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    Iraq launches 500-MW power plant


The facility was built by General Electric.

by: Joseph Murphy

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Complimentary, Natural Gas & LNG News, Middle East, Gas to Power, Contracts and tenders, News By Country, Iraq

Iraq launches 500-MW power plant

Iraq has formally opened the 500-MW Samawa gas-fired simple-cycle power plant in the Al Muthanna governorate, expected to help ease power shortages in the southern province.

The plant, built by General Electric (GE), was inaugurated by Iraqi prime minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi. It is equipped with four 9E gas turbines, and its power is supplied via a 132-kV grid to the city of Samawa and the surrounding region.

"By setting up the Samawa power plant, GE has played a significant role in providing much-needed electricity, helping to ease some of the electricity shortages experienced in the province," the Iraqi electricity ministry said in a statement on April 19. "Looking ahead, we know that Iraq still needs to add more power capacity. To that end, we are commencing work on the second phase of the Samawa project, under which it will be converted to a combined cycle power plant and be able to generate up to 750 MW."

GE signed deals with Iraq's electricity ministry worth $1.2bn last August on improving the country's peak power supply by expanding generation and import capacity. By expanding gas-fired power output, Iraq hopes not only to overcome electricity shortages but also help address its high level of flaring. It is the second-largest flarer in the world after Russia.