Speaking at the Atlantic Council energy forum in Dubai, Barzani said that the government increased investments in the natural gas sector. He said that the KRG could meet at least part of Europe's energy deficit, too, now that the issue has risen on the agenda due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the subsequent sanctions targeting Moscow.
Barzani also offered to help countries outside the region meet their energy needs and emphasized that given the sanctions imposed on Russia, the KRG could become an energy exporter of global importance.
"I am confident that Kurdistan will soon become an important source of energy for the world's growing demand," said Barzani.
"We will become a net exporter of gas to the rest of Iraq, to Turkey and Europe in the near future," he added.
The KRG remains committed to the contracts signed with oil and gas partners and is positioned to help other countries in the region, said Barzani.
The KRG’s massive untapped oil reserves, lucrative production-sharing contracts and safe environment have prompted international oil companies over recent years to commit to investing billions of dollars there.
But last month, Iraq's federal court deemed an oil and gas law regulating the oil industry in the KRG unconstitutional and demanded that the authority hand over its crude supplies.
Barzani called the move a "grave injustice."
The KRG has been developing oil and gas resources independently of the federal government, and in 2007 enacted its own law that established the directives by which the region would administer these resources.
Barzani said last month he explored the KRG’s “huge gas potential” in a meeting with Qatar’s Minister of State for Energy Affairs Saad al-Kaabi.
Teams from both governments also discussed energy investment, renewables and regional energy cooperation, Barzani said on Twitter.
Separately, on Tuesday, Barzani said that the development of oil and gas in Iraq's northern Kurdish region may not be in the interest of major regional energy producer Iran.
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