WASHINGTON: U.S. companies plan to unveil investments and agreements with the Iraqi government during Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi's first visit to the White House on Thursday, a senior administration official said.
The official, who briefed reporters in a Wednesday call, declined to offer details, indicating he wanted to leave that to U.S. Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette.
"We are covering a broad range of investments, covering a number of different U.S. companies. One of the principal objectives of this visit is to put them on sound footing," he said.
The Iraqi economy has been hammered by lockdowns to stem the spread of the novel coronavirus and sliding oil prices. Protests that began last year led to the resignation of cabinet officials and later to the departure of the former Prime Minister.
Earlier on Wednesday, Iraqi Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein said Iraq expects to sign an agreement with U.S. oil company Chevron Corp, without providing details.
The Wall Street Journal reported on Monday that Chevron tentatively plans to sign a memorandum of understanding with Iraq to develop one of the country’s large oil fields, citing people familiar with the matter.
According to the report, U.S. and Iraqi officials also intend to unveil progress toward finalizing natural gas and power-technology deals with Honeywell International Inc, General Electric Co and Stellar Energy.
(Reporting by Alexandra Alper and Daphne Psaledakis; Additional Reporting by Idrees Ali; Editing by Chris Reese and Grant McCool)