RWE announced that it has signed Cooperation Agreements with the Kurdistan Regional Government in Iraq with the aim of helping it to develop and design its domestic and export gas transportation infrastructure – creating a route to market for Kurdistan’s major gas reserves. The cooperation also foresees the negotiation of gas supply agreements to enable gas from the region to be transported to Turkey and Europe via the Nabucco pipeline. Export revenues would be shared and available to the whole of Iraq and provide much needed support in the reconstruction of the region and the country.
Speaking after meeting with Natural Resources Minister Ashti Hawrami, Stefan Judisch, CEO of RWE Supply & Trading GmbH, said: “I am delighted to have been able to discuss with the Minister of Natural Resources Mr Hawrami the ways in which we can take forward rapidly the various actions set out in the agreement which we have signed. This is to the mutual benefit of the region and RWE.”
The cooperation agreement covers a number of areas in which RWE can help build up human and natural resources in the region. These include training of young engineers and executives in the Kurdistan Region in the management of gas distribution and resources; advice on the design of a domestic gas distribution network to allow for businesses and households for the first time in the region to have access to piped, rather than bottled gas; the design of a midstream gas transport network to allow gas both to be transported within the region and allow for export to neighbouring countries.
Natural Resources Minister Ashti Hawrami welcomed the agreements: “The Kurdistan Region of Iraq has very considerable gas reserves. This cooperation agreement will help us improve the lives of ordinary people in the region and in the whole of Iraq by providing the means of gaining access to that gas in their homes and businesses. It also lays the foundation for measures which will allow all Iraqis to benefit from the revenue from exporting gas. This will fund the reconstruction of the whole country after the disruption and neglect of the past.”
“The location of gas reserves in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq makes them ideally placed to gain access to the secure and profitable European gas market. Transporting this gas – up to 20 bcm a year – through the Nabucco pipeline is a priority for us, and will also serve to cement our already good relations with Europe and Turkey”.
Stefan Judisch added: “We hope to very soon reach agreement on supplies of gas from the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. This will underpin strong progress we are making elsewhere on preparing construction of the Nabucco pipeline in the near future.” He went on to say: “I have been heartened by the genuine welcome my colleagues and I have received in Erbil, and struck by the real sense of security and strong entrepreneurial spirit in its business community. This is a part of the world in which companies like ours can and will do business”.