“An additional waiver for Iraq indicating that the United States cannot stop trade exchange between Iran and Iraq," Naser Alkanani, Iraqi professor said to ILNA news agency in an exclusive interview.
He said that Iraq imports about 1300 MW of energy and 28 million cubic metres of pipeline gas from Iran; So Tehran has a significant contribution to meeting the Iraqi needs for energy. "We know that political relations are based on common economic interests."
Iraq economics analysis added that Iran's investment in Iraq is not high enough, and Tehran was previously offered to transfer Iranian factories to Iraq, but Baghdad has not yet received a response.
To respond to question about Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are keen on investing in Iraq, Alkanani said, "Both Saudi Arabia and the UAE are trying to have close ties with Iraqi government but Baghdad is completely opposed."
The United States has allowed Iraq to import Iranian gas for its power grid for another three months by extending a waiver to sanctions - but insists that Baghdad seek alternative sources.
Iraq has had several extensions to the waiver first granted last year after Washington reimposed sanctions on Tehran’s oil sector forbidding countries from purchasing Iranian energy.
“An additional 120-day waiver was granted to allow Iraq to continue to pay for electricity imports from Iran,” the U.S. State Department said in an emailed statement.
An Iraqi government source said the extension was given during a phone call between Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi and U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.