Dec 02, Colombo: The Sri Lankan government is currently considering to buy crude oil from Iraq as an alternative to the crude supply affected by the Us imposed sanctions on Iran.
Sri Lanka's only refinery at Sapugaskanda can process only Iranian crude and obtaining Iranian crude has become problematic.
The government is in the process of negotiating a deal with Iraq to obtain crude oil from that country which is believed to be similar in composition to the Iranian crude, according to a report in Sunday Times.
"Oil in northern Iraq is similar to Iranian crude and could be refined (domestically), thereby reducing costs on the import of refined products," Secretary of the External Affairs Ministry Karunatilaka Amunugama has told the English weekly.
According to Amunugama a senior diplomat has been assigned to conduct discussions at a diplomatic level to ink a potential deal with Iraq.
The Government was also looking at enhancing bilateral trade between the two countries which may include export of tea and ready-made garments to Iraq.