Delegation in Turkey to discuss oil exports

The source indicated that there are positive developments between Baghdad, Ankara, and Erbil.
Logo of the Iraqi government (right) and the KRG (Photo: Designed by Kurdistan 24)
Logo of the Iraqi government (right) and the KRG (Photo: Designed by Kurdistan 24)

ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – According to an informed source, speaking to Kurdistan 24 under anonymity, a delegation of representatives from the Kurdistan Region and Iraq is currently visiting Turkey.

The source indicated that there are positive developments between Baghdad, Ankara, and Erbil.

The source revealed that four oil companies have signed contracts, jointly agreed to by the KRG Ministry of Natural Resources and the Iraqi state oil marketing company (SOMO). 

Moreover, Iraqi Oil Minister Hayan Abdul-Ghani informed the state-run Iraqi News Agency on April 28 that they will declare the recommencement of oil exports in the upcoming days.

After the Paris-based International Court of Arbitration ruled in favor of Iraq on one of the 5 claims, Turkey stopped oil exports from the Kurdistan Region.

PM Masrour Barzani traveled to Baghdad on April 4 to sign an interim agreement that permitted the Kurdistan Region to resume exporting oil to Turkey's Ceyhan port. 

In Baghdad, PM Barzani and Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia' Al-Sudani held a joint press conference announcing the new agreement.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken on April 18 spoke by telephone with Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia’ Al-Sudani and said he “welcomed his efforts to reach an agreement between his government and the Kurdistan Regional Government to resume oil exports.”

According to the agreement, 400,000 bpd of Kurdish crude oil will be marketed and exported by SOMO at market rates.

Furthermore, the revenue from Kurdish oil sales will be deposited into a Central Bank of Iraq (CBI) account, owned by the KRG and monitored by Baghdad.

Nearly a month later, however, oil exports have not resumed.

Congressman Michael McCaul, who chairs the House Foreign Affairs Committee in the U.S. Congress, on Thursday expressed concerns that “Baghdad still isn’t allowing resumption of oil exports from the Kurdistan Region.”

“A pause in these exports is a win for the Iranian regime. The [Biden] administration must apply pressure to address this threat to stability and energy security in the region,” he tweeted.