Analysis: Iraq lacks energy strategy

A new deal to build a gas import pipeline from Iran reveals Iraq's failure to build a comprehensive energy strategy, writes former oil minister Issam Chalabi.
Iraq is clearing the seabed of debris, ordnance and excess mud before laying two new export pipelines. (ALI ABU IRAQ/Iraq Oil Report)

The Iraqi cabinet recently approved a $365 million pipeline to import gas from Iran, and the Electricity Ministry quickly signed the contract, even though several important questions remain unanswered. Is the deal economical, advantageous to Iraq, or even necessary in the first place? Does it violate U.S. sanctions against Iran?

Neither the Cabinet nor the Electricity Ministry has fully addressed such issues. Their hasty dealings suggest that Iraq lacks a coherent energy strategy.

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