Baghdad buys gas and electricity from its neighbor Iran to supply about a third of its power sector, worn down by years of conflict and poor maintenance, AFP reported.
The US blacklisted Iran’s energy industry in late 2018 but granted Baghdad a series of temporary waivers, hoping Iraq would wean itself off Iranian energy by partnering with US firms.
The lengths of the exemptions have become a key tool in US policy towards Iraq, demonstrating the level of satisfaction or frustration with Baghdad.
In May, Washington granted Iraq a four-month extension as a gesture of goodwill towards Mustafa al-Kadhimi, the Iraqi prime minister.
But when it renewed the waiver in late September, the Trump administration gave Iraq just 60 days.
This time, it went even shorter: 45 days, a top Iraqi official told AFP, expiring around a week before Trump is set to hand over the White House to President-elect Joe Biden.
“They (the Trump administration) wanted a last opportunity to have a say,” the official said.
And two Iraqi officials have said they expect a “bucket list of sanctions” against Iranian interests in Iraq ahead of the White House handover.