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Lebanon Ponders oil From Iraq

Lebanon is seeking to add Iraq as its new supplier for fuel oil in lieu of agricultural products.

With the country in a financial crises forcing it to seek billions of dollars in aid, Lebanon hopes to attract Iraq to its list of fuel oil suppliers in exchange for agricultural products.

Its prime minister Hassan Diab recently hosted a delegation of Iraqi ministers last July 3 for talks on boosting bilateral ties between the two states.

Included in Iraq's delegation is the newly-appointed oil minister Ihsan Ismael. According to him they discussed the possibility of forging an agreement between Lebanon and Iraq where Iraq will be exporting fuel oil to Lebanon enabling the Lebanese government to obtain them without intervention from intermediaries. Iraq will also benefit from this agreement by securing a permanent market for its products.

Lebanon currently imports fuel oil from Algeria and Kuwait for Electricite du Liban (EDL), its main power provider. Algeria's Sonatrach that has been supplying fuel oil to EDL since 2006 had a falling off with Lebanon last April with Lebanon accusing them of delivering sub-standard fuels. With their contract renewed every three years, Lebanon is now preparing to accept new companies to fill in.

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