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Jordan, Iraq review economic relations, explore further cooperation

By JT - Dec 20,2018 - Last updated at Dec 20,2018

Representatives from Jordan and Iraq meet to review economic ties and potential areas of mutual benefit on Wednesday (Petra photo)

AMMAN — Jordan and Iraq on Wednesday stressed their keenness to enhance economic relations, and discussed the import of Iraqi oil to Jordan at special prices during a meeting at the Prime Ministry.

Prime Minister Omar Razzaz and the Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs and Minister of Finance and Planning Fuad Hussein discussed means to enhance bilateral cooperation between the two countries. 

During the meeting, the premier stressed the deep-rooted ties between the two nations, underscoring the importance of enhancing them on all levels to serve both countries' best interests. 

Razzaz expressed his hope to work with the new Iraqi government and Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi, to go through all issues that concern the two neighbours, as well as means of cooperation, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported.

Razzaz and Fuad discussed cooperation in a number of fields, especially a crude oil pipeline project between the two countries and activating bilateral agreements to achieve full integration between Jordan and Iraq.

During extensive talks, involving senior officials from Jordan and Iraq, both sides highlighted the need to have cooperative ties rather than competitive ones to best serve their interests, according to Petra.

The project to transport Iraqi crude oil through the oil pipeline between Basra and Aqaba was the highlight of the meeting, as Baghdad aspires to find new ways of exporting oil.

Talks also touched on the possibility for Jordan importing Iraqi oil at preferential prices, and installing power grids as part of reconstruction efforts in Iraq.

In the transport field, the two sides agreed to increase focus on the Karameh-Tureibil Border Crossing and improve air and maritime transport by providing facilities for importers in the Iraqi private sector.

They also discussed the possibility of exempting Jordanian exports to Iraq from customs fees, establishing joint industrial zones, launching integrated industries and starting joint investment projects between both countries’ private sectors to encourage Iraqi investments in the Kingdom.

Discussions covered cooperation in the energy and electricity sectors, as Jordan can export more than 1,000 gigawatts of electricity to the western areas of Iraq, according to Petra. 

Deputy Prime Minister Rajai Muasher called for the joint Jordanian-Iraqi committee to review all the economic issues between the two countries and find proper solutions in a fixed time frame. 

For his part, Hussein said that Iraq and Jordan see eye to eye on several issues, such as continuing the war against terrorism and extreme ideologies, noting that enhancing economic and political ties are a top priority for the new Iraqi government. 

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