BAGHDAD, May 31 (Xinhua) -- Iraqi Oil Minister Hayan Abdul Ghani inaugurated Wednesday the first phase of the natural gas liquefaction plant in the al-Rumaila oilfield in Iraq's southern province of Basra.
A statement by the Iraqi Ministry of Oil said the plant liquefies 200 million cubic feet of associated gas per day in its first phase, which already started, and would entered its second phase of liquefying 400 million cubic feet per day at the end of this year.
During the opening ceremony, Abdul Ghani said the Iraqi government aims to reduce gas flares and convert it into clean energy to supply power plants, and the new plant is helpful in this regard, according to the statement.
Associated gas is natural gas that is produced along with crude oil, and is traditionally disposed through burning, a practice called gas flaring.
The minister added that the new facility would supply the power plants with 320 million cubic feet per day of liquefied gas, which will contribute in generating 1,900 megawatts of electricity within the national grid.
Moreover, the new plant will help produce 2,150 tons per day of liquified gas used in cooking, in addition to 5,900 barrels per day of condensates to be used to produce fuel and other chemicals, the statement said.