Iraq's Ministry of Electricity has just promised that shortages will be eliminated by the end of the year. Readers of Iraq Business News will remember a previous commitment, made in strident terms just four months ago, to end blackouts by the end of October.
Ministry spokesperson Musaib Mudaris claims the country now produces around 11,000 megawatts, still short of the country’s total needs, estimated at 13,000 megawatts. From a first glance at these figures, one might expect that most residents and businesses have power most of the time, but the reality on the ground is different.
Al-Monitor's Ali Abdel Sadah, for example, reports that Baghdad residents on average enjoy six hours of electricity a day, while some areas of the city remain completely without electricity. So in addition to some scepticism about the numbers, there appears to be a major problem of distribution.
The good news is that funds are being directed to solving these problems, with the Ministry's budget for this year being increased to $14 billion. And while many contracts have already been issued, this should still create more opportunities for engineering businesses.
Meanwhile, we will continue to watch the real availability of electricity throughout the country, and remind the Ministry of its commitments.
If you are in Iraq, please tell us your experience of electricity supply in the comment section below.