Iraq has launched a project to build schools in the central Najaf Governorate to be funded by China under a 2019 landmark agreement that includes supply of Iraqi crude oil, the local press reported on Friday. 

Iraqi Education Minister Ali Al-Dulaimi on Thursday laid the foundation stone for the project in Najaf, one of several areas in Iraq to benefit from the 1,000-school scheme that will be financed through the oil-for-project agreement between the two countries. 

“This project for the construction of several schools in Najaf will be carried out as part of the government’s agreement with China,” cabinet spokesman Haidar Majeed said, quoted by Aliqtisad News and other Iraqi publications. 

Iraq and China signed the oil-for-project deal in Sept 2019, under which Chinese companies will undertake projects in the OPEC member in exchange for oil supplies. 

(Writing by Nadim Kawach; Editing by Anoop Menon)