MOSCOW (Sputnik) – The authorities of Iraqi Kurdistan are determined to develop economic relations with Russia, Mahmood Mohammed, the official representative of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), told Sputnik Wednesday.
“We consider that Russian firms have a better understanding of how to invest in our economy than companies from many other countries. That is why we are open for cooperation. There are no obstacles … Kurdistan wants to develop relations based on mutually beneficial cooperation with many countries, and Russia is one of these states,”
The KDP spokesman added that the bilateral relations between Russia and Iraqi Kurdistan had a long history.
In early June, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Iraqi Kurdistan’s Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani discussed cooperation between the two states, including in the political, economic and energy fields, on the sidelines of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum. The government of Iraqi Kurdistan and Russia’s energy company Rosneft signed several agreements, concerning the enhancement of cooperation in the field of hydrocarbon exploration and production, as well as on commerce and logistics at the forum.
Iraqi Kurdistan is an autonomous region in the north of Iraq. The Kurds, making up about 20 percent of the Iraqi population, have been seeking self-governance for decades. In June, Masoud Barzani, the president of Iraqi Kurdistan, set September 25 as the date for the referendum on the region’s independence from Iraq.