0232 GMT May 23, 2022
Iranian and Iraqi banking officials have repeatedly consulted in recent months on releasing Iranian assets in the Arab country, IRNA reported.
According to Hemmati, the assets, which are mainly money owed by Iraq for electricity and gas exported by Iran, will be used to buy basic goods.
Hemmati made a visit to Iraq in October 2020 during which the two sides reached an agreement to unblock frozen Iranian assets in Iraq.
During the visit, Hemmati held talks with his Iraqi counterpart Mustafa Ghaleb, making headway in resolving the banking issues with neighboring Iraq.
Ghaleb said the Iraqi authorities are determined to resolve banking issues between the two countries.
The governor of Iraq’s Central Bank proposed that the two countries set up a joint committee to explore ways to resolve financial differences between the two countries.
“We do our utmost to continue the cooperation between the two countries. The existing problems relating to Iran’s financial and monetary demands will be settled,” he said.
Hemmati also met with Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi, after which the prime minister expressed satisfaction at the agreement and insisted that he would follow the issue on a weekly basis.
In the meeting, Hemmati called Iran-Iraq relations “very important” and said Tehran attaches great importance to the expansion of ties with Iraq.
Sharing a long border and an ancient cultural and religious heritage, Iran and Iraq have become strong economic and political allies since the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003; Iran has played a significant role in meeting the Arab country’s energy needs.
Iraq relies heavily on Iranian gas to feed several power plants across Iraq, while Iranian electricity exports account for a major part of the country’s power supply.