Iraq’s electricity demand keeps on climbing and its overstretched infrastructure is struggling to cope. Government forecasts point to a 1.4GW year-on-year increase in peak demand to a new record 34.18GW for summer 2022 – with this month likely marking the peak. Underlining the sector’s struggles, the shutdown of a single transmission line in mid-June shut off at least 3.5GW of capacity in Basra province (MEES, 17 June).

Ministry of Electricity documents seen by MEES show that demand increased by 8.8% last year to average 19.81GW. The ministry puts available capacity at 23.4GW, up from 22GW last year, but even hitting this will be a challenge. The documents show the forecast between available supply and summer peak demand widening to 10.8GW this year, up from 9GW last year. Throw in transmission losses and the gap widens to almost 12.2GW for 2022 up from 11.66GW for 2021 (see chart). (CONTINUED - 1150 WORDS)