[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]The Russian-Iranian competition for investment in Syrian resources and assets is reaching new levels. At this stage of reconstruction, Assad is forced to repay its two strongest allies during the war. Russia has strengthened its stronghold in the Mediterranean by reaching an agreement with the Syrian government over an investment in the Tartus Port in northwest Syria. This agreement had been reached only shortly after reports in Syria surfaced over negotiations between Assad and Iran over investment in the Latakia port.

The deal between Russia and the Syrian government had not been finalized yet, although Russian and Syrian sources confirm both sides have reached an agreement. The length of investment is set to be 49 years. The Tartus port is in need for heavy investment in its infrastructure and in operative machines for running the port.

In terms of revenue, the Russian RT media outlet in Arabic claims that the investment in Tartus can triple the profits of the port. The profits are currently around $24 million a year, while investment will increase revenues to around $84 million.

Syria seem to increase revenues from allowing foreign investment, yet it is sacrificing its most valuable assets to foreign control and proving its sovereignty unstable. The fact the agreement with Russia was reached after reports of negotiations with Iran over the Latakia suggest that the competition between Iran and Russia dictates the actions and policies of the Syrian government.

The option that Iran will have a seaport at the Mediterranean should concern Israel. The only alternative is Russia since the US will not invest in Syria as long as Assad stays. Though Israel enjoys positive coordination with Russian presence in the area, it does not mean all Israeli interests are been met by Moscow, yet for Israel, this is the only acceptable alternative to Iran.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Ibrahim Abu Ahmad

Ibrahim Abu Ahmad

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