Iraq commissions 610-megawatt power plant

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By Tamara Abdulrazzaq

Azzaman, October 25, 2014

Iraq has commissioned a new unit of a giant power plant in the southern Province of Wasit, the spokesperson for the Ministry of Electricity, Musaib al-Mudaris, said.

The unit that has gone on operation experimentally has a capacity of 610 megawatts, Mudaris said, adding that it will soon be linked to the national grid.

It is the fifth unit to be commissioned in Wasit. The first four units are currently churning out 330 megawatts each.

The plant in Wasit is the largest in Iraq and on completion it will have a total capacity of 2540 megawatts.

“Preparations are underway to have the unit connected to the national grid to mark the first time a generating unit with such a capacity entering service,” Mudaris said. “The plant in Wasit will alleviate power shortages and ease suffering as a result of outages.”

Despite billions of dollars in investments, power shortages hit major cities in Iraq. The country currently imports electricity from Iran to meet these shortages.

The Electricity Ministry says its power plants have the ability to meet the country’s domestic needs, blaming violence and lack of fuel for outages.

Iraq has struck deals with Iran for the import of fuel and natural gas to operate its power plants.