Egyptian Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, Tarek El Molla, announced that the Egyptian Cabinet approved importing 12b/y barrels of oil from Iraq, reported Al Ahram Gate.

During the press conference held in the Cabinet’s headquarter, El Molla said that Egypt will import an average of 1mb of Iraqi oil per month, noting that the move is the first joint cooperation between the two countries in the field of importing crude oil directly.

He added that the contract will be concluded by the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC) and the Iraq Petroleum Company (IPC). The contract, which has been pending the cabinet’s approval, will be signed within days.

The Minister expected the first cargo to arrive by May 2017.

El Molla explained that the talks with Iraq had started during his visit to the country in October 2016, adding that Egypt and Iraq discussed refining Iraqi crude oil in Egypt.