We discussed activating a number of projects in Iraq … with a particular focus on the fifth and sixth rounds involving 19 blocks in the western region of the country,” said Al Sawad.
QatarEnergy has already taken significant steps towards strengthening its presence in Iraq’s energy sector.
The company recently acquired a 25% stake in the Gas Growth Integrated Project in Iraq (GGAT), which aims to harness the natural gas resources within the country. This collaboration involves a partnership with Basra Oil Company, which holds a 30% stake, and TotalEnergies, which holds 45% ownership.
Qatar’s interest in oil and gas exploration projects in Iraq signifies the nation’s commitment to expanding its energy portfolio and forging strategic partnerships in the region as it looks to become the number one liquified natural gas (LNG) exporter in the world.
The investment provides hope for the Iraqi government which has been dealing with internal arrest as Baghdad grapples with Western energy corporations leaving the country.
The agreement calls for building a large-scale seawater treatment facility to improve output from other fields using water injection, a huge solar power plant in the Basra area, and a natural gas gathering network to serve local power plants through the extension of the Ratawi field.
Global LNG player
Qatar is already recognised as one of the largest liquefied natural gas suppliers globally, and the country is determined to boost production from 77 million tonnes to 126 million tonnes annually by 2027, as part of its two-phase North Field expansion project.
That said, QatarEnergy made significant progress towards this goal last year, signing deals with international majors such as ExxonMobil, TotalEnergies, ConocoPhillips, ENI, and Shell for the North Field project.
Qatar also inked a 27-year LNG supply deal with the China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) last week, marking the gas rich country’s second such major deal with China.
Regionally, QatarEnergy has joined forces with TotalEnergies and Eni in a consortium to explore oil and gas in two maritime blocks off Lebanon.