The Iraqi government plans to turn the town of Akashat, in the western desert province of Anbar, into a centre for phosphate production, with the aim of supplying consuming markets in Asia. It is estimated that the reserves of phosphate rock in the four biggest deposits holds 5.75bn tonnes, reaching nine per cent of the global total. The two biggest deposits, Akashat and Swab, are thought to hold 1.7bn and 3.5bn tons of phosphate rock respectively. Their grade is slightly below an average of 25 per cent P2O5.
Four phosphate deposits—known as Akashat, H3, Ethna and Swab—are the most promising discoveries, and they also contain some 4.2bn tonnes of limestone, which could be used to manufacture cement.