Meets with Iraqi Ministers of Oil, Electricity, and Science and Technology
BAGHDAD, IRAQ - U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Secretary Samuel W. Bodman today visited Iraq to talk first hand with his counterparts, the Ministers of Oil, Electricity, and Science and Technology, and to discuss ways the Department can help them build the energy infrastructure of their nation.
"The Iraqi people are showing tremendous fortitude as they move forward in building their new democracy and we, the United States, will stand with them," Secretary Bodman said. "The U.S. Department of Energy is prepared to support their efforts related to all elements of the energy sector here in Iraq, in whatever capacity they see fit."
President Bush asked Secretary Bodman and other cabinet members to go to Iraq to meet with their counterparts face-to-face. This dialogue has opened the channels of communications between the two nations in the program areas where the Department has a wide-range of expertise including in electricity generation and transmission, and crude oil development and regulation.
While in Iraq, Secretary Bodman met with Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri Al-Malaki, Deputy Prime Minister Barham Salih, Minister of Oil Husayn al-Shahristani, Minister of Electricity Karim Wahid al-Hasan, Minister of Science and Technology Ra'id Fahmi Jahid, and U.S. Ambassador to Iraq Zalmay Khalilzad.
During his discussions, Secretary Bodman announced a number of commitments from the U.S. Department of Energy. First, the department has invited officials from each of the ministries to come to the United States to tour DOE facilities and ask questions of the department's professionals in the national laboratories and in the areas of electricity generation, transmission and distribution.
The Secretary also announced an intent to enter into a Memorandum of Understanding between the U.S. Department of Energy and the Iraqi Ministry of Electricity. This MOU will promote increased cooperation between the two nations in the areas of energy analysis, science, technology, and energy awareness and education.
In addition, Secretary Bodman committed the relevant agencies within the DOE to a continued dialogue with the Ministries of Oil, Electricity, and Science and Technology.
"Today is just the beginning of our relationship between the Department of Energy and the Ministries of Oil, Electricity, and Science and Technology. And I look forward to working with them and seeing the successes of a free Iraq," Secretary Bodman said.
Craig Stevens, (202) 586-4940