OPEC member Iraq has approved nearly one trillion Iraqi dinars ($700 million) for infrastructure projects in Al-Zubair city in the Southern oil hub of Basra, the official Iraqi newspaper Alsabah reported on Monday.
The funds are included in the 2021 state budget and the projects cover water, power, roads and housing, it said, quoting the city’s governor Abbas Al-Saadi.
The projects also comprise a new complex for the Oil Ministry at an estimated cost of around $28.5 million, Al-Saadi said.
“The infrastructure development plan includes two phases, the first of which have been launched…this plan will benefit more than 500 million citizens,” he said.
Al-Saadi said Phase 2 would be awarded to a Chinese company, but he did not make clear if this contract would be within a landmark oil-for-projects agreement signed by Baghdad and Beijing in Sept 2019 allowing Chinese firms to execute projects in Iraq in exchange for oil.
(Writing by Nadim Kawach; Editing by Anoop Menon)
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